Lifetime Cost of Being a Bridesmaid Is Now $6,620

Find out which parts of sharing the joyful event contribute to the whopping price tag.

Lifetime Cost of Being a Bridesmaid Is Now $6,620 Photo (cc) by balleyne

Women now spend an average of $6,620 on being a bridesmaid over the course of their lifetime.

That’s based on a survey by data company Priceonomics and e-commerce wedding company Weddington Way, which found that the average cost of being a bridesmaid is $1,324 per wedding.

It assumes a woman is a bridesmaid five times in her life. Priceonomics reports that while there is a lack of data on the subject, “a number of our survey respondents over the age of 40” said they’d served as a bridesmaid four to six times.

The survey polled more than 600 women who shop on and asked how much various bridesmaid-related expenses cost, and whether they were paid for by the bridesmaid or bride.

Even in the least expensive region of the country, the Midwest, the average cost of being a bridesmaid is $1,178 per wedding. In the most expensive region, the Northeast, it is $1,466.

Here’s how the survey findings show the national average of $1,324 per wedding breaks down:

  1. Travel and lodging: Accounts for 23.9 percent of the total cost of being a bridesmaid
  2. Bachelorette party: 23.3 percent
  3. Bridal shower: 14.6 percent
  4. Bridesmaid dress: 12.5 percent
  5. Wedding gift: 9.4 percent
  6. Makeup and hair: 6.7 percent
  7. Shoes: 5.4 percent
  8. Accessories: 4.2 percent

About 53 percent of bridesmaids travel for the wedding, with flight, rental car and lodging costs amounting to an average of $317, the most expensive line item.

Certain expenses are more likely than others to be picked up by the bride, the survey found. The items the bride is most likely to pay for are:

  1. Accessories: Paid for by 38.9 percent of brides
  2. Makeup and hair: 17.2 percent
  3. Bridal shower: 10.7 percent
  4. Travel and lodging: 10.7 percent
  5. Bridesmaid dress: 4.1 percent
  6. Shoes: 2.4 percent

If you or someone you know will be a bridesmaid in the future, be sure to first check out “You’re Going to Be a Bridesmaid? 8 Ways to Keep From Going Broke.”

What’s your take on the cost of being in a wedding party these days? Share your thoughts below or on Facebook.

Karla Bowsher
Karla Bowsher
I’m a freelance journalist and former newspaper reporter who has covered both personal and public finance. I've worked for a top 50 major metro daily and a community newspaper as well as ... More


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