BOSTON (CBS) – I thought we could spend the week talking about couples and when I get interested in a subject there is always money involved. I attended a wedding this weekend and as I watched the bride walk down a very long isle I wondered how much this was all costing.

American weddings are a $72 billion industry that employs over 1 million people, according to the market-research firm IBISWorld.

There are over 2 million weddings each year. The average cost of a wedding in the U.S. is almost $30,000. Oh, and that price tag does not include the honeymoon or insurance. Honeymoons can easily add another $10,000 to the bottom line. Couples will spend an estimated $7 billion on honeymoons this year. Many of these couples or their parents are going into debt to create the perfect wedding.

The average cost of a wedding in Boston came in at $39,000! Now “average” means there are weddings that cost a lot less and weddings that cost a lot more.

Interestingly about 26% of couples stay within budget, 45% of couples went over budget, 6% came in under budget and 23% didn’t have a budget at all.

And it looks like many couples these days are still getting financial help from family to cover wedding costs. Only 12% of couples pay for the whole wedding themselves. On average, couples contributed 43% of the budget, the bride’s parents contributed another 43%, the groom’s parents contributed 12% and “others” account for the remaining 2%.

Another extra cost which I found is somewhat new is wedding insurance. According to the Better Business Bureau, basic wedding insurance that covers loss of photos, videos, attire, presents, rings, and deposits usually costs between $150 and $550, depending on the amount of coverage you want. General liability insurance, which covers up to $1 million for accidents, costs around $200.

And you may want coverage that will also cover problems with the site, weather, vendors, key people, sickness, or injury which are the top concerns come wedding day. There is usually a specified maximum amount, which can be claimed under each section, and a deductible also applies.

Be sure to understand your insurance coverage. As with any insurance the proof is in the details. Read the fine print. Check out what it does cover and how much will it cover. If you are getting married in January, will you be covered for a snowstorm?


You can hear Dee Lee’s expert financial advice on WBZ NewsRadio 1030 each weekday at 1:55 p.m., 3:55 p.m., and 7:55 p.m.

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