Puerto Rican Wedding Traditions You Should Know About

Puerto Rican Wedding Traditions

If there’s one unique thing that you should learn about from other nations’ cultures, it’s their wedding traditions. In Puerto Rico, wedding traditions are just as unique and special! Below, we review some of the bridal customs in this territory.

The Groom’s Gift — A Plate of Coins

If the wedding is to be held in a church, you can expect to see a priest blessing a plate of coins. Specifically, there will be 13 arras, which are basically gold coins. While the number 13 is unlucky in most cultures, these 13 coins are by no means unlucky! In fact, the arras represent Jesus Christ and his 12 disciples, which makes it a religious blessing.


This plate of coins would later be given to the groom, who would then gift it to the bride. In terms of the wedding ceremony, this plate would become a symbol for the prosperity and good luck that would come the couple’s way.

Puerto Rican Wedding Traditions

A Unique Drink — Cafe con Leche

Puerto Rican wedding ceremony traditions would not be complete without good food, music, and festive dancing. During the wedding reception, the newly married couple will drink cafe con leche — coffee with milk — from coconut cups. You can expect the guests to be enjoying the food and dancing during the ceremony too!

Dressed-up Doll — A Bridal Imitation

Have you ever seen Puerto Rican bridal dolls? As its name suggests, these dolls resemble the bride. This is especially true when it comes to the similarity between the dress of the doll and the bride. You can catch a glimpse of this doll during the wedding reception, sitting right in the middle of the main table.


While the dress of this doll is identical to the one on the bride, the doll itself might not be. It’s not uncommon to see a Barbie doll being used as the bridal doll although some would also opt for bigger-sized dolls. The newlywed couple would pin corsages onto their guests during the wedding reception, and in return, they will attach some money to this bridal doll. That’s certainly quite a flashy doll, isn’t it?

Cojin & Lasso — A Symbol of Support & Unity

One unique wedding tradition in Puerto Rico is the lasso ceremony. Two cojins are part of the must-have items here along with a lasso. These cojins are small pillows which would be held by both the groom and the bride. Why little cushions? They actually represent the support that the bride and groom should provide each other throughout their marriage — just like any cushion does!


Upon officiation, the newlywed couple will kneel on these cojins, and a lasso would be placed upon their shoulders. It’s not a literal lasso, however. The lasso would be a rope shaped in an infinity sign, with its own significant meaning. It represents the unity between these two individuals — the symbolism of two individuals becoming one.

Bond with Nature — Coqui & Seashell Decorations

Puerto Ricans love nature a lot! During the wedding ceremony, you will quite certainly hear the sounds of coqui or other nature-based sounds playing in the background. Coquis are symbolic to Puerto Rico itself, with this little drog’s timid calls you can hear throughout the island in the evening. These sounds could be pre-recorded for the wedding tradition, or you might just hear it live from the presence of coqui around you.


If you look around you during the wedding ceremony, you will see strings of seashells and candles being used as decoration items at the main table. Guests would also be wearing seashell jewellery to the big day, and don’t be surprised to see seashells decorating the couple’s wedding cake either! Indeed, these shells are part of the must-have decoration items in Puerto Rican weddings!


So, there you have it! Are you aware of other unique wedding traditions in Puerto Rico that are not stated in this article? Feel free to share it with us in the comments section, or share this article with your friends to let them know about these unique customs.