Priceline’s 2022 Wedding Travel Report

May 13, 2022

Priceline’s Wedding Travel Report Reveals Consumers Spend A Full Month’s Salary Just To Attend One Wedding

Priceline’s report, which surveyed 1,000 Americans, reveals top wedding travel trends, average costs and highlights how factors like inflation are impacting wedding travel and consumer sentiment about spending money on wedding travel this year. 

Current State of Wedding-Related Travel

  • 79% of respondents plan to attend a wedding and 61% plan to attend a wedding-related event¹
     in the U.S. that requires travel in the next 12 months. 
  • Nearly six-in-ten (57%) plan on attending more weddings/wedding events this year than usual because they’ve missed out on so many during the pandemic.
  • 60% are invited to even more wedding/wedding-related events than usual this year because of Covid-19 delays/rescheduling.
  • 50% have even had to decline attending weddings/wedding-related events this year because there are so many events happening that they have multiple events in the same weekend.
  • 64% of guests say that Covid levels in the destination will impact their decision to travel for a wedding/wedding-related event.
  • About half (47%) book their flight and two-fifths (44%) book their hotel/accommodations more than two months in advance. 
      • Boomers (57%) are most likely to book their hotel/accommodations more than 2 months in advance compared to Gen X (43%), Millennials (40%) and Gen Z (48%).
  • The majority of Americans (57%) book their rental car up to six weeks ahead, but few (28%) book more than two months in advance. 

The Cost of Wedding-Related Travel

  • Consumers spend more than $2,700 on average just to attend a wedding—that’s roughly equivalent to a full month’s salary based on the median annual wage in the US‡².
  • Average spending on travel costs for additional wedding-related events, includes:
      • Engagement Party: $981
      • Bachelorette/bachelor party: $969
      • Bridal shower: $680
      • Gift: $525
  • Three-fourths (76%) are often surprised by how much attending wedding-related events cost as a guest.
  • 58% have chosen not to participate in a wedding-related party or event that required travel because of the cost.
  • Six-in-ten say that the high costs of attending weddings/wedding-related events has limited their ability to save for a vacation (61%) or a bucket list trip (59%).
  • 74% say they enjoy spending money on bachelor/bachelorette trips with close friends, but need to be conscious of budget.
  • 61% say that if they have to travel for a wedding/wedding-related event, they will spend less on the gift.
      • Especially Gen Z (74%) and Millennials (68%) compared to Gen X (56%) and Boomers (33%).
  • 79% say wedding events are a great excuse to travel and 75% agree that attending these events are a once in a lifetime experience(s) worth spending on.
  • Those supporting the bride (53%) were more likely to say that the money spent was not worth it vs. worth it (42%).

Travel Deals Are Priority…and Impact Our Travel Choices 

  • 81% say rising inflation makes finding a travel deal more important than ever.
  • 58% of Americans would rather find a good flight deal or a good travel deal (60%) than find the perfect outfit.
  • Singles would rather find a good deal on a hotel (66%) or flight (63%) than a date/plus one.
      • In fact, 65% of singles plan to attend without a date so that they are not responsible for their travel costs.
  • One-third find budgeting for attending an out of town wedding or wedding-related travel to be the most stressful part; and is especially stressful for Gen Z (39%).
  • 76% would arrive earlier and/or depart later to save money by avoiding peak travel days and times.
  • Instead of flying, 65% would try to organize a group road trip with family/friends to share and save on travel costs.
  • 79% would sign up for a travel rewards program to save and/or earn points on travel.

Wedding season is finally back in full swing. However, with inflation and rising prices, it’s proving costlier than ever to watch their loved ones say “I do,” making travel deals more important than ever. Having negotiated amazing travel deals for over 20 years, Priceline saves travelers more than one billion dollars every year (that’s $2,000 per minute!). So travelers never have to miss the moments that matter—weddings, bucket list trips, and everything in between.

About the Survey
Results are based on an online survey conducted between April 1st and April 10th, 2022 among 1,000 Americans, approximately half of whom were married in last 12 months or plan to marry in next 12 months, and approximately half of whom have attended or traveled to a wedding or wedding-related event in the last 12 months or plan to in the next 12 months. The results are balanced as it relates to age, gender, race/ethnicity, income, and region in the United States.

¹A wedding-related event refers to a bachelor/bachelorette party, engagement party, rehearsal dinner, bridal shower, group honeymoon (buddymoon), honeymoon, etc. 
²Based on the Social Security Administration “National Average Wage Index” for the 2019 median average US wage receiving semi-monthly payments.
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