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  • Writer's pictureKlara Mike

Unlocking the Romance: The Cost of Getting Married in France

France, with its romantic allure and timeless charm, beckons couples to embark on a wedding adventure amidst its iconic landscapes. However, planning a wedding in this enchanting destination involves navigating costs with finesse. This is a subject that planners don't really talk about until you book them, yet this is something that every couple would like to know! The reason why us, wedding planners, don't touch this subject in blogposts or on social media is simple: The cost of the wedding is very unique to the couple - given that your preferences will be totally different to other couples - and vendors' prices can be very different by region. And that's also a reason why it's hard to rely on other couple's experiences.

Despite all the above, I will attempt to give you some answers even if any numbers in this article would have to be taken with a pinch of salt. However if you are interested to receive a personalised budget estimate you can contact me by clicking this link and I will be happy to help you out.

Let's break down the expenses and unveil the magic behind the price tag of a French wedding. If you need more help with how to build your wedding budget, see our previous post on the subject >HERE<.

1. Venue Splendor:

   French chateaux, vineyard estates, and quaint villages offer a dreamlike setting. Prices vary, but expect a significant portion of your budget to be dedicated to securing the perfect venue. As an example: an average size Chateau suitable for a wedding size of 100 people but with no or limited accommodation will charge €16,000 or above. This price will usually include an entire weekend with Friday evening arrival and Monday morning departure. You will find lower prices further away from airports and undiscovered gems but this is a good indication in 2024 what to expect.

2. Gourmet Delights:

   French cuisine is renowned worldwide, and your wedding menu should reflect this. Gastronomic experiences come at a price, especially when paired with exquisite wines. Most caterers would offer you diffent menu options but you can calculate €80-100 per person for your meal and you will need to dedicate additional funds for beverages.

3. Floral Elegance:

   From fragrant lavender fields to lush gardens, floral arrangements are a must. Factor in costs for bouquets, centerpieces, and any additional decorative elements. This is the category where I will not be able to give any figures as an estimate on florals have SO many different factors only a florist can give you an accurate number.

4. Photography and Videography:

   Capturing the essence of your day is priceless. Invest in talented photographers and videographers to create lasting memories. You can expect a photographer charging around €3500-4000 for a whole day (which is usually about 10 hours). There are photographers who do charge more and others who would charge less so if you put this figure in your wedding budget you will be safe.

5. Ceremony costs:

   Navigating the legalities of a French wedding involves paperwork and small fees, however, to get married legally in France as a foreigner is not simple. You would need either proof of residency or family connection such as a parent living in France. Therefore our first recommendation is always (as it is the simplest and many times the only option) to get married legally where you reside and have a symbollic ceremony in France. On average you can budget about €1,500 or more for a celebrant.

6. Guest Experience:

   Transport, accommodations, and entertainment for guests contribute to the overall cost. When you are budgeting for your musicians, it is super important that you know the price difference between live bands and DJs. Always ask whether lightning and equipment is included in the price or not. You can budget €2000 or more for a DJ and €5000 or more for a live band.

7. Attire and Beauty:

   French weddings are synonymous with style. Account for the cost of your wedding attire, accessories, and any beauty services you may require, hair and make up artist have varying prices this is something that really changes by region. In the country you can set aside €1,000 or more for a stylist in Paris you can double this.

8. Planner's Expertise:

   While not mandatory, hiring a local wedding planner can be invaluable. Their knowledge, contacts, and expertise can streamline the planning process and potentially save huge costs in the long run. Most planners have a minimum fee or charge by percentage. On average you can set aside €7,000 or more for a full planning.

9. Unforeseen Expenses:

   No wedding is without surprises. Allocate a portion of your budget for unforeseen expenses or last-minute adjustments.

In conclusion, the cost of getting married in France is a mosaic of experiences and choices. Whether you opt for a lavish celebration or an intimate affair, each penny spent contributes to the creation of a timeless love story against the backdrop of France's romantic allure.

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