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What does a Destination Wedding in Portugal cost?

Updated: May 14

After reading this article you will have a clear understanding of your budget´s worth in Portugal, which will allow you to align your expectations to what you actually can afford for your wedding day.

Wedding finances may be the least romantic part of your wedding, but yet a crucial aspect of planning.

Wedding Planner working a macbook in a cosy office

It's no secret that wedding finances are the NUMBER 1 cause of moderate to severe stress for most couples. No wonder. I mean, how often do you spend such a significant amount? After purchasing a house, a car, furniture and household supplies, weddings are one of the largest expenses in a couple´s life. Going over budget and not keeping track of expenses are the primary sources of wedding planning stress and in fact most couples (74% according to WeddingWire) seriously exceed their wedding budget.

👉 Do you want to be in control of your budget?

👉 You don´t want to be at risk of overspending?

👉 You want to be able to  enjoy the wedding planning journey without financial stress?.

Then we got you covered with this ´Master your Budget series`. We start with getting a clear understanding of your budget's worth, which  is CRUCIAL if you want to Master your budget for your destination wedding in Portugal.


In this blog you will learn:


Why it is important to know your budget´s worth in Portugal?

Let me ask you something – how much does a car cost? Most of us do have a general sense of car prices and the distinction between cheaper and more expensive car brands so this will avoid you from walking into - let´s say - a Tesla showroom with 20K to purchase their newest model. These benchmarks help us understand the value of our budget when shopping for a car.

Now, let's talk about something way more exciting – your destination wedding in Portugal. As destination wedding planners in Portugal, we get asked this question all the time: "What does a destination wedding in Portugal cost?" Weddings come in all shapes and sizes, so there's no one-size-fits-all answer.

And actually, you don't NEED a straightforward answer at this stage, because what your wedding in Portugal will cost YOU will eventually tell us. What you actually DO NEED at this stage, is getting a sense of value of your budget. Or in other words: What is your budget worth here in Portugal? What can be considered a minimum budget and is it possible to define a minimum required budget?

Why these questions are important? Not having any clue about the worth of your budget, will put you at serious risk of:

  • Overspending, because you expectations are not aligned with your budget:

  • Experiencing financial stress during the wedding planning process, as you try to navigate through the unknown:

  • Losing valuable time with sourcing vendors that you can´t afford

  • Disappointments, because you expect more than you actually can afford

Understand the Costs of a Wedding in Portugal

The first step is to clarify what we consider included in the budget. There is a big difference between an overall wedding budget, which includes EVERY-THING from attire & the wedding rings, to travel expenses, costs of accommodation and DIY items. 

When we talk about the budget for your destination wedding in Portugal, we consider included the local expenses for your wedding day only. Pre & post wedding days are not included in the first place. 

We can consider the following wedding expenses included in the budget: venue - catering (food & booze) - wedding celebrant - photographer - videographer - music during ceremony, cocktail, dinner and the party - live music - flowers - decorations - furniture rentals - (kids) entertainment - babysitting - favours - wedding cake - transportation - wedding planner

We don´t consider included: attire, rings, travel expenses, costs of accommodation (for guests), wedding invitations and postage, insurances (travel insurance, wedding insurance), DIY and honeymoon. 

The reason why we don´t include these expenses in the wedding budget, is because it is impossible to include a proper estimate, let alone defining a minimum value as this will highly depend on where you are living in the world and your standard of living.

Benchmark values for a Destination Wedding in Portugal

To get an idea of your budget´s worth, we need benchmark values. As the sky is the limit when it comes to wedding budgets, we will focus on three benchmark values:

  1. The Very Basics Budget

  2. The Essential Budget

  3. The Average Budget

Disclaimer: we don´t mean to say that you can´t organise a destination wedding for less than the Very Basics Budget. It is possible to organise a wedding in Portugal for less, by reducing the number of guests you invite to your wedding, by contracting cheaper vendors or by not contracting certain vendors at all. This means that you will consciously decide against certain vendors, fewer guests or simplify the whole experience. 

The Essential Budget is defined based on what it takes to organise a destination wedding, ensuring the quality of the whole experience for both you and your guests. 

While the Average Budget  is defined based on average expectations. For instance, most couples envision an al-fresco dinner. This often means that additional services such as lighting, decoration (not all venues allow to use their tables outdoor for instance) and heating (even in the summer, evenings can get chilly in Portugal) need to be contracted. We call these optional expenses.

Now grab your Free Wedding Budget Simulation below, which will provide you with a detailed wedding budget breakdown of the three benchmark budgets, the Very Basic Budget, Essential Budget and Average Budget.

What a destination wedding in Portugal will cost is something that only you can define. But the three benchmark values below will give you a sense of your budget´s worth. Keep in mind that these budgets are based on 50 wedding guests.

  • The Very Basics Budget is € 17,3K

  • The Essential Budget € 25K 

  • The Average budget € 30K

From Wedding Budget to Reality

Be aware of the fact that everything you wish to include beyond what is included in one of these budgets, will impact your budget or your priorities. If you are planning to organise your Destination Wedding in Portugal with a budget between € 25K and € 30K, but one of the following applies to your wishes and ideas, your budget will get more strained:

  • You will have more than 50 guests:

  • You want to organise a pre and/or post events:

  • You want to pay for accommodation for (a part of) your guests:

  • Your ceremony will take place in another venue as the receptions:

  • You have booked a venue that doesn´t provide all the facilities you require for plan A or plan B. (e.g. outdoor lighting for an al-fresco dinner or a salon where you can fit all of your guests in case of less fortunate weather conditions):

  • You have high standards and expectations for a luxury wedding.

So if you plan to have 70 wedding guests and you have a maximum budget of € 25.000,- and you want to organise a welcome cocktail the day before your wedding or you want to pay for accommodation for your closest relatives? In that case a budget of €25K – despite the fact that this is a hell-lot of money – it is considered a SMALL BUDGET for your wish list and

won´t allow too much room to splurge on luxury.

Now that you know what your budget is worth in Portugal, you will be able to

set realistic expectations. A clear understanding of your budget's worth helps set realistic expectations for the scale and scope of your wedding. It prevents disappointment and ensures that your plans align with your financial capabilities. Realistic expectations also contribute to a more enjoyable and stress-free wedding planning experience.

The next step to Master your Budget is to do your Wedding Budget homework first, before you do anything else. Even before hiring a wedding planner. Because a wedding planner also comes with a pricetag, a network and certain standards of quality which may go beyond your budget.

The only right thing to do after your engagement, is to properly plan and prepare your Wedmin, so that you can enjoy the wedding planning process worry-free.



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