Quantifying Inadequacy: New Study Shows Wedding Guests Spend More Than Intended on Their Appearances

Research shows that almost 50% of all couples end up spending more on their wedding than they initially budgeted for, but a new study from Britain shows that friends and family also spend more than they intended.

A survey of 1,000 adults, which was conducted by gift card company One4all, found that the total average cost associated with attending a wedding — the gift, the personal grooming, getting the car ready — was about £170 (about $263).

Interestingly, people don’t exclusively spend their money selflessly. The study found that one in four men admit to feeling under pressure to appear more successful, and happy than they actually are. In fact, 32% of men admitted to spending three hours or more getting ready for a wedding, and that they view weddings as places to show off their achievements, and/or attract new romantic partners.

Nearly half of the surveyed men even went so far as to say that they felt inadequate in comparison to the other guests. Consequently, they compensate by spending the same amount as women on grooming, clothing, and gifts for the wedding. Men even indulge in spray tans, professional shaves, and waxing treatment before a wedding. One in two men have also had their car thoroughly washed before the big day, while 7% actually said that they rented a car out of embarrassment of their own vehicle.

“The research has uncovered some interesting findings, especially surrounding men and the time, money and effort they’re investing when it comes to being a wedding guest, said Aoife Davey, Group Marketing Manager at One4all. “In particular, the fact that 42% of men see weddings as an opportunity to meet new people compared to 34% of women is fascinating. It would appear that men are becoming more gregarious, and willing to put themselves out there socially. As with high school or college reunions, there’s always a sense of competition at weddings when it comes to sharing achievements or success stories.”

At the very least, men don’t see weddings as opportunities for simple hookups. One in every 10 men has gone on to marry someone they actually met at a wedding.

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