From the moment you became engaged, you’ve had a lot on your mind: wedding dates, honeymoon locations, what you’ll wear, who you’ll invite, and what kind of cake you want – just to name a few things. Those are all extremely important details to plan.
What you probably haven’t considered is what you’ll do if something goes wrong on your wedding day. It’s one of the biggest fears people have but they also (incorrectly) believe there’s nothing they can do about it.
You shouldn’t focus on what can go wrong on your wedding day, but you can plan for it anyway and protect your big day – with a wedding insurance policy.
Here’s what you need to know.
What is Wedding Insurance?
Wedding insurance, also known as special events insurance, is a form of coverage that helps you have an amazing wedding day without worrying about what you’ll do when things go wrong – and, importantly, how you’ll afford what could go wrong.
There are two main types of wedding coverage available:
- Event Cancellation/Postponement
- Event Liability
If your big day needs to be postponed or even canceled for a specific reason, you can get help recovering the deposits you’ve already paid. And if someone gets hurt or sick while at your wedding, and you’re deemed responsible, event liability helps pay for injuries and damage. Without it, you would have to pay out of pocket.
Do I Need Wedding Insurance?
Not every wedding needs insurance. If you’re eloping and planning a small dinner party at a restaurant as a reception, you can probably skip wedding insurance. But if you’re hiring vendors, booking a venue for your wedding or reception, paying deposits, and/or serving alcohol, you definitely need some form of coverage.
Most deposits are non-refundable, and everything about a wedding is expensive. If something is damaged or lost or a vendor doesn’t show up, you shouldn’t have to pay twice. With the right wedding insurance policy, you won’t have to.
When you book a venue, they may require liability coverage but even if they don’t, it’s still a good idea for you to cover yourself. You can’t rely on the location’s liability insurance to cover all injuries or property damage that occurs at your wedding or reception. When someone trips over a tablecloth or slips out on the dance floor, they may hold you personally responsible. You need insurance coverage that protects you.
The most important element of any liability coverage for an event like a wedding is liquor liability. When someone drinks at your event and then leaves while intoxicated, you can be found responsible for any damages or injuries they cause after they leave. Event liability coverage may be the most important policy you can purchase for your wedding.
How Much Does Wedding Insurance Cost?
Wedding insurance doesn’t cost as much as you think it will. What you’ll pay depends on how big your wedding is, where it will be located, what food and drink will be served, how many vendors you hire, and what you choose to cover under the policy.
The average wedding insurance policy costs about $200 but it can cost less for smaller weddings and more for larger weddings. At the higher end, you can expect to pay about $600. Factor the cost of coverage into your budget just like you would the photographer or the wedding cake. If something goes wrong, it’ll be worth every penny you paid for it.
What Does Wedding Insurance Cover?
As with any insurance, most policies for weddings typically include specific coverage. You can also add other forms of coverage that may not be part of a standard policy.
Standard policies may include:
Some venues include insurance coverage as part of the rental, but don’t assume it will be available or that it will be enough. With a wedding insurance policy, you’ll be covered if the site is unavailable to you on your wedding date. If the reception burns down in a fire or the ceremony location closes down unexpectedly, wedding insurance helps cover the last minute costs of changing locations.
We all know weather is a major stressor on the big day. Will a storm shut everything down? Will you be rained out of your venue? If weather causes you to cancel or postpone your wedding, your insurance policy will help pay the costs of rescheduling or moving your ceremony and/or reception.
Another nightmare scenario that most brides and grooms don’t think about until it happens – what to do when a vendor doesn’t show up. From photographers to the florist, if a necessary person to the wedding of dreams cancels at the last minute or simply doesn’t show up, your policy will help pay the costs to reschedule your wedding later. According to the Knot, 30 percent of wedding insurance claims are related to problems with vendors.
Wedding Party Injury/Illness
No one wants to imagine the bride, groom, or anyone in the wedding party getting hurt or sick before or on the big day, but it’s possible. If the groom breaks a leg, the maid of honor gets sick, or someone else essential to your big day is unable to attend for injury or illness, you’ll be able to reschedule without worrying about the extra expense.
Make sure you understand which people and what kinds of illnesses or injuries are covered under your policy. Not every situation may fall within your policy.
Military Deployment/Job Transfer
Your wedding may have been planned a year or more in advance but that doesn’t mean the military will care when it’s time to deploy service members. You may have an amazing promotion with your corporate job but they need you to be there when you’re supposed to get married. If you have to postpone your wedding for these kinds of reasons, wedding insurance can help cover those costs.
Read your policy thoroughly, though, as not all military deployments are covered.
Additional coverage may be available for other situations that come up before, during, and even after your wedding that aren’t included in standard insurance policies. You may want to consider the following forms of coverage:
The photographs and video of your wedding are some of the most important keepsakes. They provide tangible reminders of your big day. But what if the photographer’s camera or the video recording is damaged before you receive the pictures or video? Coverage for photographs and video can help you re-stage and re-take pictures or to use existing pictures and video to offer another video option.
Attire and Rings
Your dress, suit, and wedding bands are essential to the big day. This coverage can help pay to replace lost, stolen, or damaged attired. It must have been in your possession when it was lost to be covered. This coverage includes the attire of your attendants and rented clothing, like tuxedos.
No one wants to imagine a guest stealing gifts at your wedding or a robbery in your home, but it happens. Stolen gifts may be covered by your wedding insurance plan. This only includes non-cash gifts and you’ll need to file a police report as part of the claims process. Theft is only covered within a certain time frame before or after the wedding, as well. Read your policy carefully.
You might not need coverage for your honeymoon if your credit card offers travel insurance. Your homeowners insurance may cover it, as well. If not, consider purchasing additional protection specifically for your honeymoon. This can help cover canceled flights, lost luggage, and other disasters that can happen on a trip.
Therapy/Counseling for Cancellation
Not all policies will offer this coverage but it’s worth purchasing and using if it’s available. Canceling or postponing your wedding can be a traumatic experience, especially if the reason was traumatic – like an accident, illness, or even death. You may need counseling to help you cope with the stress and upheaval.
Don’t assume it’s available in your wedding insurance policy but it’s worth asking about when you’re choosing your coverage.
Loss of Deposits
A lot of your coverage will help you reschedule and pay the expenses for postponements and cancellations. But loss of deposits coverage helps you recover a deposit you’ve already paid (for a covered loss). If a vendor doesn’t show up, you may struggle to get your deposit back from them but with this coverage, you won’t have to worry about it.
The only jewelry covered under Attire and Rings in a wedding insurance policy are your wedding bands. If you wear family jewelry or special pieces borrowed from someone for your wedding, you need special jewelry coverage in case of loss, damage, or theft.
Engagement rings aren’t included in this policy. To cover your engagement ring, you’ll need a separate policy that’s not part of your wedding insurance.
Not every wedding venue offers everything you need for a wedding or reception – altar, chairs, tables, decorations, etc. You may need to rent these items for your big day. Make sure you’re covered if any of these items are damaged or stolen while in your possession. Without insurance coverage, you’ll have to pay the rental company for the damages out of your own pocket.
Sometimes a wedding doesn’t need to be canceled or postponed – you just need a little extra help to get through the day. You may need last minute sound equipment when the microphones stop working. You might need flashlights, candles, batteries, or even a generator if the power goes out. Some of these extra expenses could be covered by your wedding insurance policy.
What Wedding Insurance Doesn’t Cover
Looking through all of this, you might think that wedding insurance covers absolutely everything that could go wrong on your wedding day. While a lot of common issues definitely fall within a policy, it won’t cover every situation.
Here are the two main exclusions:
Changes of heart: No one should get married if they think it’s a bad idea or to the wrong person. But don’t expect your wedding insurance policy to reimburse you for a cancellation because you or your partner changed your mind.
Engagement rings: We said it before and we’re saying it again. Engagement rings are not included in wedding insurance policies. You have coverage options for your ring through a separate policy or possibly with your homeowners policy.
Questions to Ask About Your Wedding Insurance Policy
When you purchase a wedding insurance policy, it’s important to understand what it covers and doesn’t. You also need to understand what you’re paying for. More importantly, you don’t want any surprises when you’re already in a stressful moment like postponing your wedding.
Here are a few questions to ask your independent insurance agent about your policy:
What’s included in the standard policy?
Not every possible situation will be included in the standard wedding insurance policy offered by an insurer. Make sure you know exactly what is and isn’t covered. This will help you decide if you need to add additional coverage.
How much is the deductible?
The deductible will vary based on the type of coverage. In many cases, there may be no deductible for general liability but there will likely be a deductible for losses due to cancellation or postponement.
Are my wedding rings covered?
Your wedding rings will only be covered if your wedding insurance policy includes ring coverage. If it’s not listed in the standard policy, ask about add-on coverage.
Is my honeymoon covered?
Honeymoons are rarely covered under a basic wedding policy. In some cases, you may not need a separate policy. But it’s always worth asking about, especially if you plan a big trip.
Will cancellation for COVID-19 be covered?
Even now, this is a good question to ask. In many cases, cancellation because of a COVID outbreak will likely only be covered if someone in the wedding party gets sick. It may not be covered if you simply have to cancel because of the risk of COVID or if shutdowns are required by the venue or mandates.
What happens if I don’t have wedding insurance?
If you don’t have wedding insurance, you could lose the thousands of dollars you’ve already spent if you have to cancel or postpone your wedding. You may also have no way to replace damaged photographs or video without paying twice.
And if someone gets hurt or suffers property damage at your wedding and decides to hold you personally responsible, you may have to pay legal fees and settlements out of pocket. Depending on the injury or damage, this can become expensive very quickly.
When Should I Buy Wedding Insurance?
Once you set a wedding date and begin to plan your big day, it’s time to look into a wedding insurance policy, especially once you have an idea of your budget. As soon as you begin to put down deposits, you definitely need coverage. You want to make sure those deposits are protected and that you have the coverage you need in case you need to cancel or postpone the wedding.
How Do I Buy Wedding Insurance?
We’ve made it easy to instantly purchase wedding insurance coverage. Simply visit this link. It’s not as expensive as you might imagine, and it will be well worth the cost if anything goes wrong on your big day.
Contact us today so we can help you protect the happiest day of your life.