77% of Irish Couples Prefer Cash as Wedding Gift, says results of weddingsonline survey



77% of Irish Couples Prefer Cash as Wedding Gift

weddingsonline, the country’s most popular wedding website have just announced the findings of their latest annual wedding survey.

The average total budget for a wedding including the honeymoon is up 6% on last year at €22,531. 28% look to take out a loan to help cover the cost and 22% share the costs with their parents. Religious weddings are still the most popular type of wedding ceremony (72.5%) however humanist weddings (9.5%) and civil ceremonies (18%) have increased by 6% since last year. When asked what their preference would be when it comes to wedding gifts, an impressive 77% said they would prefer cash.

This year’s findings from the weddingsonline survey, based on over 2,000 participants in January 2016, capture the current trends towards weddings in Ireland.

  • The average total budget for a wedding in 2016 including the honeymoon cost is €22,531 (up 6% on last year).
  • 45% spend over €60 per guest on the meal (increase of 18% on last year) while the average price per head is €61.
  • 38% go over budget.
  • On average couples invite 156 guests to their Big Day and 23% opt for a bigger party with over 200 guests.
  • 28% take out a loan to help cover the cost, 22% share the costs with their parents and 72% use their savings.
  • Non-Religious weddings are getting more and more popular (up 6% on last year) – 18% opted for a civil ceremony, 5% for a humanist wedding while 72.5% opted for a church wedding.
  • Hotels (63%) are still the most popular type of wedding venue followed by Country Houses (17%) and Castles (8%). However, this year we are seeing an increase in weddings taking place in restaurants, marquees or other alternative venues.
  • December is still the most popular month to get engaged (26%) with a slight increase on last year (7%).
  • On average couples wait 18 months between their engagement and wedding (19 months in 2015) and 4% wait over 2 years.
  • Saturday is still the most popular day to get married (42%) followed by Friday (39%) and Thursday (10.4%).
  • Irish couples’ favourite time of the year to get wed is Summer – July is the most popular month to get married this year (15.7%) followed by September (11.9%) and August (11.6%).
  • The average number of bridesmaids is 3 for each wedding.
  • The average age for brides tying the knot is 31 years of age while the groom’s average age is 33 years of age.
  • More couples are opting for a wedding in Ireland. 8% of couples opted for a wedding abroad while 27% considered a destination wedding but went for a wedding at home instead.
  • 90% of newlyweds choose to honeymoon abroad and 55% of them delay the honeymoon for a few months following the wedding.
  • The top honeymoon destinations are the United States, Mexico and the Maldives.
  • 42% of couples opt for a mini-moon in Ireland.
  • Social Media and Weddings: 15.4% of couples do not want to see their wedding images shared on social media, while 38% want to post the first photo themselves and 6% don’t mind if their wedding images are being shared online. The most popular platforms to plan a wedding are Pinterest (71% – up 7% on last year), Facebook (52%), Instagram (20.6% – up 69% on last year) and weddingsonline (92%).
  • 62% of couples spend over 3 hours a week planning their wedding.
  • 84% of brides said they would take their spouse’s name while 33% of grooms surveyed said that they would be willing to do the same.
  • 77% said they would prefer cash as a wedding gift and 20% don’t mind what they receive.
  • The average spend on each category was as follows:
Category Budget
Wedding Dress€1,622
Wedding band€1,406
Ceremony Music€345
Make Up Artist€320
Hair Stylist€275
Transport (Car/ Horse & carriage)€441
Bridesmaids Dresses€541
Hen/Stag party€642
Wedding celebrant€285

Some of the regrets expressed by the surveyed brides and grooms included stressing about the little things, not delegating more and not taking more time to pick their bridesmaids. Ouch!


Launched in 2000, weddingsonline has become Ireland’s busiest wedding community and recently expanded into the UAE and India. Over 80% of all engaged couples in Ireland use weddingsonline at some point in their wedding plans. weddingsonline is popular for its lively forums, online wedding directory, competitions, real weddings and daily planning tips and advice. Over 1000 wedding industry suppliers have made weddingsonline their marketing partner in Ireland.

For further media information please contact:
Jonathan Bryans
Tel: 01 883 9275 / email: [email protected]

Main photo courtesy of Martina California