One of the biggest benefits of having a big wedding with a ton of guests is you'll get a lump sum of cash from them in the form of wedding gifts. We're talking tens of thousands, as some guests will give you a few hundred dollars each.
When you're back from your honeymoon and your wedding decorations are stuffed away nicely in the trash, the question remains: What the heck do you do with all your wedding money? Do you put it away in savings? Use it to pay back your parents who may have paid for your wedding upfront? Or, do you use it to pay for something you've always wanted, like a 72” HD TV or a weeklong trip to the Bahamas?
Here are nine couples who admitted what they really spent their wedding cash on:
1. A New Car
I never owned a new car in my life, only hand-me-down cars from my parents. The cars were always breaking down and having issues. When I got married last October, my wife and I decided we wanted to buy a nice new car. We used most of our wedding money to buy a new BMW. It sounds like a crazy purchase for people in their 20s, but we figured we may never have this much cash laying around again. Might as well use it now on something that will last us many years.
— Paul, 27
2. The Wedding
My wife and I paid for our wedding 100 percent ourselves. We dug into every savings account we had to afford it. Every dollar we got from guests we used to replenish our savings account. I'd say we were able to pay back about 75 percent of the money we used. We hope to not touch those savings accounts again, unless we have an emergency.
— Henry, 30
3. Our Honeymoon
Right before my wedding, I was laid off from my job of two years. My husband works from home. I thought it would be cool to use my “downtime" and go on a longer honeymoon. We decided to use the money we got from our wedding guests toward a month-long honeymoon. We backpacked through Southeast Asia and actually didn't spend as much as we thought. It was a great way to use the cash and also my time off.
— Jackie, 28
4. Credit Card Debt
Between both of us, we had over $55,000 in credit card debt right before we got married. It was annoying that we had to use our gift money to pay those bills off, but we really wanted to enter our marriage debt-free. Three years later, we're still debt-free. Hallelujah.
— Nicole, 29
5. A Gambling Trip To Vegas
None of our friends or family know, but we used all our wedding gift money to go to Vegas and gamble. We both love casinos and we needed a post-wedding pick-me-up trip. We spent a week there and lost about $15,000. We told everyone we only lost $500. It's our little post-wedding secret.
— Danielle, 32
6. A Bunch Of Little Things
We blew through our cash pretty quickly. We only saved about $5,000 of it and spent the other $20,000. We used it on new furniture, clothes and stuff for our kitchen. We didn't have a registry; we only asked for cash. It was just easier for us to take the money and buy what we needed.
— Remi, 29
7. A New Career
I always wanted to get my MBA. My wife always wanted to go to nursing school. So it's going to sound completely lame, but we used the wedding money we got to go back to school. It was a great motivator to apply for schools and start our first semester.
— Rodrigo, 32
8. An Annulment
Well, our marriage didn't last very long. We were only married for four months. We spent about $2,000 of our wedding cash on breaking the marriage. The rest of the money we got, we split 50/50. How romantic, right?
— Sydney, 29
9. Paying Back Our Parents
I'm not scared to admit I had the wedding of my dreams. I really did. But, it cost a pretty penny. My parents paid for most of the $150,000 wedding I had. I decided it was the right thing to do to pay them back, so my husband and I wrote them a check for $50,000, which was more than half of the money we got from the wedding.
— Rachel, 27