2008 UK Wedding Industry Statistics

CONDÉ NAST BRIDES have released their UK Wedding Industry survey results, and there are a number of positive figures showing. Here are some of the most interesting points:

  • The average overall cost of getting married is £22,858 (up from £21,901 in 2007)
  • Couples in London and the South East spend on average £23,932
  • Couples in Wales and the South West spend on average – £18,991
  • 53% of couples pay for most of the wedding costs
  • 35% of brides would consider cosmetic surgery for their wedding (an increase of 21% year on year)
  • 5% couples in the UK will sign a pre-nuptual agreement (7% of Scotish couples,6% of Londoners, 5% of Welsh couples and 2% of those in the Midlands and North/North East)
  • 88% of brides will take their husband’s surname once married. 3% will keep their own, while 7% of couples are combining surnames.
  • The average length of an engagement remains 18 months
  • 93% of couples plan to live together, or are already doing so, prior to their wedding.
  • The average engagement ring costs £2,090 (a 6.1% increase from 2007)
  • 61% of brides choose their own engagement ring
  • 3% of grooms will not wear a wedding ring
  • 45% of couples chose a religious ceremony
  • Brides in East Anglia spend most on flowers, at £750, spending 44% more than the UK average spend of £520.
  • Brides paid an average of £1,200 for their dress.
  • 17% of couples have their honeymoon in Europe.
  • Couples spend an average of £3,860 on their honeymoon.
  • The average age to get married for a bride is 29 and that of a groom is 31

23 Responses to “2008 UK Wedding Industry Statistics”

  1. kathleen says:

    What is the TOTAL SIZE in Revenue of the Wedding Industry in the UK?

    Thanks for your help.

  2. Katrina says:

    Hi Kathleen, I’m not sure off the top of my head, but I’ll look into it and get back to you.


  3. Liz says:

    Hi, are there any figures for 2009 yet or 2010 2011 projections? Thanks

  4. Lisa says:

    Hi there

    Any chance you could point me in the direction of where you found these stats? I’ve been on the CONDÉ NAST BRIDES website but can’t find them.

    I’m writing an article about the wedding industry for Marketing magazine and I’m looking for up to date statistics for the UK industry.


  5. charlie says:

    hiya.. your statistics dont mention the number of weddings from 2008..
    is there any way to find out ive only managed to find upto 2007 on directgov
    my presentation topic is on the impact of the recession on weddings, im starting to think its had a very low impact.
    thanks xx

  6. Katrina says:

    Hi Lisa and Charlie,

    This was a while ago, from memory – it was a press release by Conde Nast.
    The official statistics for the number UK Weddings registered in 2008 aren’t yet available, as far as I know.
    But if you wanted to use US statistics as a guide, they have a more up to date set of results here: US Wedding Statistics.
    I hope you manage to find what you need,



  7. charlotte says:

    hiya, i was wondering if maybe you could put up a graph of some sort to make the infomation clearer it would help alot

  8. charmane says:


    Do you know what the statistics are for women who get married while pregnant? and what the total revenue is for this market?


  9. Kate says:

    Hi Charmane,
    There were 20,000 UK brides who got married last year whilst expecting a baby. This represents ten percent of women under 45, so it is a significant portion of the wedding market. This seems to be a growing trend with one in six American brides also expecting on their wedding day. more and more designers are looking to include maternity styles in their ranges so that mums to be can look and feel fantastic.

  10. Kate says:

    Hi Charlotte,
    so sorry, it was never the intention to overlook your comment about the statistics article. The information is not really something that can be shown in graph form as it does not have sufficient detail for a comparison to be shown. we are looking at some other information sources to see if we can show the 2009 statistics more clearly and hopefully we can incorporate a graph in to that article.

  11. Sy says:

    Hi, do you know what percentage of wedding has weddign insurace?


  12. Kate says:

    Hi Sy,
    there has been an increase in couples taking out specific wedding insurance in the last few years. Out of 300,000 weddings in 2007 only 20% of them were estimated to have been insured according to industry statistics. There are companies who can offer cover for cancellation, loss of deposits, damage to attire, wedding gifts etc. and they advise that you should look at early cover if you are paying large deposits. Check any existing homeowners policy as some can cover a sudden increase in contents cover for wedding gifts on payment of an extra premium rather than taking out specific wedding insurance. The best advice would be to contact the insurers and get some quotes to cover the elements that you are concerned about and then you will be able to relax on the big day.

  13. Megan says:

    Hi, I was wondering if there are any statistics on how many couples use the services of wedding planners or co-ordinators to help organise their weddings?


  14. Kate says:

    Hi Megan,

    Wedding Planners have been around since the 1950′s and have seen a huge increase in the use of their services over the last few years. According to the Association of Bridal Consultants 270,000 Americans used a wedding co ordinator in 2006. It is a newer idea in the UK with couples realising that this service is not restricted to the rich and famous and with 20/30 % of UK couples using a planner in 2008. People are waiting longer to marry and have busy careers and families taking up their time, so it could be a wise investment when the ‘average wedding’ takes an estimated 250 hours of organisation.

    Hope this helps!

  15. Al says:

    Hi there Kate
    I know the question was asked sometime ago but I was just wondering whether there are any more up to date stats and facts covering 2009/2010? I am writing a piece on employment opportunities in the UK wedding industry, looking at the kinds of jobs available, career paths, skills requirements etc and am after some stats and facts to support – in particular any info on the size of the industry, how it has fared during the recession/ prospects for growth, which ‘service sectors’ are recruiting, average cost of a wedding etc etc – basically anything which could help entice jobseekers into potential work eg I see from above answer that in 2008/9 20-30% of UK couples used a planner – has this changed in the last year, and what does it look like for years ahead? What has driven this trend? Are you (or anyone out there!) able to help at all?
    Many thanks

  16. Kate says:

    Hi Al,

    I will do a bit of research for you on this and see what I can come up with. The reason that the use of planners may have increased is because people have higher expectations for their perfect day and want the help of the industry professionals, the other factor is the ‘time-poor’ generation who have got the money to spend, but have too many committments to make the arrangements themselves. Watch this space for further updates on this topic.

    Thanks, Kate

  17. Al says:

    That’s great Kate – many thanks. I am alos particularly interested in the size of the industry, any growth drivers/ trends and career opps if it is possible to factor that in too? Most grateful
    Al x

  18. Hi Kate. I notice the comments span several months do new stats might be available later this year? Was curious to find out thecurrent average spend for wedding photography and current numbers of weddings taking place in the UK. xx

  19. Harriet says:

    Hi Kate

    I know it has been asked already but I am looking for 2009-2010 stats and projections regarding weddings in the UK. I am in the initial stages of setting up my own wedding stationary design company and am compiling information for my business plan. Any help would be much appreciated or any hints where else I could look.

    Kind Regards

    Harriet x

  20. Kate says:

    Hi Elaine,
    The comments do span quite a few months now and we try to get the answers to peoples queries into a reply as soon as we can. Depending on the question, this can take a few minutes or a few weeks as we like to be sure that the information we give out is reliable. We are compiling some stats at present, so keep watching and hopefully we will be able to give you some figures.
    Thanks, Kate

  21. Kate says:

    Hi Harriet,
    It is good to know what sort of information people need so we can keep the site content relevant so watch this space for the update on statistics when it is ready. Have you had any assistance from your bank or a small business advisor for your business plan? The Citizens Advice or a local Federation of Small Businesses may also be a good source of help for you.

  22. Kelly says:


    I was wondering if you had any statistics on hair and beauty services for brides (and bridal parties) i.e demand for and how much this industry is worth. I have done some local research but just wanted to ask if there were any official, nationwide statistics available. Thanks very much if you can help – Kelly x

  23. Kate says:

    Hi Kelly,
    We experience the same problem when looking for statistics, even using the Office for National Statistics, but we are in the long process of putting some details together in response to several requests for stats over the last few months. This information will be posted on our blog when it is complete. I did see beauty stats for the industry at http://www.habia.org, but they are from November 2008 so I am not sure if these would be any use for you, but perhaps it will give you a starting point.

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