It's Valentine's Day, which means love is very much in the air. Under the influence of all that love, you might be tempted to pop the big question to your S.O. today, however, that may not be a decision you should make lightly, given the average cost of weddings these days. The Knot just released the results from its annual Real Wedding Study, and perhaps unsurprisingly given the wedding industrial complex, in 2017, the average cost of a wedding in America was $33,391.
In order to find out the average wedding cost last year, The Knot polled around 13,000 U.S. couples who were married in 2017. The resulting average price of $33,391 may seem like a jarring number, but it's actually down nearly $2,000 from 2016's average wedding cost. Last year, The Knot's similar poll showed that the average couple spent about $35,329 on their wedding day in 2016. True, when dealing with numbers this big, $2,000 seems somewhat insignificant, but savings are savings.
When planning the big day, it's important to know what you're getting yourself into. What exactly goes into that average price tag of $33,391? The Knot found that, on average, the biggest wedding expense in 2017 by far was the reception venue at $15,163. The smallest expense on the average budget was favors at $255.
If you're unable to resist the allure of proposing this Valentine's Day, you might be interested to know that getting married in some places is less expensive than it is in others. Just in case you wake up tomorrow morning panicked over how you're going to pay for your wedding — a real Valentine's Day hangover — remember that, in 2017, an average wedding in New Mexico cost $17,584. Even if you don't throw your nuptials in New Mexico, you may at least want to avoid tying the knot in Manhattan. Last year, the average cost of a Manhattan wedding was $76,944, which is well over double the national average.
Though The Knot's average figures are is a bit frightening, there are plenty of ways to get around spending that much, from elopement to city hall weddings and more. Even Valentine's Day hangovers can be cured.