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"Kiwi Wedding Planning: Budgeting for the Perfect Day in 2023"

Updated: Mar 20, 2023

Every year, couples around the world dream of having the perfect wedding. Couples planning a New Zealand wedding in the year 2023 may be wondering how much the special day will cost. Here’s an outline of the average cost of a wedding in New Zealand in 2023 to ensure your budget is realistic.

A bride and groom hold hands on their wedding day
Planning a Wedding in New Zealand

Venue: One of the biggest expenses in your wedding budget will be the venue. Whether it's a building or a marquee, venues for weddings in New Zealand can range from $6,000 to $20,000, with rural venues generally costing a bit more than city venues.

Photography and Videography: A professional photographer and videographer will take beautiful photos and videos of your big day! In New Zealand, these can cost anywhere from $2,500 to $4,500, depending on the type of photography or videography you’d like.

Flowers: From bouquets of roses to decorative wildflowers on tables, you can spend as much or as little on flowers as you’d like. On average, you can expect to spend around $1,000 - $1,500 on flowers for your wedding.

Bridal Gown and Accessories: Whether you want a traditional wedding dress or something more modern, you’ll want to factor in the cost of your dress, veil and accessories when planning your budget. On average, a dress and its accessories can cost around $1500-$2500. A more affordable option could be to consider hiring a dress, an option which starts at around $200. Whilst the focus is usually on the Bride and her dress, don't overlook the cost of outfitting the Groom and the rest of the bridal party.

A mannequin models a wedding dress.
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Wedding Celebrant: A registry celebrant typically charges $90 for their services if you are having a registry ceremony. However, marriage or civil union celebrants may charge up to around $800 or more, depending on the services they offer. These services may include providing readings, reciting wording of wedding vows, attending rehearsals, coordinating with photographers or videographers, and travel expenses.

Limo or Other Transport: Depending on your taste in vehicles and location in New Zealand, limo hire begins at approximately $200-$300 per hour with most firms offering discounted prices for each additional hour. If you are having guests travel to a wedding in the countryside, you might consider chartering a bus to transport them safely. Depending on locations and times required, this can cost between $500-$2500.

Catering and Beverages: Whether you’re having a sit-down dinner or a buffet, you’ll need to pay for catering and beverages. In New Zealand, catering costs around $100 – $150 per person.

Music: To make the day even more memorable, you can choose to hire live music, a DJ or a band. Depending on the amount of time they are required for, travel costs, equipment required etc, good quality entertainment will typically cost around $1500-$5000.

A DJ performs for  wedding guests
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Stationery: From save the dates to your thank you cards, stationery can vary widely in price. On average, you can expect to spend around $500 on stationery for your wedding.

Inflation, Supply and Demand: Inflation and supply/demand can both strongly affect the cost of a wedding. Rising costs of goods, services, and labor can result in higher prices for wedding venues, catering, decorations, photography, entertainment, and other vendors. Additionally, if there is high demand for certain services or venues, the prices may be increased due to increased competition. It is important to research and compare different options before committing to a cost in order to ensure you are getting the best value.

So, what are the most important items to spend money on for a wedding in New Zealand in 2023?

To ensure you and your guests have a truly memorable day, it is important to allocate some funds to the key items - venue, food and entertainment. A great venue and delicious food will provide a beautiful backdrop for your big day, while entertainment ensures the occasion is fun and full of smiles! Allowing yourself an appropriate budget for these items will ensure your wedding is the perfect day to remember.

When planning a wedding, which is most important to you?

  • 0%Venue Hire

  • 0%Photography/Videography

  • 0%Catering/Beverages

  • 0%Music/Entertainment

You can vote for more than one answer.

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​About the Author

DJ IDL, wearing sunglasses and hat posing for a photo
Des Lynch - NZ DJ & Musician

​Des Lynch is a professional DJ and musician (guitar & vocals) who has been performing at weddings, bars, conferences and parties for over 25 years.


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