Wedding budget

You have just gotten engaged and are starting to ask yourself a thousand questions about your upcoming wedding, its cost and your budget?

If a legal marriage at the town hall doesn’t cost anything (good news!), it is the preparation of the festive part of a wedding that generates many costs. In order to start your preparations serenely and without stress, the preparation of your wedding budget is the step number one not to be missed. Keep in mind that there is no right or wrong answer in terms of a wedding budget. Every couple and every story are different. It is therefore normal that each couple’s wedding budgets can vary quite widely.

If you are here, it is certainly because you want to organize for the occasion a nice family party, to wear beautiful outfits, and to keep precious memories of this moment. In general, a wedding is organized only once in a lifetime. So, when you get started, it is not necessarily obvious to know the price of the various services that will enter wedding budget. But don’t panic. In order to help you and to give you some ideas of the amount to be allocated to each service we will give you a small overview of the prices charged to help you design your wedding budget. Obviously, the budget that each person will allocate to his or her wedding depends on many elements. The level of income, the region, the season, the number of guests, the age at which you will get married… are all factors that influence the amount spent on average for a wedding. Everyone is free to spend as much or as little as they wish.

Perhaps you will be the only one to pay for the expenses related to this day or maybe your parents would like to help you and participate to the wedding budget? Well even if it’s not obvious don’t leave any doubt and ask clearly how much money your parents will want to commit. If the parents are financing part of the wedding, make sure that the commitment of each party does not make the other’s parents uncomfortable.

To give you an idea, the average budget for a wedding in France with 100 people is  45 000€. This figure is obviously only an average and is therefore likely to vary according to many of the criteria mentioned above. If you are below this average budget, there is no reason to panic! It is entirely possible to organize a great party without the need for a huge budget. The first step is to define the maximum amount you can allocate to the organization of your wedding, taking into account your income, your expenses, the amount of your savings and your current credits. Once this amount has been defined, you will be able to create a more precise budget, by expense item and by type of provider, as you go along. Over the months of preparation, you will compare many providers, make tradeoffs and compromises, which will allow you to prioritize certain expenses while respecting your overall budget. In order to progress in your research, we advise you to build your wedding budget on excel. As your research and quotes are obtained, update your table and information, checking that your overall envelope is respected.

Here is a list of providers included in your wedding budget:


More and more couples are choosing to delegate a part of the organization of their wedding to a professional. This allows you to be less stressed during the wedding preparations and especially to better enjoy the special day. This help can cost you between 1000 and 10 000€. It is up to you to make your best choice.

  • Destination (Castle, Mansion, Hotel…)

It can be free, if you choose to unite in a family home in a small group. Be careful to be able to welcome your guests in a sheltered place in case of rain (the famous plan B!). A town hall will cost you on average a few hundred euros, a castle or a private mansion will cost from 5000€.

  • Travel ticket (Plane, Train…)

Depending on the wedding destination you will choose, don’t forget that there is a price to pay to get there. Again, it all depends on whether you want to celebrate your union on the other side of the world or if you prefer to do it close to home.

  • Invitations (except if by mail)

If you rather send an email to your guests, there is no need for a budget here. Otherwise It depends on the location of your guests and how many there will be, on the vendors you will choose, on the materials and craftsmanship required, certain details and designs are more expensive than others. On average, a couple spends between from 300€ on 100 invitations and response cards.

  • Wedding celebrant

No matter the size of your wedding, behind every wedding day there is a celebrant who is there to take care of the most important part of your day: the wedding ceremony. Your budget here will be from 500€.

  • Dress & Suit

As far as wedding dresses are concerned, all budgets are allowed. Indeed, many ready-to-wear brands offer very affordable civilian or long wedding dresses at low prices. New brands have also blossomed on the wedding ready-to-wear market for several years and offer original models at attractive prices. The prices offered by these new brands vary between 500 € and up to 1500 €. For those who want to dedicate a more important amount to their dresses, many designers compete in imagination to propose models of wedding dresses in the era of time. The price of their collections can then range between 1500 € and 4000 € according to the chosen model. In average people spend from 1200€ for their dresses and suit.

  • Accesories (shoes, jewlerry…)

Regarding accessories and shoes, everything depends on the quality you choose and the number of pieces you want to wear. It is possible that you will want to wear jewelry from families that have a sentimental value to you. In this case your budget will be necessarily reduced, otherwise for the complete set, count from 750€.

  • Rings

You must know that you will find rings at all prices. But the choice of the ring is a personal choice and so is the budget you put into it.

The engagement ring as well as the wedding ring are expensive items, the cost of which varies considerably depending on the type of metal chosen and whether or not gemstones are included.

It is probably the best investment in your wedding, as most brides and grooms wear their rings every day.

  • Makeup & hair

If you want to do your own glam, go ahead. But we do recommend hiring a professional hairstylist and makeup artist because they’re the experts. Professional wedding hair and makeup may cost extra, but it’s absolutely worth it. For a total bridal look count from 300Keep in mind that makeup artists bring their own high-end cosmetics with them, so you’re paying for quality products as well.

  • Transportation

Feeling fancy or nontraditional? Think beyond cars—we know couples who’ve gone by way of horse, carriage, limos…While some of these options can be pricier than the standard car service, many creative alternatives may just save you some money. Either way you should count from 80€ per hours for your wedding transportation.

  • Caterer

The average cost of a caterer at a wedding is quite high and is usually the largest item of expenditure to be expected. The average price for a dozen cocktail and a seated meal can vary between €50 and up to €150 per person, depending on the type of menu chosen (buffet, meal served at the table, number of cocktails per guest, type of meat served, number of children’s menus, etc.). A meal served with a buffet, for example, is always less expensive than a meal served at the table. In order to reduce your catering budget, it is recommended that you order your own drinks and alcoholic beverages, without going through your caterer.

  • Wedding cake

It’s becoming more and more common for couples to want a wedding cake that stands out and plays center stage at their wedding reception, but cakes like this come with a cost attached. According to the size, the design and where you set on hiring a wedding cake (you should expect an extra fee for delivery or travel), the cost will definitely be very different. In average count 20€ per person.

  • Flowers

For flowers, count between 50 and 150€ for a centerpiece, 90 and 200€ for a bridal bouquet. The decoration may also be filed with  flowers so your wedding budget on flowers can quickly become more important. Obviously, it all depends on the style, the volume of flowers, the work involved, the season, but this gives you an idea of this budget.

  • Decorations

Again, giving an exact average would be complicated. It all depends on the chosen place, on your desires, on the atmosphere wanted, or on whether or not you want to have recourse to a decorator.

A wedding designer or decorator, who will be in charge of setting the atmosphere of your wedding, will charge on average between 800€ and 5000€ for his services, depending on the chosen formulas, excluding equipment and furniture. As for the furniture, count from 5€ per person for the rental of crockery, and furniture such as chairs and tables, count from 12€ per person. Do not forget the price of transportation that will be ad to your budget.

  • Place mark

Often forgotten, the place mark is nevertheless necessary for your reception and does not cost anything. Count between 100 and 150€ depending on the number of guests and the chosen design and materials.

  • Music

Depending on the providers you wish to hire, the cost will necessarily vary. For example, a simple violinist will cost you from 350€ while for a live band you will have to count on average 5000€.

  • Dj

Depending on the professional, the equipment he will provide, his experience, the time he will spend at your side (to sound the ceremony, the cocktail and / or the evening), if he must also provide microphones, manage the entertainment of your witnesses etc., count between 850 and 2500 € for a complete quality service.

  • Dancers

Obviously, who says music says dancers. If you wish to hire professional dancers to animate your evening, count 500€ per dancer.

  • Photographer & Videographer

Images are one of the only material things you will keep from your day. But then again, it’s all a matter of priority.

As far as photography is concerned, avoid as much as possible entrusting this mission to your brother / cousin / friend versed in photography. As a guest himself he might also want to enjoy the party rather than spend 12 hours photographing your wedding.

Depending on his experience, the region, his reputation, the options offered and the coverage time, count between 1800€ and 4500€ for a professional wedding photographer.

To the photo budget, the ideal option is to be able to add a video budget, so that you can truly relive all the emotion of this day. Some professionals work as a duo and offer services that combine photography and video, for example.

  • Fireworks

Professionally staged outdoor aerial fireworks show for a wedding, averages about 2000-5000€ depending on the duration of the show, the number of large shells or special fireworks, if the display is set to music and the number of firing stations (to set off multiple fireworks simultaneously).

  • Favours for guests

Spending your wedding day surrounded by loved ones is an unforgettable experience. Guests travel far to celebrate your big day-often bearing gifts and well wishes. To thank them for their attendance and support, many brides and grooms send their loved ones home with tokens of their appreciation in the form of wedding favors. To give you an idea, count between 5 to 15€ per guest.

  • Security & hostesse

One thing that many people often overlook is the issue of safety and yet it is a necessity just like the hostesses who will take a weight off your shoulders.

It’s your big day, and you want to make sure that everything goes smoothly. It’s normal to want to make an event a success.

Obviously, when we add together each of the expense items of a wedding, the sums often seem substantial. But as you know, moments when we have the opportunity to invite a hundred people for a day are rare. So inevitably, for this day of celebration bringing together so many people, we do things in a big. Some people have dreamed all their life for this day to be the greatest ever but some others prefer to save on their wedding budget to spend it on their honeymoon. It is totally understandable not to wish spending a large budget to each of the items. You have every right not to want a gourmet meal, or a castle for your wedding, and this will not make your day any less magical.

Listen to yourself, and don’t be pressured by all the pretty things you can see. The most important thing is you and the commitment you are about to make. Of course, it is possible to get married on a small budget and live a wonderful day. And it doesn’t matter how much you commit to that day, as long as you are comfortable with it, that it corresponds to your desires, to your life and to what you want to dedicate to that moment.


Do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or simply if you feel like it. We are listening to each of the wishes of our future newlyweds or simply curious and passionate about marriage.

CTH Events Paris is here to support you in the organization of this day and offers you a multitude of services and packages, such as the “wedding in a castle”.

If you liked this article, take a look at our News section , you might be interested in “How to plan your wedding?”.

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