The good news is, LGBT couples still spend a lot less on weddings than heterosexual couples.

It’s been two years since the Supreme Court ruled in favor of same-sex marriage and LGBT couples seem to be singing “first comes love, then comes savings,” on their way to the altar.

It doesn’t matter whether they’re lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender — on average, their engagement rings and weddings cost half as much as straight couples, says a recent study from wedding site The Knot.

Heterosexual couples in the U.S. spend $35,329 on average on their weddings. You can have the average gay wedding and the average lesbian wedding for that money — $18,409 and $17,341 respectively.

And same-sex couples make more money on average to start with. Unmarried same-sex couples earn $111,223 yearly, one-third more than unmarried heterosexual couples ($69,511). Married gay couples earn $115,000 yearly, while married straight couples earn $101,487.

LGBT wedding trends

Since same-sex marriage became legal in 2015, couples have been rushing to get married. In less than six months after the ruling was made, 96,000 same sex couples who were living together got married. Now more than 1 million LGBT couples in the U.S. are married, up 547,000 from 491,000 in 2016.

Not surprisingly, last year the costs of same-sex unions increased when it became legal to marry. In 2015, a study from Nerdwallet predicted gay marriage would increase the wedding industry by $2.5 billion annually.

“To-be-weds are opting for mixed-gender wedding parties, personalized processionals and unique twists to long-standing traditions,” says The Knot editor-in-chief Kellie Gould.“These trends are in no way exclusive to same-sex couples, but are growing in popularity with this community.”

The Knot’s 2016 LGBTQ wedding study says current numbers are nearly as low as they were in 2015, before same-sex marriage was legal. Gay male couples spent $33,822, which increased from $18,242 in 2015. Lesbian couples spent $25,334 last year, which increased from $16,218 in 2015.

Leaving tradition behind

The Knot’s 2016 LGBT study showed a 53 percent increase in overall family acceptance of same-sex couples from men and women, up by a quarter since 2015. Family approval and willingness to help with LGBT weddings increased to 43 percent for men and 44 percent for women in 2016.

The total number of guests at same-sex weddings has increased by more than 70 attendants on average for LGBT couples.

Some LGBT couples even feel they’re being pushed into marriage now, with 10 percent of women and 15 percent of men saying they “felt more pressure to get married.” The length of engagement time decreased by two months for gay to-be-weds.

Couples are getting dressed together in the same room: 48 percent of men and 17 percent of women saw their partner before getting married to them, The Knot and Q Digital’s 2017 wedding study says.

Gay women say they are more likely to propose on one knee than gay men, and more couples are proposing to each other, showing one is not choosing a traditional gender role found in typical, societal wedding norms.

Same-sex couples are also changing gender roles on who stands at the altar in the bridal parties. Over 80 percent of LGBT couples had a loved one standing with them at the altar. Forty-one percent of male couples had a maid of honor or best woman. Thirty-six percent of women had a man of honor or best man.

Even Wagner’s Bridal Chorus is being left behind. Only three percent of men and two percent of women walked down the aisle to the traditional wedding song. Instead same-sex couples are personalizing their ceremony by including reading of the historic Supreme Court ruling that legalized same sex marriage, Obergefell v. Hodges.

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Meet the Author

Joe Pye

Joe Pye

Associate editor

Pye is the associate editor of

Budgeting & Saving, Family

couples, marriage, save money, wedding

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Article last modified on July 13, 2017 Published by, LLC . Mobile users may also access the AMP Version: Same-Sex Weddings Are Getting More Expensive - AMP.