If you are planning a wedding in the next twelve months, you will be in good company. Over two million weddings are held annually in the USA, and that takes a lot of planning.

Put another way, two and a half million couples are poring over endless lists—lists of the when, where, what, and who that make their wedding day their own.

No one plans for their wedding to be average, but there are numerous statistics to tell us the highs, the lows, and the averages. But the best measure is that whenever it is, wherever it is, you and your guests enjoy the celebration and an event that you have a lifetime to look back on and enjoy.

If you enjoy crowds, the most popular city is Las Vegas (11,400 weddings per year), and the most popular destination is Hawaii state, (18000 weddings per year). The busiest months are, as you might expect, May (9.8%), June (10%), July (10.6%), and August (10.2%). One final statistic: the average cost of a wedding in the USA is between $28,000 and $35,000 (for a destination wedding). But these are only averages. They include a tiny number of people who spend vast sums of money. The mode (norm), in this case, the amount that most people spend is probably $10,000 less.

Most importantly, remember that over two million weddings will NOT be in Hawaii or Las Vegas. They will be in hometowns up and down the country, and 80% are in churches or registry offices, NOT on a beach and not in high summer. In fact, almost 50% of all weddings are in Spring or early fall. In November and December, everyone is preparing for Christmas. In January and February, they are recovering.

Insurance is usually far down most couples’ planning lists. After all, insurance is only for ‘when things go wrong,’ and we don’t think anything will go wrong, so we don’t give insurance a very high priority.

However, there are two types of insurance unique to weddings.

The first covers the event and all the surrounding services and facilities. Among the most obvious are cancellation or postponement due to the weather, a catastrophic disaster, the indisposition of a key figure, the failure of a supplier to fulfill a contract, and loss or damage to wedding gifts. Perhaps less obvious is your liability, e.g., Injury to guests, event staff, and damage to the venue.

Remember the average wedding cost? ($28,000) The insurance could be less than $300. You may be able to take out insurance up to two years before the big day itself and be covered as soon as you start booking and contracting out. However, you will only be covered from the point at which you sign up, so don’t leave it too late. If you know it will rain in ten days, so does your insurer. You will not get cover.

The other insurance you need to consider well before the event is your health insurance. Marriage is a unique opportunity. It allows two people with common goals to organize their existing coverage into a single plan that offers the best value security, and optimizes the state and federal tax and cost-sharing reductions. That opportunity is a “Special Enrollment Period” (SEP) unique to you and is centered on your wedding date, thirty days before, thirty days following.

The average age of brides is 25.3, and of grooms, 26.9. At twenty-six, young people age out of their parents’ (guardians’) health insurance, so one or both partners may be considering health insurance for the first time.

One or both partners may already have health coverage through their employer. One partner may have a higher income than the other. One or both partners may have a chronic (long-term) condition. This cannot stop you from obtaining coverage, but it could influence your choice of plan type even if you already have group (employer-sponsored) coverage. You may share the same healthcare providers; you may live in different states. These are all factors that could influence your choice of healthcare plans.

This is not a healthcare 101, but we have one piece of advice. The average length of engagement in the USA is fifteen months. Do not take that long to talk to a qualified independent health insurance broker. Do it now.  It may cost you both some time, but it could be the best wedding present you give yourselves.

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