Sober Vows: Spike in Alcohol-free Weddings

If you’ve somehow missed the news, “Bennifer” finally got hitched! That’s right, last week Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck rushed to the alter in Las Vegas (the marriage capitol of the world) to finally tie the knot after 20 years of ups and downs.

Pop the champagne to celebrate! Or…not? Las Vegas might be known for its unique wedding ceremonies and alcohol-induced decisions, but a new less wild option is gaining momentum all over the country: dry weddings.

What Is a “Dry Wedding”?

Bride with water at sober wedding

A “dry wedding” is a wedding without alcohol; it’s as simple as that. Reasons for hosting a dry wedding vary from financial to religious to personal preference. The Knot 2021 Real Wedding Study found that the amount of money spent on liquor at a wedding averaged around $2,300. For weddings with 100+ guests, the alcohol bill easily exceeds $3,000. That can be a hefty price tag for couples trying to stick to a budget.

The emerging dry wedding trend is particularly popular among millennials and has gained momentum from the “sober curious” movement. According to data reported by the market-research firm Nielsen, two-thirds of young adults between 21 and 34 in the U.S. say they are trying to drink less alcohol. With growing interest in sober nuptials, many wedding-targeted websites and blogs are sharing their favorite tips and tricks for planning the perfect dry wedding.

Tips for Planning a Sober Ceremony and Reception

There is a lot you can do to plan the perfect alcohol-free wedding day, and many resources out there too if you run out of ideas! A few tips for planning a sober wedding include:

  • Make your guests aware your wedding will be “dry”: This can be done by including your no-alcohol policy in the invitation or writing it in the FAQ section of your wedding website. Just make sure to be informative and clear early on.
  • Do not feel obligated to justify your choice to have a sober wedding: You do not need to explain your choices; it’s your wedding day!
  • Provide your guests with a variety of non-alcoholic options: Get creative with your offered celebratory beverages through fancy or signature mocktails, a kombucha bar, a coffee bar, a soda bar, or a boba cart.
  • Have your wedding early in the day or on a weekday: Consider having a morning or early afternoon wedding when people are less likely to consume alcohol. Side note: this can be a great way to save money, as venues are usually less expensive during the work-week.

With so many resources available on sober weddings (thank you Martha Stewart), the only “dry” thing about your big day will be the lack of liquor.

Benefits of Saying “I Do” Sober

There are a lot of benefits to hosting a dry wedding including:

  • You won’t have to worry about intoxicated and out-of-control guests.
  • The wedding becomes less about the free booze and more about celebrating the couple, family, friendships, etc.
  • Your venue options grow when alcohol isn’t a factor.
  • You won’t have to worry about guests getting home safely.
  • You’ll have clear memories of your big day.
  • No hangover the next day! You’ll be refreshed and ready for the honeymoon.
  • You can save the money or spend it on a different aspect of the wedding.

One more major benefit: you might knowingly (or unknowingly) be providing a safe haven for guests recovering from alcohol addiction who are trying to stay away from triggering situations. And, if you have guests that chafe against your dry wedding and can’t fathom not drinking during the event, this may be a chance for them to evaluate their own reliance on alcohol. 

Rehab for Alcohol & Drug Addiction in Las Vegas

Desert Hope is a rehab facility in Las Vegas, NV that provides drug & alcohol addiction treatment. With over 13,000 patients treated, Desert Hope provides exceptional care through evidence-based addiction treatment. Patients are offered a full continuum of care.

For more information on what Desert Hope offers or the admissions process, call or check your insurance through our quick and confidential form.


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