10 wedding traditions in Spain

If you are thinking of celebrating your wedding in Spain and you are curious to see what kind of traditions Spaniards carry out when getting married, we show you all of them.

The exchange of arras

Arras are 13 coins that the bride and groom exchange at the wedding ceremony.

It is a tradition from ancient times, where it was customary to give a sum of money or goods to close a deal.

Of the thirteen coins, twelve refer to the months of the year (ingold) and the last one (platinum) is to be shared with the neediest people.

It is usually the children of the family or the children of close friends who carry the arras to the altar.

Not seeing the bride

As in many countries it is a tradition that the groom does not see the bride’s dress until the day of the wedding, it is also a tradition that the bride and groom do not see each other the day before the wedding, as it is said to be bad luck on the special day.

In the typical wedding in Spain, it is the job of the bride’s father to keep her hidden before the ceremony and walk her down the aisle.

Throwing rice at the newly married couple

It is common for weddings in Spain that take place in an indoor venue for guests to wait for the newly married couple at the door to throw rice at them, as a symbol of good luck.

The tradition of throwing rice comes from the East. There, the rice grain is a symbol of prosperity and fertility. When you throw rice at a newlywed couple, you are wishing them good luck in their new journey together and may they have many children!

Throw the bouquet

In Spain it’s a tradition to throw the bouquet to a group of guests and whoever catches it will be the next to get married.

The bride and groom’s walk

During the banquet, the bride and groom walk around the tables giving small gifts to the guests, which are usually figurines as a souvenir of their attendance at the celebration.

Also during this walk they take photos with the guests, and the guests take the opportunity to give them envelopes with money or any other detail for the bride and groom.

Groom’s tie for sale

Normally in this tradition, the groom’s best man buys the groom his tie, which symbolises good fortune and luck.

Cutting the wedding cake with a sword

In Spain it is traditional for the newlyweds to cut the wedding cake with a small sword, symbolising their first act together as married couple. Normally only the first piece of the cake is cut, and then they are the first to eat the cake.

Main table for the bride and groom

Unlike in other countries, at weddings in Spain the bride and groom sit at the head table at the banquet, sometimes together with their closest relatives.

On other occasions, the bride and groom occupy the central table only, followed by two adjoining tables with the bride and groom’s closest relatives, who are the parents, grandparents in some cases, and siblings.

Something new, something old, something borrowed and something blue.

As the title suggests, this is usually done at weddings as it is a symbol of good luck. Normally it is the bride who should wear these things.

Offer a dozen eggs to Santa Clara

If your wedding is going to be a church wedding, this is a Spanish custom so that on your wedding day it won’t rain.

To do this, you have to go to a convent of the Clarisas nuns and bring a dozen eggs as an offering.