While we like to think marriage is all about love, money has always played an important role in the practice. Throughout history, marriages were often strategic alliances aimed at consolidating power, securing wealth, and ensuring financial stability for families. While modern-day marriages prioritize love and companionship, the custom of presenting money to the newlyweds as a symbol of good fortune and a head start in their new life persists in many cultures, giving rise to the tradition known as the money dance.
The money dance, also known as the dollar dance, money spray, or apron dance, is a cultural tradition where guests offer the newlyweds money by pinning it to the bride or spraying it on the couple as they dance. There’s no definite origin of this tradition, but it appears in cultures all across the globe. Variations of this tradition can be found at weddings in Poland, Greece, Nigeria, Philippines, Samoa, Fiji, Tonga, Portugal, Latin America, Mexico, Eastern Europe, Canada, and the United States.
The exact meaning of the money dance varies slightly between cultures. For example, in Nigeria, money spraying symbolizes showering the newlyweds with happiness and good fortune and is a display of guests’ affection for the couple. In the Philippines, money is pinned onto the couple as a means of helping a couple financially as they start a new life together.
While the money dance retains stronger associations with certain cultures, the escalating costs of weddings have led to more couples embracing financial contributions from their guests and family members. Whether through the money dances itself, the gifting of red envelopes, establishing honeymoon funds, or permitting parents to cover the event expenses, money continues to assume a crucial role in bestowing newlyweds with blessings of prosperity and granting them a solid financial foundation as they begin their married life.
If you’re looking for a photographer or videographer for your wedding, contact AGI Studio today! Our team of talented, award-winning photographers and videographers would love to capture your big day, money dance included.