The Today Show's Jeff Rossen went undercover for a "Rossen Reports" segment investigating whether or not vendors' long-rumored "wedding markup" is real or just a myth. Accompanied by a hidden camera, Rossen told a venue, a photographer, and a DJ that he was planning a birthday party. Meanwhile, producer Lindsey Bomnin, would contact the same venue, photographer, and DJ, and tell them she was planning a wedding, keeping the date and the number of guests the same.

The venue gave Rossen and Bomnin the same price. The photographer quoted a price just $50 higher to Bomnin for the wedding than the one he offered to Rossen for a birthday party. But the price discrepancy for the DJ was substantial: birthday party $1,650 versus wedding $2,496.50. The DJ company later explained that the difference in price was due to the nature of the events—weddings require more attention to detail and the DJs have to be specially trained.


Rossen recommended that people planning weddings try the same experiment to see what kind of price differences they encounter. Meanwhile, anyone throwing a birthday party with a fancy cocktail hour and DJ, please feel free to invite me, because clearly you know how to party.