Love & Wisdom

All You Need is Love, And Lots of Cash

How much are Washington residents willing to spend on engagement rings?

By Rob Smith February 14, 2024


This article originally appeared in the March/April 2024 issue of Seattle magazine.

If you’re in love and anything like the “average” Washington resident, it’s going to cost you. 

Washington residents spend on average almost $8,300 on engagement rings, and that’s hardly the most expensive in the United States. Online diamond store Rare Carat’s survey found that New York residents spent the most (more than $11,000), while residents in South Dakota are the most budget-conscious, at around $5,000.

It’s been more than two decades since I purchased an engagement ring. Let’s just say I was more frugal than most. A record $6.4 billion is projected to be spent on rings across the U.S. today, on Valentine’s Day. Interestingly, the most popular shape by far is a round diamond.

Even though love is apparently costly, we’re still a very romantic state. surveyed 3,000 Americans and found that Washington residents take, on average, four months before saying “I love you” to their partner. No fewer than 85% of state residents report that they’re happy to say those three magic words before their partner does, tied with that well-known romance capital, Alabama, for the highest percentage in the nation.

When you do utter those magic words, just have your checkbook ready.

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