Wedding guests pay an average £564 to attend the big day abroad

The Momentum UK Team 23 July 2014

With wedding season upon us, it’s been revealed that the average guest pays £564 to attend the big day abroad – more than twice the cost of going to a UK wedding.

The average cost of attending a UK wedding is £247, but a huge 25% of UK couples are planning to get married abroad in the next 18 months, leaving many guests paying an average £564 to attend, according to research by

The research also shows that one in 10 people are planning to attend a wedding abroad in the next 18 months, but many guests surveyed are unhappy about the cost involved. 14% would not travel to a wedding abroad, regardless of who was getting married, with over 59% of those surveyed saying they would prefer to attend a wedding in the UK.

39% of people said it is a big stretch to ask people to attend a wedding outside of the UK – and 13% said they did not want to waste their limited holiday budget on seeing the happy couple for a few hours.

For those who are travelling abroad, there is a level of restraint being shown for things like wedding gift purchasing. 9% of those surveyed felt there’s no need to buy the bride and groom a present if they’d paid for travel and accommodation just to be there on the day.

10% said they felt the couple should subsidise the cost of things like flights and accommodation if they wanted them to be there to share in their day – and 12% of surveyed couples are doing this for their guests.

There are many reasons why a couple may choose to wed overseas: 15% said it is cheaper than getting married in the UK, and 7% said they were getting better value for their nuptials. However, 25% admitted that they’re getting hitched abroad to avoid having to invite every member of their families, and 15% believed it will cause less arguments. 7% of surveyed couples felt that it would be less stressful to tie the knot abroad.

The weather is also a big pull for couples: 34% cited better weather as a reason why they’re planning a wedding abroad. The five most popular wedding destinations emerging from the research were: the Caribbean (19%), Australia (12%), America (10%), Canada (8%), and Cyprus (8%).

Sammy-Lea Samways, head of travel insurance at commented on the findings:

“Destination weddings can often be difficult for invited guests because of the price and time involved. It can pose the dilemma of a costly trip abroad versus the desire to see the happy couple get married.

“Combining the wedding trip with an annual holiday could be a good way that guests could save money.”

To see the impact of the cost of a wedding either at home or abroad, try Money Hub – our award-winning money management tool.