How Much To Pay Wedding Officiant: Prices To Expect

You must know how much to pay wedding officiant, which usually starts at $300. Next, we will discuss how this expected payment is decided and a reasonable amount to pay a wedding officiant. 

For couples getting married in the church, you can read how much you pay a priest for a wedding. It’s always helpful to know the proper etiquette when paying different kinds of wedding officiants.

how much to pay wedding officiant


How Much Do You Pay An Officiant For A Wedding?


What is the average cost of wedding officiants?

Those curious about how much a wedding officiant costs can prepare the average $300. However, a price range you can also expect from a wedding officiant starts at $200 to $450, depending on many factors. 

Typically, your area affects how high to pay a wedding officiant. For example, those who live in big cities will cost more than smaller towns. 

If your officiant will also travel a significant distance, is involved during the wedding rehearsal, and is also assisting you with wedding preparations, then it’s reasonable to pay over $200. Depending on the type of officiant you’ll have at your wedding, they will usually give you a quote for their services.


Religious wedding officiant vs civil wedding officiant

How much is the difference between the costs of a religious wedding officiant and a civil wedding officiant? Religious officiants typically won’t give you a set fee, or you can ask the secretary in the place where you’re getting married for the rates.

Some places may only ask for a donation, or you may offer a stipend. Overall, expect to spend from $200 to $500 for a religious wedding officiant.  

On the other hand, a civil officiant is likely to give a quote for their services. It can range from $500 to $800, depending on potential inclusions such as premarital counseling, custom scripts, and rehearsal. 


Are you supposed to tip the wedding officiant?

It’s good practice to tip the wedding officiant. A reasonable amount to tip the officiant at your wedding is about 15% of the total service fee after the ceremony. 

You can also give them $100, especially if they are also helpful and involved in other wedding activities such as planning, vow preparations, and rehearsal. 


How much should you pay a friend to officiate a wedding?

It’s more common to give the friend or relative officiating your wedding a gift rather than paying them as with other officiants. This is to show your appreciation to them for officiating your wedding without making them feel like a hired person. 

If a friend or relative also suggested officiating your wedding, you should still give them a gift. And for those looking for tips, here is how to ask a friend to officiate your wedding


How much should I charge to officiate a wedding?

If you’re someone asked by a friend or relative to officiate their wedding, it would seem tacky to give a price for your service. But, on the other hand, chances are they’ll already help you get ordained and might even give you a gift to show their appreciation. 

Think of this opportunity to show your love and support to the couple when becoming their wedding officiant. Do not think of this role as a job and ask for compensation. 


Why Do Officiants Cost So Much?

Wedding officiants charge $200 or higher because they dedicate time and effort to the wedding. Some are also writing the vows, counseling the couple before the wedding, and coming to the rehearsal dinner. 

If you are having a destination wedding, the officiant may also need to spend on travel fees and accommodation. Therefore, expect to pay a higher cost if the officiant comes from a far place from your wedding venue.


Who Pays For The Officiant At A Wedding?

Regarding paying the wedding officiant, there are no specific rules to follow. But traditionally, the groom’s side is responsible for the expenses regarding the officiant, marriage license, and rehearsal dinner since most wedding costs are shouldered by the bride’s family. 


Do You Feed The Officiant At A Wedding?

It’s customary to feed the officiant, along with the other people who helped you in your wedding. So it’s only fitting that you invite them to eat since they’ll be at your wedding for a long time anyway.

Some couples who are friends with their officiant even invite them to dinners before or after the wedding. If there is a welcome dinner at a destination wedding, it’s not shocking to see the officiant there. 


Do You Give The Officiant A Gift?

A close friend or relative officiating your wedding is typically given a gift. But if you selected another officiant, the payment and tip typically suffice, and no extra gift is necessary. 



And that’s it! To recap how much to pay wedding officiant, it can start at $300 or higher. 

The cost for an officiant is that much because of the time and involvement they’ll do at your wedding. In addition, some extra expenses such as travel and accommodation can also increase their average price. 

We hope this gave you an idea of what to expect when getting a wedding officiant; please browse our blog for more wedding guides. 

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