Of life’s major milestones, the happiest must be the wedding. Months before, the blushing bride and her entourage (Mom, Aunts, besties, cousins, sisters, etc) decide what dress should she wear? What venue? What band or entertainment? Which caterer and what menus? Dad meanwhile is off in the corner calculating the cost of each decision.
Yes, a wedding is a happy occasion, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t potential problems. After all, weddings represent a considerable investment and have become big business. The Wedding Report states there are 2.1 million weddings in the U.S. each year, with a total value of more than $54 billion.
According to the 2020 American Wedding Survey from Brides.com, the average cost of a wedding in the U.S. is $28,964 with the actual amount varying by geography, preferences, and available budget. However, as the saying says: “the best laid plans of mice and men….”.
The Covid pandemic is an excellent example. The pandemic caused many planned (and paid for) weddings to be cancelled with many couples losing deposits placed on venues, caterers, and bands.
Though Covid may have been a once-in-a-lifetime situation, there are other kinds of event mishaps during event planning and execution creating financial loss for the bride and groom, or the family, when covering their own expenses.
Wedding insurance is available to help reduce the risk of unplanned whoopsies. For instance, covering presents damaged when over-exuberant dancers knocked the gift table into the wedding cake.
Depending on coverage required, wedding insurance could cost anywhere from $95 to more than $500. Travelers Insurance recommends purchasing coverage sufficient to cover the loss from a worst-case scenario if the wedding needs to be cancelled or rescheduled for some reason.
Wedding insurance usually covers non-refundable deposits and some purchases if circumstances require you to cancel or reschedule the wedding, assuming the circumstances are beyond your control. Getting cold feet and backing out of the wedding is typically not covered.
Wedding Day Problems
The bride found the perfect setting for her dream wedding. An antique restored farmhouse on a manor farm, which caught fire and burned to the ground days before the wedding. Wedding insurance would have covered the cost of cancelling the wedding, as the fire was outside of the insured control. Insurance will also cover venues that may be inaccessible due to weather, such as flooding after a hurricane. Other situations covered by insurance include banquet halls losing their license or going out of business.
Insurance covers rescheduling the wedding and the cost of items such as flowers, tent rentals and the reception. Some venues require proof of liability insurance. Some special event policies have endorsements which allow the rehearsal dinner, ceremony, and reception to also be included within the coverage.
Planning a wedding six months in advance is far enough out to only have a general idea of the weather.
In some parts of the mid-west, a late spring wedding could be in a sunny, 80-degree day, or be held in the middle of a snow or ice storm.
Wedding insurance will cover the cost of cancelling a wedding if conditions prevent the bride or groom, key family members or the majority of guests from getting to the wedding site.
This can be important if the wedding is planned to be a destination wedding to a remote island, or even if the plan is to have it in hurricane season or the middle of winter.
According to Travelers Insurance, 44% of wedding insurance claims are for vendors hired for the event but failed to perform as promised. Vendors may be caterers, officiant or limousine driver who fails to show up as promised. It may also cover a photographer’s camera bag stolen during the wedding or a dress shop or a florist who files for bankruptcy just before the wedding.
Insurance might cover a range of risk reduction including covering lost deposits or the cost of photo reshoot.
My mother always said, “to have a successful party, get very tipsy first thing”. That’s great but being a bit too tipsy could be the reason for inadvertent property damage. Say a reception at a historic venue has artwork or furnishings damaged, or an inebriated guest falls into the champagne table, damaging both the table and the Oriental rug underneath.
Travelers Insurance says 28% of its claims involve wedding-related property damage to a location.
Other coverages include:
Cancellation Coverage: Travelers Insurance states 8% of wedding claims involve illness or injury to the bride, groom, or a key member of the bridal party, requiring the wedding to be cancelled or rescheduled.
Bridal Attire: Travelers Insurance says 6% of its claims involve problems with bridal attire, with insurance covering a wedding gown that is lost, damaged or stolen.
Wedding insurance will also cover a bride or groom in the service who is unable to attend due to deployment, or having their leave revoked. Other coverage includes special wedding jewelry, liquor liability, wedding gifts that are stolen or damaged at the wedding, and personal liability covering accidents which occur during the event.
You should decide if you need wedding insurance based on numerous factors. The higher the overall event cost the higher the potential loss. Other situations such as a wedding participant in the service, or the event scheduling may cause more risk than others.
But, it’s nice to know you have options.
Aspen Insurance Agency is a family-run business in Denver, Colorado servicing clients nationwide. We work with multiple insurance carriers to offer our customers a wide variety of risk reduction coverage at the lowest possible cost. We offer a wide range of personal, auto insurance, commercial and professional insurance to residential and commercial insurance customers enabling the cheapest rates available. Call to speak to one of our insurance advisors for home or business insurance and see how painless insurance shopping can be.