Should I get wedding insurance?
Just about every couple who’s planning a wedding is looking for ways they can shave off a little of the costs here and there. If you’re one of those couples, the thought of saving a couple hundred dollars and skipping wedding insurance may sound appealing.
We’ll answer your questions about what wedding insurance covers, how much it costs, and when you need it and when you can get by without it.
What does wedding insurance cover?
Like with any kind of insurance coverage, hopefully you won’t need to file a claim, but it’s in place for the off chance that the unexpected occurs at your wedding and you have a major problem. Hopefully, your wedding will go off without a hitch and you’ll never think about insurance, but if you have trouble, wedding insurance can be a day-saver.
There are two major types of wedding insurance. The first one is related to cancellations. The second kind of insurance is for liability.
Cancellation-Related Insurance Coverage
Cancellation coverage will reimburse you for cancellation and postponement due to covered events.
- Sickness – If you, your fiance, or someone in your immediate family is sick and you have to postpone or cancel your plans, wedding insurance will help cover the money you won’t get back from your vendors.
- Major weather problems – If weather makes traveling to your wedding impossible — for example, you planned a beach wedding and there’s a hurricane — insurance will cover the costs of postponing.
- Vendor cancellations – If a vendor skips town with your deposit, wedding insurance can help you recoup that money.
Liability Insurance Coverage
If someone gets hurt at your reception or one of your guests damages something, liability coverage will help cover those costs.
- Injuries – This type of coverage works similarly to home insurance coverage. If someone is injured at your wedding, your wedding liability coverage will kick in.
- Damage – If you or your guests accidentally damage property at your venue, your insurance coverage will help cover the costs of repair.
- Venue protection – This type of coverage protects the venue from liability. Often, they require that you purchase this coverage if you use their venue.
- Alcohol – Depending on your venue and their insurance, this is one coverage type you should have if you’re serving alcohol. If there are alcohol-related injuries or damage, this insurance policy will cover those related costs.
- Additional coverage – If your gifts are stolen, insurance may be able to help you by reimbursing the value of those presents. You may also want a policy to include damage to the bride’s dress. If these or other incidents are things you want to be covered, make sure your policy provides those types of protection.
Destination weddings are a special case. Wedding insurance is just as important for a destination wedding as it is for a local wedding, but sometimes insurance providers exclude them.
It’s not too difficult to find coverage, though. You just need to make sure your provider will cover a destination wedding if that’s your plan.
Important COVID-19 Exclusions
It’s important to mention COVID-19’s impact on wedding insurance. You probably know of someone who canceled a wedding in 2020 thanks to the novel coronavirus. This year has made wedding cancellations commonplace whereas previously, it was a rare event.
Insurance companies are businesses, and when they take you on as a customer, they’re betting you won’t make a claim. When your personal risk, or the general risk of the population increases, they can’t safely bet on you anymore.
As a result of how common wedding cancellations have become, many insurers aren’t offering cancellation policies right now, and if they are, there is an almost universal COVID-19 exclusion.
What that means for you is that if you, your venue, or your vendors cancel due to COVID-19, you’re out of luck with getting reimbursement from insurance.
Most likely, post-COVID, weddings and insurance will settle back into a good balance. Weddings won’t be canceled left and right, and insurance will go back to providing coverage for most of the reasons that they would be canceled.
When you read what may be covered by wedding insurance, depending on your policy, it can start to look appealing, but how expensive is it?
How much does wedding insurance cost?
The answer to how much wedding insurance costs depends on a lot of factors. But you might be surprised by how affordable it is.
A wedding on a tight budget may cost around $350 total to insure for both liability and cancellation.
Typically, liability coverage provides a maximum limit of $1 million. If you need a higher level of coverage, it will cost a little more.
With an extravagant wedding, more money is on the line, and so an insurance company assumes a greater risk by insuring it, so naturally, it will cost more. Even with the fanciest wedding, the insurance probably won’t cost more than $1,000, which is a drop in the bucket for a $100,000 wedding.
Whether your wedding is small and intimate or large and extravagant, wedding insurance will provide valuable protection. It’s bad enough if something goes wrong at your wedding, but having to pay for it all out of pocket will make it even worse. Insurance can help protect your finances if things don’t go as planned.
But the real question is whether you actually need wedding insurance. We’ll get into the nitty-gritty of that next.
Can you get by without wedding insurance?
Sometimes, the answer is a flat-out no because your venue may require you to have a liability policy. If your venue doesn’t require it, though, there’s no law requiring you to have it.
Here are some circumstances in which you may not need coverage:
- You have a home insurance policy that covers events like weddings.
- Your vendors have their own insurance policies.
- Your venue has its own liability policy.
Sometimes, you can get a wedding rider added to your home insurance policy. That’s not always an option though, and sometimes the insurance company will require that the wedding be held at the insured home.
Even if you discover that your home insurance provider will also cover a wedding, you should consider the ramifications of making a claim. Your home insurance premiums may increase for years following a claim, whereas a stand-alone policy won’t impact any of your regular insurance policies.
If your vendors have their own policies, read through them, especially paying attention to exclusions. If you need something covered that’s excluded, you’ll need to purchase your own coverage that provides protection for that specific event.
The same considerations apply to a venue that has its own insurance policy. Don’t leave yourself liable because you thought their policy covered something it doesn’t.
There are a few situations where you can get by without wedding insurance. But generally, it’s excellent coverage to have. And the cost of the coverage is worth the protection it provides.
Don’t spend too long dwelling on what could go wrong, but if you consider just a few of the possibilities, you’ll start to understand just how beneficial wedding insurance can be.
This article was provided by Melanie Musson
Melanie Musson is an insurance researcher and writer for the insurance comparison site, InsuranceProviders.com. She is the fourth generation in her family to work in the insurance industry.