The True Cost of Being a Wedding Guest

There is nothing better than a beautifully designed wedding invite falling on your doormat and it’s not long before you start planning what you’re going to wear and what you’ll be buying as a gift, but what we may not always think about right away is how much it costs to be a wedding guest in 2018. It goes without saying that some weddings are more elaborate, more extravagant than ever before and that comes with a hefty budget which is great for those with the budget to match, but if you have been lucky enough to be invited to a number of weddings this summer then it may feel a little overwhelming with the average wedding guest in the UK now spending £218 per wedding, but did you know that where you’re living may have a big impact on how much it’s costing you to be a wedding guest? High street jewellers Goldsmiths have found out where the most expensive places to be a wedding guest are and surprisingly, London isn’t at the top. If you’re a Belfast-based guest then you may want to grab a cup of tea before you read on and find out just how much the average wedding guest is spending in the city…
The Real Cost of Being a Wedding Guest on Clarke and Wedgewood


  1. Belfast – £278
  2. Liverpool – £270
  3. Norwich – £244
  4. Glasgow – £240
  5. Manchester – £233
  6. London – £230
  7. Leeds – £224
  8. Birmingham – £224
  9. Cardiff – £215
  10. Newcastle – £209

Now if you’re someone spending upwards of £200 on each wedding it would come as no surprise that you may be annoyed to then be told that the couple are asking for a cash gift for their wedding, potentially pushing up the spend even more. Not only do you have the tricky decision to make on just how much you should be giving, but if you’ve already spent hundreds on the big day it can be a bit of a financial burden that could turn what should be a day of excitement, love and elation to one that is met with a sense of disdain. However Goldsmiths have found that being asked for money as a wedding gift falls into spot 9 in the top 10 grievances of wedding guests, can you guess what takes the top spot?

Being invited to a hen/stag do and wedding abroad. Yes, a huge 39% of people surveyed said that a wedding and hen/stag in another country is the biggest bugbear and this could be down to a number of things; taking time off work or using up valuable paid holiday, the hassle of arranging accommodation and flights, the stress of packing formalwear that is inevitably going to get creased in transit and of course all of the additional costs that come with going abroad. I think it is fair to say that this is quite a justifiable annoyance, but some of the other responses on Goldsmiths list may be a little more questionable…

  1. Being invited to a hen/stag do and wedding abroad (39%)
  2. Screaming children (36%) – oh come on, really?
  3. Drunken relatives (34%)
  4. Inconvenient location (29%)
  5. Long and cringeworthy speeches (29%)
  6. Long ceremony (26%)
  7. Long waits for food (25%)
  8. Not receiving a plus one when invited (22%)
  9. Being asked for money for the wedding gift (17%)
  10. When a wedding falls on a weekday (13%)

It definitely makes for an interesting read to get an insight into what people find most annoying at a wedding and can help any couples planning their big day consider how to plan the perfect big day with Craig Bolton, the Executive Director at Goldsmiths commenting that “it’s fascinating to get an insight into… what is right and wrong when it comes to wedding celebrations – especially when it’s so important for things to run smoothly on the big day“. Your wedding day should be about you and your partner and what best reflects you as a couple, so if you want a longer heartfelt ceremony then you have it, if you want your celebration at a spot that’s meaningful to you and your other half that’s a little out of the way then ignore the 29% and book the inconvenient location and feeling tight on space in your venue? Then don’t allow plus ones. It’s your day so the decisions should be made based on what is best for you two , after all it will be you and your partner who will remember the day forever and you don’t want to have any regrets.

If you’re struggling to know what to wear to any upcoming weddings check out our Wedding Guest Style Guide with the guys over at Black Tux for some great pointers and guidance to make sure you look and feel incredible while you celebrate your loved ones nuptials.