Who Pays for the Bridal Shower? (and Other Bridal Shower FAQs) (2024)

Who Pays for the Bridal Shower? (and Other Bridal Shower FAQs) (1)Photo: Bella Bridesmaids Dallas/Meraki Weddings

Bridal showers are steeped in tradition. For over a century now, close friends and loved ones have gathered to toast and celebrate each bride-to-be.

The sentiment remains the same today, yet etiquette has changed since the 1860s. Years ago, if the bride’s parents disapproved of the groom and refused to provide a dowry, they expected bridal shower guests to pay for the big day.

Talk about asking a lot from your friends!

This article addresses frequently asked questions, such as who pays for the bridal shower, who hosts, average costs, how to establish a budget, and more!


What Is a Bridal Shower?


While the exact origins of the bridal shower are still unclear, some believe it may have originated in the Netherlands in the 1600s. The original purpose was to provide a dowry for a bride from a low-income family, ensuring she had the homemaking essentials.

Traditional bridal showers today offer a chance to celebrate the bride and her upcoming nuptials.

Gift-giving is still a part of the celebration. Bridal shower gifts tend to be things like home goods, champagne, and personalized picture frames — unique and special Etsy finds.

Key Takeaway: A bridal shower is a party for the bride, and it’s customary for guests to bring a gift priced within the $50-$75 range.


Looking for a bridal shower dress? Here are some of our favorites!


Who Throws the Bridal Shower?


One of the best things about modern bridal showers (and weddings in general!) is a chance to mix tradition with personal preference. There’s no longer an air of stiff stale formality.

Today, it’s common for the maid of honor or matron of honor — sometimes in conjunction with the mother of the bride — to plan the shower. However, the bridesmaids, wedding party, and the bride's family can all pitch in if necessary.

Another modern trend is to make bridal showers gender inclusive. This is what we call a “wedding shower,” a celebration where everyone is welcome and invited to partake in the festivities.

Key Takeaway: Many bridal showers are a collaboration between the maid of honor (or plural maid of honors) and the mother of the bride. Yet, no “rules” prohibit close family members, the wedding party, and friends from helping.


How Much Does a Typical Bridal Shower Cost?


Who Pays for the Bridal Shower? (and Other Bridal Shower FAQs) (2)Photo: Bella Bridesmaids Oklahoma City/Shelbi Jo

The cost of a bridal shower depends on a few things, like:

• How big is the guest list?

• Where’s the location?

• What type of food are you serving?

• What will the decorations and entertainment entail?


By calculating the number of guests (the bride provides the details of who to invite), you can use that figure to help gauge how much you’ll need to spend on food. Depending on your budget, you may decide to go all out or focus on cost-effective finger foods instead.

According to the website Cost Helper, multiply the number of guests by $10-$15 to determine what you should expect to spend on a lower budget.

You’d do the same for a high budget, except multiply the number of guests by $50-$150.

Popular bridal shower themes include brunch, a tea party, and a garden party and include bridal shower favors — usually small items. However, the reality is that a bridal shower can be as creative as those hosting it.

Key Takeaway: The average cost for a gathering of 40 guests is anywhere from $400 to $6,000. Don’t forget to add the cost of an event space if you’re renting one.


Who Pays for the Bridal Shower?


Modern bridal shower etiquette states that the shower host is responsible for paying for it.

Depending on the circ*mstances, this can be a lot for one person to handle, and there is nothing wrong with delegating both costs and duties.

But what if there’s a bridesmaid who’s a whiz at DIY and decorating — and loves it? Well, then, she can be the one to select and set up the bridal shower decorations and table centerpieces.

Another can be in charge of bridal shower games and put together some fun game prizes for the winners.

Having multiple people working together is an excellent way to take advantage of each person's unique skill set.

But beware, when a handful of people get involved, it’s key to have someone overseeing bridal shower planning as a whole. So find a go-to person to coordinate and make the day as lovely and special as the guest of honor.

Key Takeaway: The host is the one who usually pays for the bridal shower. However, if needed, others can help, too. The planning process can be a beautiful collaboration between the maid of honor, the bridesmaids, the bride's mother, and the groom's mother.

And yes, even the bride can join in if she wants!


Is the Bridal Shower Host Also Supposed to Provide a Gift?


Who Pays for the Bridal Shower? (and Other Bridal Shower FAQs) (3)Photo: Bella Bridesmaids Sacramento/Natachajolene

It’s customary for the bridal shower host to give the bride a gift. It can be a small yet meaningful gift, or even something practical newlyweds can use in their home.

Key Takeaway: Yes, the expectation is that the host does give a gift — though it doesn’t need to be outlandish or extravagant.


Can the Mother of the Bride Host a Bridal or Wedding Shower?


The mother of the bride is more than welcome to host the bridal shower. Friends of the bride and loved ones can as well. There are no rules on who can host!

Key Takeaway: Who hosts? Anyone can host.


What Are the Best Places to Host a Bridal Shower?


Bridal showers are usually at the host’s home. Yet, you can really host them anywhere.

Book a favorite restaurant for brunch. Or, head to a brewery or winery, or arrange something at a local spa.

Take budget into account, of course. Hosting in someone’s home usually makes the most sense economically — but again, there are no rules or limits to where you can hold it.

Key Takeaway: Bridal showers are usually at the shower host's home, but the reality is you can hold them anywhere.


What’s the Difference Between a Bridal Shower, Wedding Shower, and a Bachelorette Party?


Who Pays for the Bridal Shower? (and Other Bridal Shower FAQs) (4)Photo: Bella Bridesmaids Philadelphia/Hanri Human

With all the pre-wedding events, it can be hard to keep each one straight.

Many couples kick off the wedding festivities after becoming engaged with an aptly named engagement party. This is a chance for both families to meet, future bridesmaids to mix and mingle, and everyone gets to celebrate and cheer on the upcoming wedding day.

A bridal shower and a wedding shower are essentially the same things, except a wedding shower is coed. Everyone is welcome!

The bachelorette party tends to be a no-holds-barred fun night out. This one is typically only for bridesmaids and perhaps close family members who don’t have an early bedtime.

Also, some brides love to gather their wedding party together and head out on a quest for the perfect bridesmaids’ dresses and a wedding dress.

Key Takeaway: The engagement party starts everything off. It’s usually a celebratory dinner with close friends and family members.The bridal or wedding shower (coed) is a chance to celebrate the upcoming wedding and enjoy food, drinks, and games. The bachelorette party is a fun night out for bridesmaids.

Related: 7 Different Bachelorette Itineraries From Wild to Chill


Can the Bridal Shower Be a Surprise?


The bridal shower can be a surprise. But, of course, the bride needs to provide the guest list.

Some brides may not appreciate a surprise or want to have input in their shower and be part of the planning. Additionally, some people hate surprises.

Key Takeaway: It can be a surprise, but not everyone likes surprises.


Conclusion


From the engagement to the actual wedding reception, wedding planning can feel a little overwhelming.

The biggest key to managing it all? Remember what it’s for: a chance to bring together best friends, family, and loved ones in the ultimate celebration of love. There’s nothing better in the world.

Discover the answers to all your wedding day questions. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest!

Who Pays for the Bridal Shower? (and Other Bridal Shower FAQs) (2024)

FAQs

Who Pays for the Bridal Shower? (and Other Bridal Shower FAQs)? ›

Key Takeaway: The host is the one who usually pays for the bridal shower. However, if needed, others can help, too. The planning process can be a beautiful collaboration between the maid of honor, the bridesmaids, the bride's mother, and the groom's mother. And yes, even the bride can join in if she wants!

Who pays for the bridal shower? ›

In short, the host is the one who pays for the bridal shower—or at least some of it. Most commonly, this is the maid of honor, but the couple's relatives, friends or even the to-be-weds themselves can all pitch in to cover the cost of the wedding shower.

Who is responsible for a bridal shower? ›

The Traditional Bridal Shower Host

The maid of honor traditionally takes on the role of chief shower planner. But she isn't a one-woman show: She relies on the bridesmaids to help her with planning logistics. On the day of, the girls run the party, making sure everything goes smoothly and that guests are taken care of.

Who pays for Jack and Jill's party? ›

Historically, a Jack and Jill was a celebration before the wedding in order to raise money for the couple. An example of this would be holding a party and charging invited guests an admissions fee of ~$5, which would go toward the engaged couple.

What is the average cost of a bridal shower? ›

That works out at $300 to $800 for a 20-person party but can go as high as $150 per person or $3,000 for a 20-person shower. Based on these estimates and an average bridal shower guest list of 35-50 people, a reasonable budget for a bridal shower is between $350 and $7,500.

What do the groom's parents pay for? ›

The groom's family traditionally paid for all costs associated with the rehearsal dinner and honeymoon, wedding day transportation, and the officiant. The groom paid for the bride's engagement ring, wedding ring, and groomsmen gifts. It is also common for the groom's family to pay for the alcohol at the reception.

Who pays for daughter's bridal shower? ›

Who Is Responsible For Paying For The Shower? Those who are hosting the shower are responsible for paying for the shower costs. This might include venue costs, the hosts' gifts, decorations, food, beverages, and other event expenses.

Does the mother of the bride throw the bridal shower? ›

Traditionally, the mother of the bride doesn't host the bridal shower (the maid of honor typically assumes the chief shower-planning role), however, your daughter will likely want you to be a part of the celebration.

What is the groom's responsibility for the bridal shower? ›

Modern etiquette suggests that he show up toward the end of the shower to say hello and help stock up the car full of gifts. Some men even drop in for a few fun games. Older tradition suggests that he arrive with a bouquet of flowers for his bride.

What does mother of bride pay for? ›

Not only does the bride's family pay for the wedding day outfit and accessories (veil, shoes, jewelry and more), but they're also responsible for the bride's wardrobe for all of the pre-wedding events (the shower, bach party, rehearsal dinner and honeymoon).

Who should not host a bridal shower? ›

Traditional etiquette dictates that the maid of honor—not the mother of the bride—should host the shower. Nancy is a freelance writer for MarthaStewart.com. Some etiquette rules were meant to fade away into oblivion, like the one about family members of the bride not hosting her bridal shower.

Does the mother of the groom host a bridal shower? ›

The Mother of the Groom Can Co-Host the Bridal Shower

Tombs says this event is generally hosted by the mother of the bride or the bride's closest friends. If the mother of the groom is very close with the bride, then she may feel as though it's her duty to pitch in, too.

Do bridesmaids help pay for a bridal shower? ›

The Bridal Shower or Wedding Shower

If you're not sure whether bridesmaids pay for the bridal shower, touch base with the maid of honor or the bride's mother. While the host often foots the bill, extra costs for food, decor and activities may be split up among the bridesmaids.

How many hours is a typical bridal shower? ›

Bridal showers typically last 2-4 hours and are not considered an all-day event. Although, depending on the type of shower you are hosting the time can vary. Most showers will either take place in the morning and serve as a brunch, or in the afternoon served with lunch or finger foods.

What is a good amount to give for a bridal shower? ›

According to Opperman, bridal shower gifts tend to be less expensive than wedding gifts. "Many people spend around $50 to $75, whereas closer friends and family may spend upwards of $100," she says.

Does the mother of the bride plan the bridal shower? ›

Traditionally, the mother of the bride doesn't host the bridal shower (the maid of honor typically assumes the chief shower-planning role), however, your daughter will likely want you to be a part of the celebration.

What is the mother of the bride responsible for? ›

A key mother of the bride task on the day of the wedding is to host the reception with the other parents. Take the time to chat to guests, thank them for coming, ensure everything is happening as it should be and just generally make sure the day is running smoothly.

What is etiquette for a bridal shower? ›

Since showers are intended for the bride's nearest and dearest, every shower guest must already be on the wedding guest list. Because it's understood that guests should bring a present to a shower, it's not appropriate to invite people whom you don't plan to include in the wedding.

Do guests pay to attend bridal shower? ›

Only the hosts should pay for the shower. No other guest should pay for it. The bride should not be hosting a shower in her own honor, so she should not be expected to pay either.

Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Tish Haag

Last Updated:

Views: 5753

Rating: 4.7 / 5 (47 voted)

Reviews: 86% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Tish Haag

Birthday: 1999-11-18

Address: 30256 Tara Expressway, Kutchburgh, VT 92892-0078

Phone: +4215847628708

Job: Internal Consulting Engineer

Hobby: Roller skating, Roller skating, Kayaking, Flying, Graffiti, Ghost hunting, scrapbook

Introduction: My name is Tish Haag, I am a excited, delightful, curious, beautiful, agreeable, enchanting, fancy person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.