Certified financial planner Wes Moss provides personal finance advice and accessible investment strategies. His guest post appears here Monday mornings.
With all that’s happened over the last week or so – from the death of Bin Laden to a report showing nearly half of all Americans are struggling due to higher gas prices – that little wedding in London 2 billion of us watched may seem like the distant past; however, I didn’t want to miss the opportunity to talk about its magnificent cost – in the middle of a debt crisis that continues to engulf Europe.
Remember all those headlines about fiscal irresponsibility and government waste from Greece to Ireland to Portugal to Great Britain?
The British must not read the papers. Their government just threw a blowout wedding party that would make even Donald Trump jealous.
I know what you’re thinking: So what? Surely, the price tag for one measly wedding can’t be more than a blip on this already-messy fiscal radar screen, right?
According to the International Monetary Fund, the United Kingdom’s gross domestic product is around $2.3 trillion per year. So giving everybody a day off to celebrate the royal wedding costs the British economy about $9 billion.
And we’re just getting started:
• Public services and security: $35 million
• Parties and the honeymoon: $20 million
• Bride’s dress: $50,000
• Maid of honor’s dress: $33,000
That’s about 300,000 times what the average American wedding costs: between $25,000 and $30,000.
Friday’s bash in London was a nice wedding, horse trip and all. But I’m not sure it was worth $9 billion — more than the total GDP of The Bahamas. I hope Will and Kate send the British people a nice thank-you note, maybe even bring them a souvenir from the honeymoon.
Are you thinking about how much that wedding you just went to in Atlanta cost? Planning on getting married in the next year or so? I’ve found important (and fun) tool that will help: the Wedding Cost Estimator.
Other good links:
• Bargain Hunter: How frugal brides and grooms get creative
• Clark Howard: Don’t go into debt for your wedding
What do you think: Can you still have a “royal” wedding here in the United States for less than $25,000? Is the cost worth the occasion?
– By Wes Moss, for Atlanta Bargain Hunter