Cost of Wedding Band vs DJ: the Difference

Today, we’re going to be looking at the differences in cost of wedding band vs DJ

What Is A Wedding Band?

The wedding band can set the tone for the entire day. Every band will have its own unique style and way of performing, so it’s definitely best to do your research and read up on any reviews. Although you may think it’s “just the music”, the music can have a huge impact on the wedding. From the gathering of your guests at the ceremony to the last song of the evening – the band can cover it all!

What Is A Wedding DJ?

A wedding DJ is slightly different from a wedding band. While a band usually has a unique way of making music and will generally stick to a theme throughout their performance, DJs are very different. DJs can take requests and they only typically arrive for the reception of the wedding – when the dancing begins! They have a huge setlist and can play a wide selection of music of your choice.

How Much Does A Wedding Band Cost?

The cost of a wedding band will vary massively depending on where you live, the popularity of the band, the time of your wedding, and the size of the band. However, the average cost of a wedding band is just under $4,000 – yes, they’re definitely not cheap! This is because they are usually there throughout the day, as well as the evening. And there’s usually a larger amount of people that need to be paid for their work.

How Much Does A Wedding DJ Cost?

On the other side of the spectrum, a wedding DJ will set you back around just over $1000, on average. But again, this will all depend on where you live and how well-known the DJ is. DJs tend to be cheaper because they’re only there for the evening and it requires considerably less effort than the work of a band.

Pros And Cons Of DJ Vs Band

There are pros and cons of both a DJ and a wedding band. Let’s compare notes!


  • Pro: Price is the biggest bonus when it comes to a DJ. The amount of money you’ll save using a DJ in comparison to a band will be huge and will help towards other parts of the wedding
  • Con: DJs are very much about getting up and having a dance. If you don’t think many of your guests are suited to this, it may not be the best idea
  • Pro: Variety. DJs can play pretty much any song you’d like at your wedding. And they can also take requests from guests on the night, so there will likely be music suitable for all ages
  • Con: Personality. Bands tend to have huge personalities and their own unique style, which is unusual for a DJ to bring.


  • Pro: Themes. If you’re having a themed wedding, bands are perfect. They can almost transport you to your theme of choice and make sure the tone matches the mood of your theme
  • Con: Space. If your venue is already tight on space, you may struggle to have a band at your wedding. There will be a lot of people, with a lot of equipment!
  • Pro: Musicians know how to work a crowd and to get your guests going. After all, getting the guests excited and happy is their job
  • Con: Money. They are considerably more expensive than a wedding DJ. While we may understand the reasoning behind it, financial issues are the main reason why couples opt for a DJ, rather than a band

If you’ve decided on a band for your wedding, be sure to check out this list of questions from the Wedding Planner LA to ensure you’re asking all the right questions, at the right time.


I hope this article has helped with the differences between the cost of a wedding band vs DJ. Although the differences between the two are huge, the price does reflect that, and rightly so. No matter which music you choose to have at your wedding, you and your guests will have the most incredible time. Music brings everyone together – no matter which form it’s in.

Did you have a band or a DJ at your wedding? I would love to hear your experiences, so please feel free to let me know in the comments below. Sharing is caring!


What Percentage of Wedding Budget Should be DJ?

The Knot suggest that just 7% of your budget should be used for your wedding music - whether that be a DJ or a wedding band. This may seem like a very low percentage, but in comparison to some of the other costs of your wedding, a DJ seems relatively cheap in comparison!

How Much Should a DJ Charge For 4 Hours?

The average cost a DJ should charge for 4 hours (the average time of a reception) can be anywhere between $600-$1200. Be sure to get quotes from several DJs before you make a decision, to ensure you're getting the most for your money.

Is a DJ Cheaper Than a Band For a Wedding?

Yes! If you're on a tight budget, you should definitely opt for a DJ, rather than a wedding band. They are a fraction of the price - and just as fun! Bands are so much more expensive because of the amount of people in a band, and the length of time they spend at your wedding. 

Is it Tacky to Have a DJ For a Wedding?

Absolutely not! I had a DJ for my own wedding, and I loved every minute of it. While some DJs may be cheesy and cliché, others are certainly not. Every DJ is different and it's important to find one that suits you. I, personally, love DJs at weddings, and feel they cater to everyone's music tastes, rather than just to a particular genre of music. What's your thoughts on this? Please feel free let me know in the comments below.

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