Dear Stephanie: How Much Does It Really Cost To Be A Bridesmaid?

December 15, 2020
Dear Stephanie: How Much Does It Really Cost To Be A Bridesmaid?

Written by: Stephanie with Sweetheart Events

The bridesmaid proposal happened and your best friend or sister is eagerly waiting for your answer…Duh! Of course, it’s a YES!

Then in the afterthought, you ask yourself, “Am I financially prepared to be her bridesmaid?”

Photo by: The Apartment Photography

On average a woman will spend more than $1,200 being a bridesmaid. From my personal experience and knowledge of costs, I would say this number can actually surpass $2,000!

Holy cow!

Before committing to standing by your friend’s side, it’s important to ensure that you can afford this incredible experience.

Below, we’re breaking down the various costs that typically go into being a bridesmaid.

Photo by: The Apartment Photography

THE BREAKDOWN

THE DRESS
$150 – $300

We estimated $150 – $300! However, the cost could easily exceed this if you need alterations. Factor in shipping if the dress is from an online boutique like Birdy Grey, Azazie, or BHLDN.

SHOES & ACCESSORIES
$50 – $150+

Some brides may gift you earrings to wear with your dress but if not, many request you wear a specific type of shoe or accessory. Save room in your budget just in case you don’t have the appropriate shoes or accessories for your friend’s special day.

NAILS 
$50 – $100

HAIR & MAKEUP
$150 – $200, plus tip!

Sometimes the bride will pay for hair and makeup or one of the two! Find out ahead of time so you’re not put in an awkward position when it comes time to pay.

BACHELORETTE
$250 – $1,000+

Depending on where this getaway is, what activities are planned, and how long the trip is, the bachelorette party can add up quickly! Many bride tribes will often chip in to cover the cost for the bride as well. Totally up to your group of friends. Many bachelorette parties will also host a panty party or similar gift exchange which is another cost to factor in.

GIFTS
$50 – $150+ each

As a bridesmaid, you’ll be invited to every event from the engagement party and bridal shower to the wedding day. Gifts are expected at each event which can cost you between $50-$150 per event.

TRAVEL/ ACCOMMODATION
$200 – $2,000+

This segment of costs can add up fast! So be careful and be sure to plan ahead. From flights and hotels to gas and transportation, there are many things you should factor in when budgeting for the actual wedding weekend. If you’re looking to save money, be sure to book your hotel in advance to ensure you get the wedding room rate. It’s important to also factor in dining out, extracurricular activities, etc. that you may be partaking in during your stay.

GRAND TOTAL
$1,200 – $2,000, if not more!

Photo by: Angela Ruscheinski

NOTE: The majority of brides will cover parts of these costs. I encourage you to have a conversation about costs, responsibilities, and what you should expect to cover for the wedding day at the very beginning.

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