Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will be married in England on Saturday, and members of the media have covered the royal wedding from just about every conceivable angle. However, not much has been written about who is paying for the massive event.
According to Business Insider, the wedding will cost an estimated $45.8 million. In comparison, the 2011 wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton cost $34 million.
Who will get stuck with the bill? Three different parties.
Experts say that the biggest expense for a royal wedding is security and police protection. For example, police protection for Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding cost $8.7 million, half of which was for police overtime. This portion of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding bill will be paid by the U.K. government.
The next biggest wedding expense will be the wedding itself, including invitations, flowers, food and music. This will be paid by the royal family. The family makes its money through a sovereign grant funded by the Crown Estate’s yearly profits. Queen Elizabeth II will earn approximately $105 million from these profits in 2018.
The last expense for the big event is the wedding dress. Markle has reportedly chosen a $550,000 gown, and she is expected to foot the bill herself. Given that she earned millions during her acting career, that shouldn’t be a problem.
While Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding is jaw-droppingly expensive, it is worth it to the U.K. economy. Experts say the country will rake in around $1.43 billion through tourism, merchandising and public relations perks.