There is plenty of 'common knowledge' about diamond engagement rings - such as the myths that engagement rings cost x month's salary and so on - there isn't a lot of talk about wedding band budgeting.
Sure, the cost of the diamond engagement ring is hugely important, but it might be just as important for you to know how much you should expect to spend on wedding bands, because the cost might coming out of your wedding budget. Between the venue, the flowers, and the dress, you might have to make some trade-offs in your different budgets.
Like with engagement rings, when someone asks me, well, what is the average price of a wedding band, the answer is...it depends. But, because nobody is satisfied with that answer, here's how I like to explain it:
The National Average
The beautiful thing about wedding bands is that there are hundreds of options to choose from. And, because there are limitless options, you can find the perfect wedding band with any budget.
You're probably thinking - Okay, but I need a number to work with. Are men's bands and a women's bands around the same price or will one cost more? Are wedding bands as big of a purchase as the engagement ring? Are there large differences in price depending on the different elements of the ring, like how a 1 carat ring can range so greatly in price?
The national average is a good place to start because it is relatable and give you some perspective. It was just released that couples spend an average of $1,417 on the bride's band and an average of $558 on the groom's band. Based on these numbers alone, combining the two national averages shows reveal that many Americans spend an average of $1,975 on both of the wedding bands. While that s a great starting point, you are going to want to read on to learn what affects the price of a wedding band beyond what is considered the average.
Wedding Ring Metals
There are a lot of factors that will affect the cost of wedding bands. The first deciding factor is the metal that you choose. A plain, white gold band will be less expensive than the same band in platinum, and will definitely be less expensive than any band with diamond embellishments. But, remember that you are getting what you are paying for. For example, in recent years a comfort fit, tungsten wedding band has been rising in popularity for men, which is considerably less expensive than the same band but in rose gold, but you can't resize or repair tungsten, so if your finger changes sizes, you have to get a whole new ring! Wedding bands also come in different widths, so the more metal that is in the ring, the more it will cost. (To find what width is right for you, check out this article we wrote for men's wedding bands).
Adding Diamonds To The Band
Adding diamonds into the wedding band is going to cost you as well. And, according to recent polls, most brides today want diamonds in their wedding bands. Depending on if you want a 5-stone band, or an eternity (or infinity) band that features diamonds all the way around, the carat weight of the diamonds, the quality of the diamonds, and the amount of diamonds are going to determine the price of the ring. To get an idea of prices, you can browse a sample of the rings that we carry online.
Matching Your Engagement Ring
Do you want to match your wedding band perfectly to your engagement ring? If so, your options are going to be limited for what you can pick from. You might be able to easily find the price of the matching wedding band, so take a look at this price and see if it fits into your budget. There are plenty of similar style bands that could probably also work to match your ring.
The price for your band may also increase if you decide to custom design a ring in order to have it perfectly match your unique engagement ring. A lot of brides end up picking a wedding band that doesn't exactly match, but "goes" in terms of style and color, which is a great option as well.
Another factor which may add on to the cost of your band is if you decide to get your bands engraved or not. At Long's, adding a personalized engraving to your wedding band is free. But that's not always true with every jeweler, and the costs will go up if you get your ring hand engraved versus machine engraved.
In the end, it's important to take in account your budget, but to also remember that your wedding rings are one of the only things from your wedding that will last forever and you will enjoy every day for a lifetime! Sacrifice somewhere else in your total wedding spend! Another thing to remember is that you're not married to the ring, so you can always upgrade your wedding ring later on...the perfect solution if you have a tight budget now.