Most Bridesmaids Feel Pressure to Spend Money on Weddings—and It's Ruining Their Friendships

Maybe think twice about picking the most expensive bridesmaid dresses

Updated 07/22/19

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It's no secret that weddings are expensive: There's a venue to rent, caterers to hire, flowers to buy, and, of course, a dress to say yes to. But while the couple (and, often, their parents) bear the majority of the wedding expenses, their bridesmaids and groomsmen aren't exactly getting off scot-free.

According to a new report from CompareCards, bridal parties feel plenty of pressure to drop major chunks of change on their friends' and family members' weddings. This financial pressure isn't just sending bridesmaids and groomsmen into debt — it's also straining their relationships with the bride and groom, and, in some cases, keeping them from attending weddings at all.

Per CompareCards, more than 60 percent of maids of honor and nearly as many bridesmaids, plus half of best men and 43 percent of groomsmen, feel this pressure to spend on weddings, and a significant portion of them say all that spending hurt their friendships. The highest costs reportedly came from attire, followed by the bachelor and bachelorette parties, travel to and from the wedding, and the bridal shower. And that's not even including all the gifts bridal parties have to bring to each event, accommodations at the wedding, and all those other charges that can really add up.

Of those who had been in a bridal party in the past two years, a full third said they regret the money they spent doing so, with maids of honor feeling the most regret. It makes sense, since a shockingly high 43 percent of MOHs said they incurred debt from the role; 38 percent of best men agreed, as did 35 percent of bridesmaids and 30 percent of groomsmen.

Overall, 37 percent of those surveyed admitted to turning down an invite to be in a wedding in recent years due to costs — and really, can you blame them?

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