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Best Wedding Loans for 2024

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updated: June 13, 2024

A wedding is meant to be one of the happiest days of your life, but planning that one day can be extremely stressful—not to mention expensive.

That’s more money than most of us have lying around, and the days of the bride’s family paying for everything are pretty much in the rearview mirror. So how, exactly, are you meant to pay for your dream wedding?

One option is a wedding loan, which is just an unsecured personal loan. Funds from a personal loan can be used for anything, such as a home improvement project, consolidating high-interest debt, or a large event like a wedding. We did the research and picked the top wedding loan lenders. You can borrow as little as $600 and as much as $100,000 through our hand-picked lenders, allowing you to plan your wedding without worrying about how to pay.

Best wedding loans compared

ProviderBest forLoan amountAPRMinimum credit scoreBetter Business Bureau rating
Secured loans
$2,000 to $50,000
8.99% to 35.99%
640
A+
Good credit
$2,500 to $40,000
7.99% to 24.99%
660
A+
Guaranteed low rates
$5,000 to $100,000
9.49% to 25.49%
660
A
Small loans
$600 to $50,000
8.99% to 17.99%
580
A+
Joint loans
$5,000 - $100,000
8.99% to 29.49%
680
A+
Loan comparison
$1,000 to $50,000
11.69% to 35.99%
Not disclosed
A+
Welcome bonus
$1,000 to $50,000
8.49% to 35.99%
580
A+
Bad credit
$1,000 to $50,000
7.8% to 35.99%
300
A+

Our recommendations

Best for secured loans: Best Egg

Best Egg

Best Egg

Best Egg

APR
8.99% to 35.99%
Loan amount
$2,000 to $50,000
Min. credit score
640
Description
A+

Most personal loans are unsecured, which means they’re not backed by any collateral, like your car or home. Best Egg offers unsecured loans, but if you own your home you could also get a secured loan in exchange for a lower interest rate.

This loan is secured by fixtures within your home rather than the home itself. A fixture is an object that is attached or fastened to your home. Depending on where you live, qualifying fixtures could include lighting, bathroom vanities, or built-in cabinets or shelving. While many people looking for a wedding loan will go with an unsecured loan, those who already own a home may prefer to take the secured-loan route with Best Egg.

Keep in mind that all personal loans from Best Egg have an origination fee, which adds to the total cost of borrowing. Also, loan products aren’t available in Iowa, Vermont, West Virginia, or the U.S. Territories; if you live in any of these areas, you’ll need to look elsewhere for a loan. But if you do qualify, Best Egg can fund your loan as soon as the day after approval. The lender will consider financial factors besides your credit score, which could be beneficial if your score is low.

Why we like it: Best Egg offers a secured loan option that could result in a lower interest rate—and, therefore, a lower cost to borrow the money.

Pros:

  • Secured and unsecured personal loans are available.
  • Next-day funding is available.
  • Best Egg will consider factors besides credit score to build a rate.

Cons:

  • All personal loans have an origination fee of 0.99% to 8.99%.
  • Not available in Iowa, Vermont, West Virginia, or U.S. Territories.

Best for good credit: Discover

Discover

Discover

Discover

APR
7.99% to 24.99%
Loan amount
$2,500 to $40,000
Min. credit score
660
Description
A+

To get a personal loan from Discover, you must have a credit score of at least 660, which is considered “good.” That’s great news if your credit score falls in that range, as it opens the door to rates as low as 7.99%. Your loan will often be funded the day after it’s approved, so you don’t have to worry about when you’ll receive your funds. Since Discover loans are intended for those with good credit, the lender doesn’t allow joint loans or co-signers. Those who need to apply with their partner or a family member will need to borrow from a different lender.

Discover offers loan terms from three to seven years, so you can choose the best term for you. And there are no prepayment penalties, so you can pay off your loan before the term ends and not face any fees. Overall, Discover is a solid choice regarding personal loans for a wedding.

Why we like it: If you have a good credit score, Discover could be your best match for a wedding loan with a low interest rate.

Pros:

  • Loan terms range from three years to seven years.
  • Next-day funding is available.
  • There are no prepayment penalties.

Cons:

  • There is no option for co-signers.

Best for guaranteed low rates: LightStream

LightStream

LightStream

LightStream

APR
9.49% to 25.49%
Loan amount
$5,000 to $100,000
Min. credit score
660
Description
A

LightStream is a notable option for a wedding loan for several reasons. First, you can get same-day funding if your loan is approved before 2:30 p.m. EST. You can also choose among several loan terms, from as little as two years to as many as 20 years. LightStream doesn’t charge fees or prepayment penalties and you can get a loan as high as $100,000 to help pay for your wedding. On the downside, there is no prequalification process, so you can’t see your rate without submitting an official application and undergoing a hard credit check.

Where LightStream stands out the most is its Rate Beat Program. If you are approved for an unsecured loan by a competing lender with the same loan terms but a lower rate, LightStream will offer a rate of 0.10 percentage points lower than the competing rate. This can help assure you that you’re truly getting the best rate possible.

Why we like it: LightStream Rate Beat Program makes it easier to get a wedding loan with a low APR if you plan on applying to multiple lenders.

Pros:

  • The Rate Beat program lets you get a lower rate than competing lenders.
  • Available loan amounts up to $100,000.
  • There are no fees or prepayment penalties.
  • Same-day funding is available.
  • Loan terms range from two years to 20 years.

Cons:

  • There is no prequalification process.

Best for small loans: PenFed Credit Union

PenFed

PenFed

PenFed

APR
8.99% to 17.99%
Loan amount
$600 to $50,000
Min. credit score
580
Description
A+

If you need a small loan with no origination fee, PenFed Credit Union is a top choice. You can get a loan for as little as $600—relatively low for a wedding, but helpful if you’re planning an intimate gathering with a couple of close friends or family members. Loans go up to $50,000 if you need more money for your wedding. You must be a member of PenFed Credit Union to apply for a personal loan, but anyone can join. Several benefits to membership might make this extra step worth it. For example, credit union members can get discounts on car purchases and insurance, home-security systems, cellphone plans, and more.

PenFed Credit Union doesn’t charge an origination fee, which keeps the cost of borrowing down. The lender also has a relatively low APR range of 8.99% to 17.99%. Loan terms range from one to five years.

Why we like it: While other lenders have a minimum loan amount of $1,000 or more, PenFed Credit Union offers loans as low as $600—perfect if you just need a little extra money to achieve your dream wedding.

Pros:

  • Loan amounts start at $600.
  • Relatively low APR range.
  • There is no origination fee.
  • Loan terms range from one year to five years.

Cons:

  • You must be a PenFed Credit Union member to get a loan.

Best for joint loans: SoFi

Big loan amounts
Sofi

Sofi

Big loan amounts

Sofi

APR
8.99% to 29.49%
Loan amount
$5,000 - $100,000
Min. credit score
680
Description
A+

If you want to apply for a joint loan with your partner or a family member, SoFi is an excellent choice. Adding a co-borrower to your loan may help you qualify for a larger loan and lower interest rates (SoFi accepts co-borrowers, not co-signers.) Loans are up to $100,000, so if you’re planning a large wedding, and can afford the loan payments, SoFi could be your best option. However, SoFi’s minimum loan amount of $5,000 is relatively high, so those looking for smaller loans need a different lender.

SoFi offers same-day funding for many loans signed before 7 p.m. ET on a business day, so you can get your money quickly to pay for wedding-related expenses. Loan terms range from two to seven years; you can choose the repayment period that works best for you.

Why we like it: SoSoFiFi is a solid choice if you want to apply for a wedding loan with a co-borrower—which could yield a higher loan amount than you’d qualify for on your own.

Pros:

  • Joint loan options are available.
  • Available loan amounts up to $100,000.
  • Same-day funding is possible.
  • Loan terms range from two years to seven years.

Cons:

  • High minimum loan amount.

Best for loan comparison: Universal Credit

Universal Credit

Universal Credit

Universal Credit

APR
11.69% to 35.99%
Loan amount
$1,000 to $50,000
Min. credit score
Not disclosed
Description
A+

Universal Credit is a loan marketplace, which means you can shop more easily for loans. When you fill out an application, Universal Credit will present you with multiple loan offers so you can comparison-shop. As loans start at just $1,000 and go up to $50,000, you're likely to find an option that works for your needs. However, loan term choices are limited to three years to five years. You’ll need to find another lender if you need a shorter or longer term than Universal Credit offers.

Additionally, all personal loans have an origination fee ranging from 5.25% to 9.99%, which increases the cost of borrowing money for your wedding. But there are no additional fees and no prepayment penalties, so you can pay off your loan early without being penalized. Next-day funding is available so you can get your wedding money quickly and start making deposits.

Why we like it: If you want to make sure you’re getting the best rate, Universal Credit enables you to compare multiple wedding-loan options to find the perfect fit.

Pros:

  • Ability to compare multiple loan offers.
  • Available loan amounts start at $1,000.
  • No prepayment penalties or fees.
  • Next-day funding is possible.

Cons:

  • Loan terms range from three years to five years.
  • All personal loans have a 5.25% to 9.99% origination fee.

Best for welcome bonus: Upgrade

Upgrade

Upgrade

Upgrade

APR
8.49% to 35.99%
Loan amount
$1,000 to $50,000
Min. credit score
580
Description
A+

Upgrade offers personal loans starting at $1,000, making it ideal for those who only need a small loan to pay for their wedding. What’s more, personal loans aren’t the only financial products Upgrade offers. And if you open an Upgrade Rewards Checking account at the same time as taking out your loan—and fund the account with at least $1,000—Upgrade will give you a $200 welcome bonus. If you’re getting a personal loan that will be paid into the checking account, the welcome bonus is all but guaranteed.

Loan terms with Upgrade last for two to seven years. You can apply for a loan with a co-signer or co-borrower, which means you could qualify for a larger loan amount or a lower interest rate. Upgrade is only available in 27 states, so if you live outside its service area you’ll need to find a different lender.

Why we like it: If you take out a personal loan from Upgrade and also open an Upgrade Rewards Checking account, you could get a $200 welcome bonus to put toward your wedding budget.

Pros:

  • Loan amounts start at $1,000.
  • $200 welcome bonus if you also open a checking account.
  • Loan terms range from two years to seven years.
  • You can apply for a joint loan or use a co-signer.

Cons:

  • Only available in 27 states.

Best for bad credit: Upstart

Upstart

Upstart

Upstart

APR
7.8% to 35.99%
Loan amount
$1,000 to $50,000
Min. credit score
300
Description
A+

When you have bad credit, or just a thin credit file, it can be difficult to be approved for a personal loan. Upstart may be able to help, as the service considers factors in addition to credit scores when processing loan applications. This can make it easier to find a loan if you’re worried about qualifying with a less-than-ideal credit score. UpStart is also a marketplace rather than the actual lender, so you can compare multiple loan offers to find the right one.

All personal loans through Upstart have an origination fee, though the website does not disclose the specifics. Loan terms are also on the short side at three to five years. But the service has a large range of loan amounts, from $1,000 to $50,000, and next-day funding is available. There are also no prepayment penalties, so you can pay off your loan early if possible without paying any additional fees.

Why we like it: Just because you have bad credit (or not much of a score yet) doesn’t mean you have to settle for a subpar loan. UpStart considers factors in addition to credit score, which could make it easier for you to qualify for a wedding loan.

Pros:

  • May accept borrowers with low credit scores.
  • Available loan amounts start at $1,000.
  • Next-day funding is possible.
  • No prepayment penalties.

Cons:

  • Origination fee for personal loans isn’t disclosed in advance.
  • Loan terms range from three to five years.

Methodology

To develop this list of the best wedding loans, we reviewed top-rated lenders and compared their offerings to see which ones stood out. We considered APR ranges, available loan amounts, and loan terms. We also checked each lender’s rating with the Better Business Bureau to ensure they were worthy of inclusion on this list. Our final choices were then given awards based on their strengths.

How to select the best wedding loans

When searching for the best loan to fund your wedding it’s essential to consider the following when narrowing down the selection:

APR range

The APR on a personal loan, expressed as a percentage, reflects all the costs of borrowing the money. These costs include the interest rate and fixed fees the lender charges, such as an origination fee. A lower APR means lower monthly payments on the loan.

Loan terms

A loan term is the amount of time you have to repay the loan. Terms could be as short as a year or as long as 20 years, though most lenders have loan terms of two years to seven years. Shorter terms usually mean larger monthly payments since you have less time to repay the loan, but you’ll probably pay less in interest over the life of the loan.

Loan amounts

Before applying for a loan, determine how much you need to borrow. Then, check to see what loan amounts each lender offers. You might see options as low as $600 or $1,000 or as high as $100,000. Make sure your potential lenders offer the loan amount you need and avoid taking out more than you’ve budgeted for.

Alternatives to wedding loans

Not sure if a wedding loan is the best option? Other funding options include drawing on your savings to pay for your wedding, using a 0% interest credit card or a rewards credit card, or simply downsizing your wedding and lowering your budget. This list leaves out the additional—but obvious—option of getting financial help from family or friends.

Dip into your savings

Use some of your savings to help pay for your wedding if possible. It’s important to ensure you still have enough money in your savings account for an emergency so make sure you leave enough in your account. This might cover what you need or allow you to get a smaller wedding loan to make up the shortfall.

If your wedding is booked for a date fairly far into the future, plan to save as much as you can beforehand to help fund your wedding. Take advantage of high-yield savings accounts, certificates of deposit (CDs), and other types of deposit accounts that will maximize your interest earnings.

Apply for a 0% interest credit card

You may qualify for a credit card with a 0% interest introductory rate if you have good credit. These cards may have promotional periods of up to 21 months. If you can pay off your balance in full before the promo period runs out, you can save a ton of money on interest.

You can use this type of card for some purchases, such as the dress or the flowers, and use savings or a loan to cover larger expenses, like venue rental or catering.

Take advantage of rewards cards

If you have a rewards credit card, use it to pay for smaller expenses, such as decorations or wedding favors. You can get cash back on your purchases or even travel rewards that you can use to fund your honeymoon.

Downsize your wedding

The easiest way to pay for a wedding is to spend less on the event. Expenses for any large event can quickly get out of hand, but that can be even more true with weddings, where everything is marked up. Consider where you can cut back so your budget is smaller. You might still need a loan to help cover the cost, but you can get a smaller loan that you can repay more quickly.

More on wedding loans

What is a wedding loan?

A wedding loan is simply an unsecured personal loan. Some lenders may market them as “wedding loans,” but in most cases, you’ll just apply for a personal loan and use the funds for a wedding.

Personal loan funds can be used for anything, from a big event like a wedding to a much-needed home improvement. Depending on the lender, you’ll have anywhere between one year and 20 years to pay it back.

Wedding loan pros and cons

Wedding loans can help you pay for your dream day, but it’s not all sunshine and rainbows. With a wedding loan, you get a lump sum of cash to fund your wedding, and you could receive those funds the same day you apply or within a couple of business days. Paying back an installment loan can also positively impact your credit score. However, if your credit score is poor when you apply, you may be charged a very high rate and be repaying the loan for a long time.

ProsCons
Receive funds as soon as the same day or the next day after you apply.
If your credit score is poor, you may receive a high interest rate.
Boost your credit as you repay the loan.
If you choose a long term, you might be paying back the loan for years.
Receive a lump sum of cash you can use to pay for wedding expenses.
Personal loans have fixed interest rates and fixed monthly payments.

Cost of a wedding loan

The cost of a wedding loan depends on several factors. Of the lenders listed here, APRs range from 7.8% to 35.99%. APR includes all fees associated with the loan, including interest rate, origination fees, and any other set fees charged by the lender.

Some lenders don’t charge origination fees, which can decrease the overall cost of the loan. Other lenders might charge fees for repaying the loan before the term is up. Check for a prepayment penalty and try to get a loan without one.

How to get a wedding loan

There are several steps to take when getting a wedding loan. The first step is to choose the right lender—you might find one of the lenders listed here is a good fit or identify a local lender with lower rates. Once you’ve chosen some contenders, here’s how the process works:

  1. Get prequalified and compare loan offers from several of your top picks.
  2. Apply for your chosen loan. Most lenders have an online application, or you can apply in person or over the phone if those are options. You must supply your name, address, Social Security number, and proof of identification. The lender will then do a hard credit check to determine your creditworthiness and either approve or deny your application.
  3. If your application is approved, the lender will deposit the funds into your account. Depending on the lender, the money can clear the same day you apply, or it might take a day or two before you see it.

When to consider a joint wedding loan with your spouse

Since you’re getting married, you might think sharing the burden of a wedding loan with your spouse-to-be is a good idea. In some cases, it can be. For example, if one of you has a great credit score and the other has a low-end good score, the loan could help the other spouse boost their credit. However, if one of the applicants has a poor or fair credit score, you could get a much higher interest rate. In that case, it’s best to let the spouse with the better credit score be the sole applicant.

TIME Stamp: Weigh the pros and cons of a wedding loan

According to online wedding-planning resource Zola, in 2024 the average wedding is costing $33,000 ($35,000 in 2023, says even-less-comforting data from the wedding website The Knot).

Taking out a personal loan to pay for your wedding has advantages and disadvantages. Typically, personal loans have lower interest rates compared to credit cards, and you repay them in fixed monthly installments over a few or several years.

In a perfect world, it’s wise to save up for your wedding as much as possible or scale down plans so that you don’t start off married life burdened with debt and the accompanying stress.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Do wedding loans affect your credit score?

Getting prequalified for a wedding loan will most likely not affect your credit score since many lenders do a soft credit check as part of the process. But once you’ve chosen a loan and submitted an application, the lender will perform a hard credit check, slightly affecting your credit score.

Personal loans can help you boost your credit score if you make all payments on time. On the other hand, you’ll probably see your credit score drop if you start falling behind. That’s why it’s vital only to take on as much debt as you can reasonably afford to pay back.

Should you get a wedding loan?

If it’s possible to pay for your wedding without taking out an unsecured personal loan, it’s best to do so. However, a wedding loan can help you pay for your dream ceremony and reception if you don’t have the money to pay for it. However, taking on a large personal loan to pay for a large, one-time event like a wedding is inadvisable. A small loan can be more than manageable to pay back, but if you take on too much debt to pay for your wedding, you’ll find that married life starts out stressful and expensive.

How is my personal loan rate decided?

The exact process for determining personal loan rates varies by lender. However, most lenders will check your credit score and history, employment status, and income to determine how risky it will be to lend you money. Rates can also vary depending on the length of the loan. Shorter loans are less lucrative to lenders since they collect interest payments for only a short time, so interest rates for shorter loans may be higher than for longer loans.

The information presented here is created independently from the TIME editorial staff. To learn more, see our About page.

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