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Is a Japanese wedding expensive?


Japanese weddings are known for their elaborate and traditional ceremonies, but many people wonder if they are worth the cost. In this article, we will explore the various elements that make a Japanese wedding expensive and compare it to other types of weddings.

History of Japanese Weddings

Before diving into the cost of a Japanese wedding, it’s important to understand the history behind these ceremonies. Weddings in Japan have evolved over centuries and are heavily influenced by Shintoism, Buddhism, and Western culture. Traditional Japanese weddings involve multiple ceremonies and rituals that reflect the couple’s cultural heritage.

Japanese Snack Box

Types of Japanese Weddings

There are several types of Japanese weddings, each with its own unique customs and price points. The most common types include Shinto weddings, Christian weddings, and non-religious weddings. Shinto weddings tend to be the most expensive due to their elaborate rituals and traditional attire.

Cost of a Japanese Wedding

The cost of a Japanese wedding varies depending on the type of ceremony and location. On average, a Shinto wedding can cost anywhere from ¥3,000,000 ($28,000) to ¥5,000,000 ($47,000) or more. This includes venue rental, food, drinks, attire, and decorations.

Attire for a Japanese Wedding

One of the main expenses for a Japanese wedding is the attire. The bride typically wears a white kimono for the ceremony and changes into several colorful outfits throughout the day. The groom wears a traditional black suit or a kimono.

Venue Rental

The venue rental for a Japanese wedding can also be costly. Many couples choose to rent out hotels or traditional Japanese gardens for their ceremonies. The price can vary depending on location and time of year.

Food and Drinks

Japanese weddings typically include a formal sit-down dinner or buffet-style meal for guests. Traditional Japanese cuisine such as sushi and tempura are often served. Drinks such as sake and beer are also provided.


Decorations for a Japanese wedding can range from simple floral arrangements to elaborate backdrops and lighting. Couples often incorporate traditional elements such as lanterns and cherry blossom trees.

Comparison to Western Weddings

Compared to Western weddings, Japanese weddings tend to be more expensive due to their focus on tradition and formality. However, Western weddings can also be pricey depending on the location and type of ceremony.

Alternative Wedding Options

For those looking to save money on their wedding, there are alternative options such as getting married at city hall or having a smaller ceremony with close family and friends. These options can be significantly cheaper than a traditional Japanese wedding.


In conclusion, Japanese weddings can be expensive due to their focus on tradition and formality. However, there are alternative options for those looking to save money. Ultimately, the cost of a wedding should be based on the couple’s personal preferences and budget.


Include sources used in researching this article such as articles or statistics from reputable websites or publications.

How much does the average Japanese wedding cost?

In Japan, the average cost of a wedding ceremony is approximately ¥3 million, which includes expenses for 70 guests, the attire of the couple, the venue, catering, and other related costs. However, it is possible to reduce the overall cost by renting the attire or opting for wedding packages.

Who pays for a Japanese wedding?

Wedding expenses can be paid for by either the bride’s or groom’s family, or both families can contribute. Sometimes a family will take on the responsibility of hosting the wedding and may take out a significant loan to cover the expenses. Often times, parents are willing to invest a large sum of money to avoid any embarrassment.

Is $5,000 enough for a wedding?

If you are interested in having a wedding that costs no more than $5,000, it is achievable. You can find inspiration from real weddings that were planned with a budget of $5,000 on The Budget Savvy Bride website, where other couples have shared their experiences.

Can foreigners have a Japanese wedding?

If you are an American marrying in Japan, you must obtain a notarized Affidavit of Competency to Marry from your embassy or consulate in Japan. This document confirms that you are legally allowed to get married. You will need to schedule an appointment to obtain this service.

Is $200 enough for a wedding?

A typical gift for a wedding is approximately $100 per guest, which is a good starting point. If you are attending with a guest, then $200 as a couple is appropriate. If you are not close to the bride or groom and are just an acquaintance or co-worker, a gift of $25 might be appropriate.

Is divorce common in Japan?

The divorce rate in Japan, while lower than in the United States, is on the rise. Roughly one in three Japanese marriages end in divorce, which is four times the rate in the 1950s and double the rate in the 1970s. The rate of divorce has slowed down due to a decrease in the number of couples getting married.

Wedding Industry in Japan

The wedding industry in Japan is a significant contributor to the country’s economy. According to a report by the Japan Wedding Industry Association, the average cost of a wedding in Japan was around ¥3,700,000 ($35,000) in 2019. This is a significant increase from the average cost of ¥2,620,000 ($24,000) in 2000.

Changing Trends in Japanese Weddings

In recent years, there has been a shift towards more personalized and intimate weddings in Japan. Many couples are opting for non-traditional venues such as beaches or parks and incorporating unique elements such as live music or food trucks. This trend towards more casual and personalized weddings has also led to a decrease in the average cost of a wedding.

Destination Weddings in Japan

Japan has become an increasingly popular destination for weddings due to its stunning natural landscapes and unique cultural experiences. Destination weddings in Japan can range from traditional Shinto ceremonies at shrines to modern weddings at luxury resorts. However, these weddings can be even more expensive than traditional Japanese weddings due to the additional costs of travel and accommodations.

Wedding Planning Services

Due to the complexity and expense of planning a Japanese wedding, many couples opt to hire wedding planners. These services can range from full-scale planning and coordination to simply providing assistance with specific aspects of the wedding such as venue rental or attire. Wedding planning services can add an additional cost to the already expensive process of planning a Japanese wedding.

The Value of a Japanese Wedding

While Japanese weddings may be costly, many couples view them as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to celebrate their love and honor their cultural heritage. The elaborate ceremonies and rituals provide a sense of tradition and formality that cannot be replicated in other types of weddings. For some couples, the value of a Japanese wedding outweighs the cost.

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