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Sergei holding a pink piggy bank
Sergei holding a pink piggy bank Sergei holding a pink piggy bank

Wedding loans

Compare wedding loans for your big day

  • Find out what wedding loans you’re eligible for, without impacting your credit score
  • Get a free quote using our eligibility checker
  • See what quotes you are eligible for in just a few minutes

What is a wedding loan?

A wedding loan is an unsecured personal loan. You can borrow the money you need to pay for your wedding upfront, then spread the cost by paying it back over a set period.

The average cost of a wedding in the UK is now estimated to be around £18,000 to £20,000, even as many of us feel the pinch of the cost-of-living crisis. So it’s no wonder many couples seek financial support for their wedding.

How do wedding loans work?

As with other types of unsecured loan, you’ll be able to choose how long you want the loan for. Typically, you can pay back your wedding loan over one to five years, although some lenders offer terms of up to 10 years if you’re borrowing a larger amount.

Most banks and building societies offer unsecured personal loans of between £1,000 and £25,000, but some will lend as much as £50,000. How much you’ll be able to borrow will depend on your financial circumstances.

Unsecured personal loans usually have a fixed rate of interest, so you should know exactly how much your repayments will be.

How much should I borrow for a wedding?

Every wedding is as unique as the couple tying the knot, but there’s normally a long list of things you’ll need to organise and pay for when you’re planning your big day.

Start by creating an overall budget and break it down into categories to see whether there’s anything you might be able to save on. Then, with a clear budget in mind, you can decide how much you want to borrow to bridge the gap. Plus, it’s a good idea to have a little extra money to account for the unexpected expenses that will inevitably come up.

Ideally, you should be in a position to pay for most of the wedding yourselves as no one wants to start married life with a big debt.

How much will a wedding loan cost?

It depends on the interest rate you’re offered and the length of the loan.

If you choose to repay the loan for your wedding over a longer term, it will lower your monthly repayments. But because of the extra interest you’ll pay, choosing a longer loan term means your loan will cost you more overall.

If you decide you need a wedding loan, our loan calculator can help you work out how much it could cost and what your monthly repayments could be.

Can I get a wedding loan?

It depends on your personal circumstances. You’ll generally have a better chance of being accepted for an unsecured wedding loan if:

  • You have a good credit history. Lenders want to know that you’ve managed debt well in the past and that you can be trusted to pay back what you borrow. 
  • You have a steady income. A lender will be more likely to approve your loan application if you have a regular income.
  • You can afford the loan. Responsible lenders will look at your current debt and regular outgoings alongside your income to see if you can afford the loan.

See what loans you’re likely to be accepted for without impacting your credit score.

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What are the pros of taking out a wedding loan?

Here are some of the benefits of taking out a loan to help with your wedding:

  • Fast access to funds – once you’ve been approved for a wedding loan, you could have the money in your bank account within a day or so.
  • You can spread the cost – you’ll have flexibility over how much money to borrow and for how long. A short-term loan means you’ll pay less interest overall. Paying back your loan over a longer timeframe means you’ll pay more interest but your monthly repayments will be lower.
  • Fixed rates – you’ll repay a fixed amount each month, which makes it easier to budget.
  • You can build your credit score – paying off a wedding loan on time and in full can help build your credit score.

What are the cons of a wedding loan?

A wedding loan can help you have a day to remember, but there are some disadvantages to consider:

  • You need a good credit score to get the best loan rates – the interest rate you see advertised may not be the rate you’re offered (unless it’s a guaranteed rate).
  • It could damage your credit score – if your circumstances change and you find you can’t make the repayments on your loan, it will have a negative effect on your credit score.
  • It might not be the cheapest way to borrow – a wedding loan isn’t the only way of financing your big day, so it’s worth comparing your options to see what works best for you.

Can I get a wedding loan with bad credit?

When you apply for a loan, lenders look at your credit history to help them decide what interest rate to charge you and how much you can borrow. If you have a poor credit rating, you’ll typically find it more difficult getting approved for an unsecured wedding loan and you won’t be eligible for the best rates.

It’s not impossible to get a wedding loan, though, as there are bad credit loan options available. These may come with restrictions, such as a limit on how much you can borrow.

To find out how likely you are to qualify for a bad credit loan, use our loan eligibility checker. It will show you which loans you’re likely to be accepted for and won’t impact your credit score.

What are the alternatives to a wedding loan?

Aside from taking out a loan, there are a few other options you could consider to help finance your big day:

Credit cards

A 0% purchase credit card lets you make purchases upfront and pay off what you’ve spent, interest-free, over a set period. If you’ve cleared what you owe at the end of the 0% period, the credit won’t have cost you anything.

You’ll need to pay at least the minimum repayment each month and ideally pay off what you owe before the 0% period expires. Otherwise, you’ll end up paying interest on what you owe.

Interest-free overdraft

If you need money in the short-term to secure a venue, for example, you could use an interest-free overdraft (if you have one).

But be aware that you’re likely to be charged if you go over your overdraft limit.

A family loan

You could borrow from a family member. It may be that they won’t charge you interest or only charge a low rate.

Just bear in mind that it could harm your relationship if you can’t pay them back. For that reason, it could be a good idea to agree beforehand on what the monthly repayments will be.

Saving up

If you’re itching to get hitched, saving up can feel impossibly slow. But the upside of waiting is being able to start your married life debt-free. Even if you’re not able to fund the whole wedding with your savings, the more you can cover without borrowing, the better.

Shared budgeting may not be massively romantic but it’s an important part of married life. Sit down together and work out what you could save each month for your wedding.

What do I need to get a wedding loan quote? 

To get a wedding loan quote, you’ll need to give a few details about yourself and tell us:

  • How much you want to borrow
  • How long you need to pay it back
  • Your annual income
  • How many people depend on you financially. 

Our loans eligibility checker will help you find the loans you’re most likely to be accepted for. Once you’ve chosen one, you’ll be transferred to the lender’s site to apply.

Author image Sajni Shah

What our expert says...

“Getting married should be one of the happiest times in your life, and a wedding loan can help you have the day you always dreamed of. But it’s vital to budget carefully so you can comfortably afford the monthly repayments. And try to pay back the loan as quickly as you can to reduce the amount of interest you pay.”

- Sajni Shah, Consumer expert on money and utilities

Frequently asked questions

Can I make an overpayment on a wedding loan?

Under the Consumer Credit Directive (CCD), you can overpay a personal loan at any time. But there may be penalties and conditions attached.

If you repay in full, you could be charged up to 28 days interest on the outstanding balance for loans with less than 12 months remaining, or up to 58 days of interest for loans with over a year left.

You may be able to make partial overpayments of up to £8,000 a year without paying charges.

If you overpay by more than £8,000, you could be charged up to 0.5% or 1% of the overpayment amount, depending on whether there’s less or more than a year left on your loan.

What happens if my wedding is cancelled?

You’ll still need to repay your wedding loan in full if your wedding doesn’t go ahead. If you’ve already paid for some aspects of your wedding using your loan money and you’re unable to get a refund, you might be able to claim it back if you have wedding insurance (you can’t compare wedding insurance with Compare the Market).

Page last reviewed on 27 FEBRUARY 2024
by Sajni Shah