7 Beach Wedding Costs To Consider

Photo by Ryan Smith Photography

Many couples select beach weddings due to their simplicity. Weddings can be staged in naturally inspiring locations with seemingly little effort and worry. While the average cost of a wedding is going to vary depending on the size and scope of your big day, beach weddings come with their own set of costs that you have to consider. No matter if you are trying to have the most basic beach wedding or even the most elaborate, here are a few standard costs you will pay to wed on your selected sands.

1. Location

How much does a beach wedding venue cost?

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The cost of a beach wedding is often dictated by its location. If you decide to get married on a beach in the Caribbean or Mexico, you can often find all-inclusive wedding packages to suit all budgets, as these are popular locales to get married. For example, places like Jamaica and the Dominican Republic have built up a reputation for offering beach wedding packages at one set cost for the entire wedding. These locales are also generally named the most affordable beach destinations for travel.  The same can be said for hosting your wedding south of the border in terms of affordability.

If you are looking to have you beach wedding stateside, the cost will also depend on on the location. A place like Destin, Florida will often be less than those beach weddings in Miami. Beach weddings can also vary from coast to coast. For example, the wedding venue, the Cape Cod House offers 300’ of private sandy beach on Nantucket Sound for wedding use. However, the starting estate fee is around $75,000 for this piece of paradise. In contrast, a smaller venue like that of the Wind and Sea Big Sur wedding venue, you can have a more intimate beach wedding on the famous Central Coast of California for around $2,300 a night. Bottom line, your beach wedding costs will often be dictated by the location of your wedding. The more expensive, private and size of a beach in any locale will cost more than smaller, cheaper destinations.

2. Permits

If you decide to have your beach wedding at a private estate with beachfront property, you usually won’t have to worry about the cost of the permit for the beach space. However, if you are trying to have a beach wedding on a public beach, you will have to fork over a fee for a permit. The cost will depend again on the city and county of the beach.

More coveted locations can cost more in the permit department. For example, if you want to have a beach wedding in Hunting Beach, you will pay a $125 application fee, a $400 site fee and you will also have to have some kind of insurance. Again, you should research how much the public beach you want to marry on will charge you for a permit and any other fees. Also couples should know what this fee would give them. Most public beaches only allow you to use the space for a certain time frame and in a very limited capacity as opposed to private beaches.

3. Chair and Furniture Rentals

Beach wedding decor costs to consider

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A beach wedding venue is drastically different than many other wedding venues in that it often doesn’t come with its own seating. In most cases, you will have to pay a rental company to supply chairs and other furniture for your wedding. The cost of chairs for a wedding ceremony will depend on a number of factors. If you merely want the most basic of chairs, you could pay as little as $1.50 a chair. If you want a more customized and polished look, you could be looking at more like $5 to $15 per chair. Again, if you decide to have your beach wedding at a set estate, they might provide you with chairs included the price of the venue. If you are planning a larger beach wedding, you must consider the cost of having to rent more chairs if your venue only has a certain number.

4. Time of Year

Another cost to consider with beach weddings is merely what time of year you want to get married. If you are planning a destination beach wedding, the costs will depend on if the wedding falls in the offseason or in season. If you marry on beaches in the off-season, you will often pay less for flights, hotels and general costs.

The same can be said for stateside beach weddings. Summer weddings tend to be more coveted than those in the winter when it comes to beach weddings. However, in a location like California, it is possible to have a winter beach wedding more easily. Regardless, the more popular the time of the year, the more money and competition you might face to have your beach wedding.

5. Restrooms and Rain

If you want to have the most basic of beach weddings, you still have to consider what happens if it rains. Brides and grooms could require tent rentals on the chance that it might rain on their beach wedding day. Tent rentals vary depending on how large or elaborate you want them to be.

In addition to tent rentals due to the chance of rain for a beach wedding, you also have to consider the bathroom situation. If you are merely doing a public beach wedding, you should provide guests with facilities if they need them. The most basic of portable bathrooms can run for $100 to the more elaborate at $4,000. Some estates with beachfront property might alleviate this cost by allowing guests to use the estate building’s bathrooms rather than having to rent separately.

6. Beach Wedding Trellises and Altar Focal Points

Beach Wedding Costs

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While a beach wedding can be beautiful on its own, most couples want to create some kind of focal point for the wedding ceremony by way of a wedding trellis or arbor. DIY brides and grooms can buy a basic arbor for their beach wedding for as little as $200. However, if you want your beach wedding trellis to be more elaborate with flowers and fabric, this will cost more money. You should consult with florists to see how much they will charge to design and execute a beach wedding trellis.

7. Size

How expensive is a beach wedding

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As is the case with all weddings, the size of your guest list will dictate how much you will pay. If you have more people, you will need more chairs, a larger venue, more beach space and more food and drink. If you keep your beach wedding smaller, you can often have a five star wedding for a lot less.

Your Turn…

Did you have a beach wedding? What costs do you wish you knew about before you married by the sea?