It's hard to separate the excitement of planning the wedding of your dreams with the inevitable dread that comes with realizing just how much the celebration is going to cost you.
But getting caught up in having the celebration of a lifetime can lead many — rather, most — to go way over budget and spend more than they can afford to.
All in the name of true love, right?
Thanks to a new survey by WeddingWire, new data gathered the course of the past 10 years points to the fact that not only have we not gotten any better at reigning in our spending come wedding season, but that we may have gradually gotten worse.
The price of an engagement ring increased by a whopping 57 percent — and maybe we can blame that on social media and the need to flaunt what we've got whenever the oppotunity presents itself.
Though the average number of guests at a wedding reception has barely changed (from 110 guests in 2007 to 124 guests in 2017), the price of the overall wedding has increased an astounding 81 percent.
So, what's the average price of a wedding today?
According to WeddingWire's data, the average cost of a wedding ceremony and reception is around $28,000, compared with roughly $16,000 a decade ago.
Here's a complete list of which wedding vendors to tip:
Accounting for inflation, that $16,000 would equate to around $19,200 today — and this would still account for a 46 percent change in wedding price over the course of the past 10 years.
But what's especially alarming about all of this data is the fact that, according to the US Census ACS survey, the median household income hasn't increased to correlate with the increase of spending — in fact, it's stayed relatively stagnant (from $56,122 in 2005 to $55,775 in 2015).
And after adjusting for inflation, the average household income seems to have actually decreased by a substantial 20 percent.
This comes at no surprise, then, that the top concern of wedding planning has remained the same over the past decade — determining a budget.
Thanks to the rise of sites like Pinterest, Etsy and Instagram, having "DIY" elements to your wedding seems much easier and attainable than ever before — and that can cause a lot of stress in terms of knowing where to cut costs and where to shell out.
That's probably why only 14 percent of couples struggled with "determining what components of the wedding to DIY" a decade ago while that number has more than doubled today at 33 percent.
Instagrammable and trendy vendors, like food trucks and quirky photobooths, have also brought confusion to couples — only 10 percent of couples a decade ago felt unsure when it came to deciding what to use a vendor for, where nearly 32 percent of couples today find this to be a "challenging" part of the wedding planning process.
But though prices and expenses have changed throughout the years, one thing has remained the same -- love is still alive, no matter what the cost!
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