A guide to wedding insurance

Getting married is an expensive business, so if you’re organising your big day you may want to consider taking out wedding insurance. But is it worth the money? And, for that matter, how much does it cost? Find the answers to these questions and more in our guide to wedding insurance.

Getting married is an expensive business, so if you’re organising your big day you may want to consider taking out wedding insurance. But is it worth the money? And, for that matter, how much does it cost? Find the answers to these questions and more in our guide to wedding insurance.

Helen Phipps
Insurance expert
minute read
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Last Updated 3 NOVEMBER 2022

What is wedding insurance?

Wedding insurance is designed to protect you if your celebrations go wrong. The average cost of a UK wedding is around £30,000 – a lot of money by any standards and certainly a sum you don’t want to lose. This is why it could be worth considering wedding insurance just in case you have to cancel or postpone your wedding day.

Do I need wedding insurance?

Not everyone is going to need wedding insurance. If you’re planning an intimate day for close family and friends only, there’s little point insuring it if you can afford to cover any losses. But if yours is the party to end all parties and you’d be left footing huge bills if something went wrong – let’s say your caterers cancelled or the venue went out of business – you might find it’s worth getting cover.

But even if you’re hosting a Kardashian-style mega event, it’s worth checking your supplier contracts before taking out extra insurance as it may be that you’re already covered. Also, if you pay by credit card, you could have some protection under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act, although this isn’t guaranteed. And this won’t cover you if someone falls ill before the big day, for example, so it’s not a straightforward alternative to wedding insurance.

Having said that, there aren’t a lot of insurance providers who offer wedding insurance packages. Unfortunately, you can’t currently compare wedding insurance with us, so if you want to take out a policy, you’ll have to shop around for it yourself.

How much wedding insurance cover do I need?

You’ll need to work out how much your wedding is going to cost and find a cancellation policy that will cover you for at least this amount. Check the policy carefully to see the maximum limits for each expense to make sure it matches what you’re paying out.

How much does wedding insurance cost?

The price of your policy will vary depending on a number of factors, not least the size of your wedding and where it’s taking place. Typical costs start at £20, going up to £500 for a large, expensive wedding.

Insuring a wedding abroad is likely to cost more than insuring a UK wedding as there’s a higher chance of something going wrong. How much you pay for your policy will also depend on what level of cover you choose.

What does wedding insurance cover?

With any insurance policy it’s important to read the small print as different policies cover different eventualities. For wedding insurance, you’re likely to be covered for:

  • The venue cancelling or going out of business
  • Your florist, caterer, photographer or another supplier cancelling or not following through on the contract
  • Having to cancel due to illness, accident or death
  • Having to cancel because of extreme weather or a natural disaster
  • Losing something crucial, such as the wedding dress or rings.

You may be able to add on optional marquee cover, public liability cover and ceremonial swords cover for an extra premium. Be aware, though, that not all public liability insurance covers weddings.

If you’re planning on having two ceremonies, such as a civil ceremony followed by a church blessing or two weddings for different traditions, check that your policy will cover cancelling both dates. You might find that insurance providers will only cover both ceremonies if they’re less than 21 days apart.

It’s worth noting that if you make a claim, your insurance provider may cover the cost of rearranging the wedding or replacing the item, rather than giving you a cash payout.

What isn’t covered by wedding insurance?

Again, policies vary, but there are some circumstances your wedding insurance is unlikely to cover. For instance:

  • One of you changing your mind
  • Cancelling due to illness caused by a pre-existing condition
  • Cancelling because something minor has gone wrong
  • Bad weather ruining your big day (although you may be covered if conditions are so severe your guests can’t make it)
  • Cancelling because you’re having financial problems
  • Marquees might be excluded from your cover.

What insurance do I need for a wedding abroad?

If you’re having a destination wedding, you’ll want to use travel insurance, which could cover theft and baggage loss. You’ll need to check your policy’s single-item limit to make sure it covers expensive items like your wedding dress, the rings, cameras and wedding gifts.

Travel insurance could also cover you if you get taken ill while abroad and need medical cover.

Travel insurance won’t cover you for mishaps such as your wedding venue, caterer or florist going bust after you’ve paid them. But you can buy wedding insurance in the UK that has overseas wedding cover available as an add on that could offer cover.

Will my home insurance cover my wedding?

Home insurance won’t cover the wedding itself. But it may be possible to extend your home contents insurance to cover a temporary increase in the value of the contents of your home because of a wedding.

If you’ve bought expensive wedding or engagement rings that are worth more than the single-item limit on your home insurance policy, you’ll need to add these as named items to make sure they’re covered. Get in touch with your insurance provider and ask them to amend your policy.

The same might apply if you’ve bought an expensive wedding dress.

Do I need public liability insurance for my wedding?

Public liability insurance could cover your legal costs (and any compensation) if someone is injured or killed at your wedding and makes a claim against you. It’s highly unlikely you’ll need it. However, some insurance providers offer public liability cover for weddings and having it may give you peace of mind in case something goes wrong.

You might be able to add public liability insurance to your wedding insurance policy. But if you’re looking into separate public liability insurance, it’s worth remembering that not all policies cover weddings so be sure to check with your insurance provider.

Frequently asked question

Can I compare wedding insurance?

Unfortunately, you can’t compare wedding insurance with us. But it’s worth doing your own research to see if you can find cover that suits your needs.

What are the best wedding insurance companies?

Only a few insurance providers offer specialist wedding cover. That number has reduced further as the coronavirus pandemic has taken a toll. And some providers that had previously offered insurance have stopped doing so for new customers.

If you’re planning a very expensive wedding, your choices may be further limited by the maximum cover offered. Some providers will offer maximum cancellation cover of up to £25,000 while others may go up to £100,000 or more.

Some polices have added extras that can make them more tempting – for example, a stress counselling helpline for when all the organising gets too much.

Will wedding insurance cover me for COVID-19?

It could depend on how COVID-19 has affected your wedding. You’ll need to check your policy to see if it offers cover for the following:

  • You or your partner have been seriously unwell and are unable to be at the wedding
  • The venue cancels because they’re unable to hold the service or reception
  • Any of the suppliers goes bust or fails to supply their services
  • You’re made redundant and are no longer able to pay for the wedding.

I’m getting married – should I consider increasing my home contents cover?

A common result of getting married is that the number of valuables you own suddenly rises. There’s the dress and the engagement ring, for starters. And if you’re getting married at home, you’re likely to find you’re housing camera equipment, champagne and other expensive items.

Some contents policies may give you a temporary increase in your policy for special occasions, such as a wedding, but you may need a longer-term solution if expensive wedding gifts, for example, have increased the value of the contents of your home.

Think about how much additional cover you’re likely to need by adding up the value of all these additional items. Check what the single item limit is on your home insurance policy and work out if any of your new possessions need to be listed separately. Then contact your insurance provider to let them know about the changes.

Wedding insurance: things to know

If you’re thinking of taking out wedding insurance, here are our tips:

  • Get insured earlier, rather than later
    The sooner you get cover, the sooner you’ll be protected. You can buy insurance up to two years ahead of the big day.
  • Use experienced suppliers
    When it comes to caterers, florists, DJs and so on, the more experience they have, the more reliable they’re likely to be. A venue manager who’s seen it all is less likely to be thrown by last-minute changes of plan and will come up with creative solutions to give you the wedding you want, rather than cancelling.
  • Get everything in writing and keep copies
    Make sure you have copies of contracts or agreements you’ve made with your wedding suppliers, together with any relevant letters and emails. Keep all your receipts for payments too. You may need to provide these if you’re unfortunate enough to have to make a claim.
  • Create a spreadsheet
    A crucial part of wedding planning is making a budget and sticking to it. Not only will this help you to manage costs, but your insurance will typically cover your wedding up to a set level, so you’ll need to know how much you’re planning on spending.

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