Same-sex wedding questions answered – from who walks down the aisle to speeches

No matter who’s getting married, weddings take a lot of planning. From booking the venue and arranging the catering to ordering the flowers and planning the playlist, getting hitched involves a lot of admin. While most straight couples follow tried and tested traditions to help them plan their big day, for same-sex couples these wedding standards aren’t always so clear cut. Deciding who walks who down the aisle, who gives the speeches and who pays can be tough, so it’s essential you tackle these difficult questions head on if you’re going to plan the wedding of your dreams.

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Who pays for what?

With no traditional bride/groom roles in a same-sex wedding, the first question you’ll need to answer is who’s going to pay for the day? Traditionally, it’s the bride’s family who foots the bill for the wedding. In a same-sex marriage however it’s not immediately obvious who’s responsible for picking up the tab. If you want to keep things fair and easy, why not split the cost between both families? As @MarthaWeddings says:

“Each set of parents can pay the exact same dollar amount for the ceremony, reception, planner, wedding attire, and other expenses.”

Who waits at the altar?

In straight weddings, the groom normally waits at the altar while the bride is walked up the aisle by her father. Same-sex couples can decide for themselves if they want to follow this tradition or not. If you decide you do want to, simply sit down with your other half and talk about who’s going to do what on the day. Alternatively, if you want to put on a united front and start your marriage as you mean to go on, walk each other up the aisle hand in hand and kick off your ceremony in style.

Who walks the bride or groom down the aisle?

If you decide you want to follow the more traditional route, you can choose whoever you want to escort you up the aisle. Pick your dad, your mum, your best friend or anyone else you want to honour with this important role.


You can choose to have speeches by whomever you want on your wedding day. Although traditionally it’s the groom, father of the bride and best man who stand up and give a toast, it’s your day so pick as many or as few of your nearest and dearest as you want to say a few words.

Best men and best women

Again, choosing a best man or best woman simply comes down to personal preference. Many same-sex couples actually opt to forgo the traditional wedding party altogether. However, if you do want someone to stand up with you on your wedding day, simply ask your best friend, regardless of gender.

With no traditions or rules to follow, same-sex weddings can be as original and as unique as the couples getting hitched. Find out more about planning your perfect wedding day by exploring our site.

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