Wedding Loans

The average wedding costs $24,723, based on research from ValuePenguin. But let’s be honest. Not everyone has that kind of money lying around, and your family may not be able to contribute. If you need help paying for your wedding, a personal loan can fill in the gap. 

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Taking out a loan to pay for your wedding

Using a personal loan to pay for a wedding gives you more autonomy to plan the celebration you want. After all, when you lean on your parents or others to pay for your wedding, they may feel entitled to making decisions like who’s invited to the wedding and which caterers are hired.

Using a personal loan for wedding expenses doesn’t come without downsides, though. The biggest drawback to taking out a loan to pay for your wedding is that you will pay interest on your wedding expenses. If you’re already paying tens of thousands of dollars to get married, you probably don’t want to pay much on top of that.

Estimate your wedding loan monthly payments based on loan amount, APR and the length of the loan using our personal loan calculator.

Where to get wedding loans

Many personal loan lenders advertise wedding loans. However, you can use a personal loan to pay for virtually anything, so you don’t have to limit yourself to lenders that specifically tout wedding loans. Ideally, you should prequalify through multiple lenders to compare estimated APRs and find the best loan for your financial situation. Here are a few places where you may be able to get a wedding loan:

LenderAPRLoan amountLoan length
Discover Bank6.99% - 24.99%$2,500 to $35,00036 to 84 months
LightStream3.99% - 19.99%$5,000 to $100,00024 to 144 months
Marcus by Goldman Sachs®6.99% - 19.99%$3,500 to $40,00036 to 72 months
OneMain Financial18.00% - 35.99%$1,500 to $20,00024 to 60 months
Upstart8.27% - 35.99%$1,000 to $50,00036 or 60 months

See personalized offers

Pros and cons of financing your wedding with a personal loan

Pros

  • Paying for your own wedding gives you more control over your big day.
  • You’ll repay the cost of the wedding in fixed monthly payments over a set period of time.
  • Your loan may be funded as soon as the next day, and you can spend the wedding funds on an as-needed basis

Cons

  • You’ll pay interest on your wedding expenses.
  • Personal loan APRs vary widely depending on your credit, so low-credit borrowers will pay a premium on interest.
  • You could be left paying for your wedding long after the big day has come and gone, as personal loans can last up to five years or longer.

5 steps to applying for a wedding loan

  1. Gather your personal information. Lenders will want to know your income, your debt-to-income (DTI) ratio and your employment status.
  2. Check your credit score. You can access your free credit score on the My LendingTree app. You can also request a free copy of your full credit report from all three credit bureaus on AnnualCreditReport.com.
  3.  

  4. Determine how much you need to borrow. Consider everything from the photographer to the wedding bands. Don’t borrow too much, or else you’ll pay interest on money you didn’t use. Borrow too little and you might not have the money to cover expenses.
  5. Shop around with multiple lenders. To get prequalified for a personal loan, you send along your information to a lender and receive an estimated APR, if you’re eligible. Prequalification involves a soft credit inquiry, which will not affect your score.
  6. Accept your best offer and receive your money. When you decide which lender you want to work with, they will conduct a hard credit inquiry to secure your offer. Once you’re done applying for your loan, you could get your money as quickly as the same day.

Top wedding costs to consider

Engagement ring & wedding bands

Florist & décor

Food & drink

Formal wear

Musicians & DJ

Photographer & videographer

Reception & ceremony venue

Wedding planner

Factors to consider when comparing wedding loan lenders

  • APR. Typically, the offer with the lowest APR will save you the most money over the life of the loan.
  • Fees. Some lenders charge fees, such as a loan origination fee (typically 1%-8% the cost of the loan) and a prepayment penalty. Other lenders charge no fees at all.
  • Prequalification. Many lenders let you prequalify to check your eligibility and estimated APR with a soft credit pull, which won’t affect your credit. Not all lenders offer this.
  • Convenience. Certain lenders use autopay and will give you a discounted APR for enrolling. Other lenders offer same-day loan funding.
  • Reviews. See what other borrowers have to say about the lenders you’re considering. You can check for personal loan lender reviews on LendingTree.

Alternative ways to finance a wedding

Take your time saving up with a long engagement

The average engagement is 15 months, according to the 2020 Wedding Report from WeddingWire. Give yourself plenty of time to save up for the big day, and start saving money a year in advance before putting down deposits. Wait even longer if that’s what works for you.

Plan your wedding on your time frame, because in some cases, it might be the best decision to wait until you’re financially prepared. Create a budget with your fiance so you can cover your wedding expenses with cash.
 
Click Here for a Free Budgeting Worksheet

Ask your guests to pitch in

Not everyone needs or wants to receive gifts for their wedding. Instead of loading up your wedding registry with brand-name kitchen gadgets and delicate china you’ll only use a few times a year, consider asking your guests to help cover the wedding expenses.

Set up a cash registry, such as Honeyfund or The Knot Cash Fund. If you don’t want your wedding to result in more clutter, you can tactfully avoid getting gifts you don’t want by setting up a registry and adding a small note on your wedding website instead. But at the end of the day, the gift-giver is going to decide what they want to give you.

Use a credit card with an introductory 0% APR period

Putting all your wedding expenses on a credit card is inadvisable, since you’ll end up paying mountains of compounded interest by the time your ceremony is over. However, there’s an exception to the rule: You could take advantage of a credit card with an introductory 0% APR period.

Some credit cards have intro APR periods that last up to 20 months, which could give you plenty of time to plan your wedding and repay the debt before you’re charged interest. Keep in mind that if you don’t pay off the debt before the promotional period ends, you’ll end up paying interest on the remaining balance.

As an added bonus, you could try to utilize a rewards credit card to earn travel miles or cash back on all your wedding purchases. Just use caution when you take out credit card debt to pay for your wedding, and make sure you repay the balance to avoid paying interest.

Wedding loan FAQ

Yes. A wedding loan is a type of personal loan that is used to pay for wedding expenses. Personal loans can be used to finance virtually anything, meaning that you could use a personal loan to cover all kinds of wedding-related costs like a venue deposit, engagement ring and wedding dress.
 
An unsecured personal loan doesn’t require collateral like a car or your home, meaning that it’s backed by your promise to repay the lender. Because of this, interest rates are determined by your creditworthiness. Personal loans tend to have higher APRs than secured loans, like a mortgage or auto loan.

It will be difficult to secure a personal loan with favorable terms if you have bad credit. Because personal loans are typically unsecured and have no collateral, lenders lean on your credit history to determine your eligibility and terms.
 
That being said, certain lenders specialize in personal loans for bad credit. Many lenders require a 600 credit score minimum, making it challenging for people with low or no credit to get approved. You could always take steps to improve your credit score before applying for a loan.

Yes, engagement ring loans are just like any other type of personal loan. Some lenders, like Prosper, advertise engagement ring loans specifically. You can search for small personal loans and potentially see offers using LendingTree.

The short answer is that it depends. A personal loan for a wedding is a good alternative to putting all your wedding expenses on a credit card with high interest rates. Plus, wedding loans give you the autonomy to plan your big day as you see fit.
 
However, using a wedding loan means that you’ll have to pay interest to the lender on all your wedding expenses, so you’ll be paying a premium on top of the base costs for your big day. Taking on debt for non-necessities (such as a wedding) is typically not recommended.