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Who Will Foot the Bill For Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's Wedding?

The royal celebrations won't come cheap.
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While old-school etiquette suggests the bride's family is responsible for the cost of a wedding, in the case of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's upcoming nuptial celebration, the groom's relatives are picking up the tab.

A statement released by Kensington Palace following the announcement of the couple's engagement reads, "As was the case with the wedding of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, The Royal Family will pay for the core aspects of the wedding, such as the church service, the associated music, flowers, decorations, and the reception afterwards."

British wedding planner Aimee Dunne, who specializes in high-end celebrations, estimates the day could cost upwards of £500,000.

"I can't imagine Harry and Meghan would be able to achieve the wedding they would be looking at on anything less than £500,000+," she told CNN.

Others have estimated it could cost up to such as British wedding app Bridebook, has estimated that it could cost up to $43 million.

That said, the financial burden won't fall entirely on the Windsor clan. Specifically, Markle will likely pay for her own dress, which is rumored to cost £100,000 (about $135,600).

“Meghan’s dress is expected to cost hundreds of thousands of dollars,” E!’s royal expert Melanie Bromley told Harper's Bazaar. “It’s going to be featured in the history books so needs to stand the test of time.”

In 2011, the Middleton family reportedly covered the cost of Duchess Kate's gown, a custom Alexander McQueen design, which is rumored to be worth $434,000, though it's unclear what they actually paid for it.

Taxpayers will also contribute to the day, in the form of security. Dunne's number above likely doesn't include this cost. While it is unclear exactly how much was spent on security at Prince William and Duchess Kate's 2011 London nuptials, some estimates put it at $32 million, and according to CNN, the "government provided the police with a special £3.6 million ($4.8 million) grant that was used to cover overtime pay for officers."

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In London, mounted police help to monitor the crowd as they walk along the processional route to Buckingham Palace following the wedding of Prince William to Kate Middleton in 2011.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding at Windsor Castle will certainly be much smaller than the royal wedding in 2011, but the cost of protection for the event will still be significant.

Antimonarchists are less than thrilled with this arrangement. "Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are finally engaged. That's good for them, but not so much for the rest of the United Kingdom," wrote Jacob Shamsian in Insider. "The monarchy is an arguably outdated, immoral institution and a lavish wedding is equally wrong. Let's do away with it all."

Morality aside, the 2018 royal wedding is expected to provide a £500 million pound boost to the country's economy in the form of tourism, commemorative merchandise, and essentially "free advertising for Britain."

*This story originally appeared on Townandcountrymag.com
*Minor edits have been made by the Townandcountry.ph editors

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Caroline Hallemann
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