When Is Wedding Season?

Plus, when the off-season occurs.
maddy sims the knot associate editor
Maddy Sims
maddy sims the knot associate editor
Maddy Sims
Associate Editor
  • Maddy writes for The Knot, with a specialty in beauty, sustainability, mental health and inclusivity.
  • Before joining The Knot Worldwide, Maddy wrote for several different publications, including Insider, Bustle, Real Simple and Apartment Therapy.
  • Maddy has a Bachelor's degree in magazine journalism and a Master's degree in health, science and environmental reporting (both of which are from Northwestern's Medill School ...
Updated Mar 02, 2022

When selecting your wedding date, there are several different factors to consider. Your preferred season, for example, can help determine when to book your venue. However, there's another season you'll want to keep in mind: wedding season. It's the time of year when most weddings happen. Prices during this time period are typically higher, as there's more demand for vendors and venues. Prices in the off-season, on the other hand, are usually lower as less couples are getting married and there's more availability. But there's a reason why so many couples plan their nuptials during wedding season. The temperate weather allows more outdoor wedding ceremonies, ensures guest comfort and practically guarantees gorgeous photos.

So, is it better to get married during wedding season or the off-season? There's no correct answer—there are pros and cons to both. Below, we break down everything you need to know about wedding season (and the off-season) to help you and your partner make the best decision. Once you've narrowed down your options, we recommend heading over to The Knot to talk to nearby wedding planners and get quotes for different dates.

When is wedding season?

Peak wedding season (aka the most popular time of year to get married) varies slightly from year to year, but typically, summer and early fall are the most popular times to get married. According to our 2021 Real Weddings Study, 80% of all weddings took place between May to October. To be specific, the most popular wedding months are June (13%), August (13%) and October (22%).

For many couples, things like warm weather, an outdoor venue or fall foliage are important. But this is the busiest time of the year for wedding venues and vendors, so costs will likely be higher. Pro tip: If you're planning a destination wedding, check with local planners to see when the peak and off-seasons occur so you can adjust your timeline accordingly.

It's important to note that last year's numbers may be slightly skewed, as even fewer events occurred the first half of the year due to higher COVID case rates and vaccinations not being readily available yet. By the time fall rolled around, people were feeling more comfortable gathering, so more couples were able to host their big day. So though the summer and fall are usually the most popular times for weddings, they were even more popular in 2021.

Most Popular Months to Get Married

It's no surprise that fall weddings were the most popular among couples getting married. According to our data, 40% of all couples exchanged vows during pumpkin spice season. The cooler months offer temperate weather (not too hot and not too cold), pretty fall foliage and fun food and cocktail opportunities. According to our data, the most popular month to get married was October, as 22% of all couples exchanged vows then. Early fall continued to be popular among couples, as 11% of them also got married in September.

When is wedding off season?

In most parts of the country, the deep winter months (January, February and March) are the least popular for weddings. In fact, only 5% of weddings take place during winter, according to our study. Per our data, 3% of weddings took place in December, 1% took place in January and 1% took place in February. Don't let that deter you from booking your big day in the winter. Your wedding pictures will look absolutely gorgeous, and you'll have the chance to brainstorm some amazing cocktails and food ideas while wedding planning. Plus, your guests and wedding party likely have more availability during this time, as there are less weddings on their schedules.

Since there's less demand, you'll likely get quoted lower prices on your reception site, not to mention most of your other wedding services, like catering, photography and flowers (except around Valentine's Day and Easter, of course, when roses and lilies are at a premium because they're in high demand). So if you want to save money on your wedding—and don't mind a chance of snow or rain on your wedding day— try picking a winter wedding date.

Though winter is a less popular time to wed, it's still a season of love. Forty percent of proposals occur between November and February, giving winter the nickname "proposal season". And after couples have a chance to celebrate their engagement, wedding planning season kicks off in late winter/early spring, marked by National Wedding Planning Day on March 1st.

Cheapest Month to Get Married

While you may automatically assume that December, January and February are the least expensive months to get married in, there are other factors to consider. December is a holiday month (New Year's Eve, for example), so many venues and vendors might be charging a premium for their services on your special day. Similarly, February can be a pricey month, as Valentine's Day occurs during the winter month. If you're concerned about your wedding budget, consider exchanging vows in January. Additionally, you can try two other less-popular months: March (which had 2% of all weddings) or April (which had 5% of all weddings).

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