It Costs $703 Just to Attend a Wedding Now

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You may dread receiving certain mail, particularly bills reminding you how much you owe. And if you’re like some Americans, you may get that same sinking feeling when a wedding invite appears in your mailbox. That’s because the average wedding now costs $703, according to a recent survey from American Express.

The American Express Spending & Saving Tracker fielded input from a random sample of 1,803 adult participants, including the general U.S. population, as well as an affluent demographic defined by a minimum annual household income of $100,000.

It found Americans will attend an average of three weddings this year and spend $703 each time, up 5% from $673 in 2015.

Millennials will spend $893, or 27% more than the average guest, while those in the couple’s wedding party could pay closer to $743, up from $701 in 2015. When millennials are in the wedding party, they can expect to pay an average of $928, the most expensive payment by far.

These totals were based on average airfare ($205), cost of wedding party attire ($166) and childcare/pet care costs ($69). Guests can also expect to spend an average of $127 on wedding gifts for relatives, up from $142 in 2015, and $99 for friends, up from $90 in 2015.

Many couples themselves are responding to the rising cost of hosting a wedding by simplifying the event (30%) with a courthouse marriage or holding an intimate ceremony. Moreover, 24% plan the wedding themselves, 21% opt for a less expensive venue and 55% complete some type of DIY wedding project.

Before planning your own wedding, you’ll need to have a firm understanding of you and your partner’s credit. It’s also helpful to know your creditworthiness if you plan to open a credit card or take out a personal loan to cover the costs. You can view your two free credit scores on Credit.com.

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