Received another wedding invitation? You may want to start planning ahead after a survey by Bank of Ireland and weddingsonline revealed the cost of being a wedding guest these days can be as much as €800*. As wedding season approaches, the survey revealed that the majority of respondents will be attending 2 weddings in 2015, bringing to approximately €1,600 the total cost when taking gift, outfit, cost of travel, accommodation, hen / stag and the cost on the day itself into consideration.
The lion’s share of the cost of attending a wedding goes to the amount of money spent on the gift, accommodation and the hen or stag, each costing the average guest between €100 and €200 euro. It seems Irish guests are becoming thrifty, however, as whilst 50% of the respondents claim to spend between €100 and €150 on a new outfit for the big day the other half say they recycle a previously worn outfit.
Whilst most of those polled claimed they would spend much less on a gift for ‘just a friend’ (between €100 and €150), a whopping 40% admitted to spending more than €200 on a gift for a family member and up to €200 for a very close friend. Wedding guests give what they would like to receive also, with 87% claiming they will give cash as a wedding present and 94% saying they would prefer to receive cash rather than a gift on their own special day.
Irish people don’t appear to be too deterred by the cost of attending a wedding however with the majority (62%) saying they would never say no to a friend’s wedding because of cost – even if it was abroad.
With weddings becoming such a huge expense for Irish guests it is surprising to see that only 30% claimed to save for these social occasions with the majority (65%) claiming to finance the cost from their current accounts. It seems we’re not willing to get into debt to attend a wedding though with only 4% relying on an overdraft or credit card.
With couples spending a massive amount of time, money and energy on planning every detail of their wedding day, it appears it really is all about the company with 311 out of the 530 people surveyed by Bank of Ireland and weddingsonline saying they most looked forward to catching up with close friends and relatives. Only a mere 11% said they looked forward to the speeches - at the end of the day, there are few better occasions in the social calendar than an Irish wedding!
Speaking at the launch of Bank of Ireland’s Wedding Guest Survey, David Ward, Head of Current Accounts with Bank of Ireland, commented “With wedding season in full swing we have a range of solutions to help you manage your expenses. With our internet, mobile and tablet banking, you can manage your incomings and outgoings on the move. You can also open a savings account on your mobile app in minutes if you want to start saving for wedding expenses and our Pay to Mobile allows customers to transfer money safely and quickly to family and friends with a registered Bank of Ireland account, simply by using their mobile phone number, handy for splitting the bill at the end of the night!.”
weddingsonline’s Marketing Manager Sophie Pigott adds "Wedding season is an exciting time for couples and guests alike but it does come at a cost. The wedding gift topic regularly comes back up in our discussion forums. A general rule is to cover the cost of your meal and a little bit more. Cash is definitely the most popular wedding gift followed by gift cards. While wedding gift lists are not as popular here as in the States, some couples use them to give their guests an idea of what they like or to cover their honeymoon costs."
*Cost of attending a friend’s wedding in 2015 costs €800
Bank of Ireland’s Wedding Guest Survey 2015 was conducted with weddingsonline during April 2015 with a total of 530 respondents aged between 18 – 44 years of age.