The Least (& Most) Expensive Places to Get Married in America

The national average cost of a wedding is $35,329 — but that may not be what you pay in your state.

Image: Bliznetsov

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The Father of the Bride Isn’t the Only One Picking Up the Wedding Tab Anymore

I remember watching Steve Martin in “Father of the Bride” talk about his little girl getting married, saying: “I used to think a wedding was a simple affair. Boy and girl meet. They fall in love. He buys a ring, she buys a dress, they say I do. I was wrong. That’s getting married. A wedding is an entirely different proposition.”

And, it was at that point in the movie that my own father gave me this knowing look, probably imagining what would happen one day when his only daughter (a daughter with expensive taste, mind you) walked down the isle: He’d get hit with a lofty bill to pay for that dream wedding.

Well, rest easy, dad, because a new survey shows that the father of the bride isn’t always the one picking up the tab for a wedding anymore. Heck, sometimes there isn’t even a bride — or there are two — but the poll focused solely on heterosexual marriages.

The two-day SurveyMonkey Audience poll, commissioned by FiveThirtyEight, happened in August and collected the opinions of 1,050 people.

The survey zeroed in on heterosexual marriages “because there are a whole lot of inherited gender roles and history involved,” FiveThirtyEight said in a blog post.

It found that 26% of respondents said the couple should be paying for the wedding themselves. The same amount of people said it should be equally split between the couple and both sets of parents. But, not too far behind (25%) is the bride’s family. The rest of the respondents were pretty split — 12% saying the groom’s family and bride’s family should split the cost, 7% saying it’s up to the bride’s family and the couple to pay, and only 2% felt the groom’s family should take on the responsibility. Zero percent said the groom’s family and the couple should pay.

Paying for Your Wedding

If you’re getting ready to walk down the isle, no matter who is paying for the event, it certainly isn’t a day worth anyone going into extreme debt over. Remember, going into debt could make it harder for the two of you to start your life together — whether you’re looking to get a mortgage or new car — as carrying high levels of debt will hurt your credit scores. (You can see where your credit currently stands by viewing two of your credit scores for free, updated each month, on Credit.com.)

Image: monkeybusinessimages

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