The Top 10 Most Expensive Cities in the U.S. for Weddings

Everyone knows that weddings can be very expensive and hard to budget efficiently. If you’re really looking for ways to stick to a wedding budget and not break the bank while planning your big day, it’s helpful to do some research and make sure you take all budget-dependent factors into consideration. For example, you can figure out specific venue prices, how time of year affects wedding costs, and how to save money by working on DIY projects. Something else to keep in mind is how location can predict the cost of wedding planning. To make sure you’re fully informed and ready to plan your wedding, we’ve compiled a list of the most expensive cities in the U.S. for weddings.

1.) New York City, NY

The biggest city in the United States comes with the biggest budget for weddings. The average wedding in NYC costs $16,077 with a third of this money being spent on catering. The main contributor to this sky-scraping price is likely the fact that 50 percent of New York brides want a guest list of 100 people or more. Empire State weddings are also more fancy and the overall cost of living in New York City is substantially higher than the U.S. city average, which certainly contributes to the higher price.


Photo Credit: Stylish Hip Weddings

2.) Philadelphia, PA

In second place for the most expensive U.S. city to get married comes Philadelphia. Trailing close behind New York, a Philadelphia wedding costs an average of $15,434. Similar to NYC, catering for a wedding in Philly is a significant expenditure, with high costs also coming from hair and makeup.


Photo Credit: Shea Roggio Photography

3.) Pittsburgh, PA

Pittsburgh comes in the ranking as the third most expensive U.S. city for weddings at an average price of $14,287. Hiring a band costs a pretty penny in Pittsburgh, with the price hitting a high of $3,818, which tops all other expenses, even catering.


Photo Credit: Ovation Images

4.) Baltimore, MD

The fourth most expensive city to get married in is Baltimore, Maryland. The average cost, however, is barely twenty dollars less than Pittsburgh. All of the expenditure averages are pretty leveled with other cities, except for professional makeup services at a high of $322 (which makes it hundreds more than the cost of other cities).


Photo Credit: CA Photography

5.) Providence, RI

A wedding in Providence, Rhode Island costs an average of $13,990 with all the expenditure averages coming close to those in other cities. However, hiring a wedding DJ was more expensive than any other city with a $780 average (apparently they know all the best songs for a wedding in Providence).


Photo Credit: George Street Photo & Video

6.) San Francisco, CA

Here comes California with it’s most expensive city for weddings, San Francisco, at $13,734. Since the Bay Area is quite an expensive place to begin with, it makes sense that SF has a spot on this list. Famous for it’s foodie lifestyle, it’s no surprise that catering is the most expensive item on the wedding planning agenda at $4,269.

wedding costs

Photo Credit: Caroline Studios

7.) San Jose, CA

Another California city makes the list. San Jose comes in at the 7th most expensive city, where weddings cost an average of $13,418. The biggest expense is a videographer at $1,520. However, this and other expenses fall in close proximity to other American city averages.


Photo Credit: Tyler Vu

8.) Cleveland, OH

The cost of a Cleveland wedding comes in very close behind San Jose at $13,416. Its lowest expense is hiring a makeup professional, while its highest expense is wedding flowers at a grand total of $1,825, which is among the highest in the country.


Photo Credit: Genevieve Nisly Photography

9.) Washington, D.C.

Washington, D.C. has some of the most reasonable prices out of this high-spending list. Oddly enough, hiring live music performers was $1,000 cheaper than in nearby Baltimore, MD.


Photo Credit: Mary Sarah Photography

10.) Minneapolis, MN

Rounding out the list at spot number 10, Minneapolis has more friendlier prices for weddings. Makeup costs reach a low of $161, however, live music expenses were higher than both San Jose and San Francisco weddings.


Photo Credit: Becca Dilley Photography

It’s important to keep in mind that wedding budgets incorporate many, many different factors that affect the amount of money that can be allocated to each necessity. The cost of wedding photographers, hair and makeup stylists, and the size of your guest list can affect your wedding budget. Choosing a location for your wedding can have a significant impact on your wedding budget, so be smart when selecting your venue.


All information gathered from Thumbtack Journal wedding statistics for 2016.
The Top 10 Most Expensive Cities in the U.S. for Weddings
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The Top 10 Most Expensive Cities in the U.S. for Weddings
These are the top 10 most expensive cities to have a wedding in the United States. With detailed wedding costs, you might be surprised who makes the list.

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