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Money Mailbag: do I really need wedding insurance?

Written by: Paloma Kubiak
‘We’re due to get married next summer and we’ve just put down a deposit to secure our dream venue. Our friends say we should take out wedding insurance just in case anything happens. Is it worth it? Sarah, Bournemouth.

Wedding insurance can protect you against a range of unfortunate events and help you make sure you are not out of pocket as a result.

Harry Rose, Which? money editor, says the question of whether it’s worth taking out insurance ultimately depends on the cost of your wedding, how worried you are about things going wrong and whether you have any existing protection.

If you pay for anything costing between £100 and £30,000 with a credit card, Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act means you can claim your money back from the provider if there’s a problem with goods or services due to a breach of contract.

If you pay by debit card or a Visa, MasterCard or American Express credit card for an item that costs less than £100, you may be able to use ‘chargeback’. This is when your card provider can try to get your money back from a retailer – but is not legally obliged to – if goods are damaged, not delivered or not as described.

If you are thinking about wedding insurance, different policies will have different exclusions and cover limits so you’ll need to check carefully your policy meets your needs.

If you’re planning to celebrate your marriage abroad, it’s vital you check the policy covers overseas ceremonies too.

Wedding insurance can also cover you for loss or damage to wedding attire such as the all-important dress, in addition to presents, the cake, rings, flowers and even the failure of services.

However, it won’t cover you if you or your fiancé get cold feet and most won’t cover bad weather for cancelling your big day.

Pricing varies, with some policies starting from as little as £17 from to a Debenhams policy starting at £59. The cheaper policy covers you for £5,000 of irrecoverable expenses if you have to cancel the wedding, £2,000 for attire, £2,000 for film or photography failures and £2,000 for supplier failure.

The pricier Debenhams policy covers up to £10,000 for irrecoverable expenses if you have to cancel, £5,000 for attire, £5,000 for photo or film and £5,000 for supplier failure.

Andy Newman, head of personal finance at Debenhams, says the additional cost is a “small price to pay for complete peace of mind”.

He added: “We tend to find that a policy is bought when the first big purchase is made. For some couples this is when the venue is booked, when the dress is bought or when the caterer is pencilled in.

“With planning beginning up to two years in advance of the big day, we have seen an increase in couples taking out insurance to protect them early on in the planning stages.”

If you’ll be going on honeymoon soon after your wedding, it’s important to note that separate insurance will need to be taken out.

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