Nerida McMurray Photography—Getty Images
By Martha C. White
March 30, 2016

Sure, she’s your bestie, but did you ever stop and tally up how much you’re spending to be her bridesmaid?

On second thought, maybe don’t bother: It’ll probably just make you a little resentful to realize that you dropped an average of $1,324 for the privilege of standing up for her in dyed shoes and a dress you’ll be lucky to make a costume out of later on. And you’ll do that an average of three times by the time you’re 27, according to new data from Priceonomics, bringing your total outlay to just under four grand. Ouch.

While people tend to make a big deal out of the cost of bridesmaids’ dresses, at an average of $165, that’s just the tip of the average bridesmaid’s purchasing iceberg. You’ll also have to pay for shoes, accessories and — unless your girl is coming from or marrying into a seriously wealthy family and helping her bridal party foot the bill — a hair-nails-makeup combo platter.

The biggest chunk of change you’ll spend will go to the bridal shower and bachelorette party, with those two events totaling just over $500, or 38% of the total. If you have to travel to a destination wedding, which more than half of you will — and especially if there’s a plane ticket involved — that’s another big cost, averaging $317. And after all that, you’ve still got to get your friend a gift, which will run an average of $125.

Women in the Northeast shell out the most, with an average cost of $1,466, while women in the Midwest get away with the relatively bargain price of $1,178. Women in the West spend the most on travel and lodging, and those in the Northeast pay the highest for all of the other spending categories. Behind their Northeastern sisters, Southern bridesmaids spend the most on dresses, showers and gifts. Southern hospitality, y’all!

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