Unexpected wedding cost – be prepared!


No matter how carefully you plan and budget for your big day there’s bound to be a few unexpected things you have to shell out for.  In this post we list a few of them so that they don’t come as a total surprise!

Hair and beauty

You obviously want to look your absolute best and that means getting your hair and makeup perfect.  If you go for a package then trials might be included in the cost – but that may not be the case.  Professional stylists will usually recommend at least one trial to create exactly the right look for your big day and some brides may have more than one trial and try more than one artist.  The cost of these can swiftly add up, so factor the cost in.  A useful tip is to have images ready to show your stylist and a clear idea of what you want before you go in for a trial.

Last minute treatments

Don’t forget facials, eyebrows and manicures (and maybe for your bridesmaids too).   There’s a long list of beauty treatments and pampering treats that the bride and her bridal party can enjoy a few days before the wedding.  The feel-good factor is terrific but can come with a hefty price tag - so ensure you are in a comfortable position to pay for the privilege before you book your appointments.

Ceremony fees

Whether you're having a religious, civil or humanist ceremony, there are sure to be fees involved.  These costs won’t be included with your venue fees, even if you're holding the ceremony in the same place as your wedding reception. Your ceremony fees will be paid to the church, registration service or independent celebrant.

Don’t overlook the underwear

Having the right wedding underwear is more important than you might expect.  It’s essential to get the proper shape and support under your wedding dress to achieve a comfortable fit and a seamless finish.  And let’s face it, if you're splashing out on a beautiful bridal gown, then why not have beautiful bridal underwear to match?  Then you might want to change into a less formal gown for the reception – and underwear that’s more sexy for your wedding night.  The correct underwear need not be expensive, but it is an additional cost that should be factored in to your entire bridal ensemble.


There’s more to wedding day fashion than your dress - bridal accessories can make all the difference, adding the wow factor in more ways than one.  Consider jewellery, hairpieces and shoes when finalising your bridal look and tot up these costs for inclusion in the final budget. Likewise, for the groom and groomsmen you need to think cufflinks, pocket watches, ties/bow ties, pocket squares, shoes and socks.  All these items soon add up but by the same token its these little details that turn great into amazing.

Photo by  Tamara Menzi  on  Unsplash

Extra mouths to feed

When you draw up your wedding guest list and work out how many you’ll need to cater for it’ss easy to forget about those wedding suppliers.  Photographers, videographers and entertainers are usually on hand all day, or at least for a substantial part of it, and they may need refreshments too.  Be sure to ask them and be prepared to pay the costs of their food and drink.

You may need to provide extra catering for your bridal party.  If everyone has an early breakfast, and the ceremony and celebrations are scheduled for the afternoon, there may be a bunch of very hungry people around lunchtime!  Your venue may supply platters of sandwiches, as well as teas and coffees, as you get ready – but this may not be included in your package costs.

Photo by  Kelsey Knight  on  Unsplash


If you want to order the wine yourself you’ll probably find that the venue charges you a fee per bottle (known as “corkage”).  The exact arrangement and costs are usually discussed with your venue in the process of making your booking.  Be sure to find out what the exact charge is before you decide whether to provide the wine yourself or get the venue to supply it.


You’ve designed your invitations, sorted the printing, written in the names and addresses beautifully…but what about the stamps?  You budgeted for stationery but you probably forgot to add in the postage.   It won’t break the bank but it will tip you nearer towards the red.

Gifts for the bridal party

Your bridesmaids and groomsmen have been working hard with all the preparations for months, as well as being wonderful on the day.  Giving them a little something to say “thank you” is a nice gesture.  A little piece of jewellery is sure to be popular with the girls while fancy hip flasks and cufflinks always go down well with the boys.

Photo by  Wijdan Mq  on  Unsplash

Photo by Wijdan Mq on Unsplash

Thank you cards

Once all the excitement has died down and you’ve recovered from your honeymoon you’ll want to thank all your guests for joining you on your special day.  If you’ve gone for a bespoke stationery package you can get some 'Thank You' notes printed as part of the deal.  Or you can buy them separately on the high street or online.  Either way you’ll need to take account of the cost and add in the postage too.

Here to help, any way we can

Hopefully this list will help you avoid the most commonly overlooked costs that tend to nudge the best laid plans over budget.  If you have any other questions about anything else weddings don’t hesitate to ask us – the team here is only too happy to help!

Jim O'ConnorComment