Post # 1
FI was on the phone with FMIL the other day and she mentioned that she read online that one of the responsibilities of the groom’s family is that they pay for the rehersal, so they wanted to do that. I find this incredibly generous, considering as how they already contributed to our overall wedding budget (about 8% of it) – we were just planning on using whatever money we had leftover for a pizza party and calling it a day. Now that we have actual money for it, though, I’d like to do something more representative of us (and logistically a pizza party won’t work too well anymore anyway).
So, again, I appreciate that the ILs are offering to cover it. However, when FI asked for a budget, she told him to “just have Ashley plan it and give us a bill”. Um…which, is nice and all, but that gives me zero guidlines. And I have no idea if it’s okay to assume we’re inviting OOT guests (which is all his family), or just BP and dates – or heck, just BP. Obviously there is a HUGE range of $$ at play, too – besides the guest list size (which could range from 25 to 80!), we could do anything from cold cuts in a park to a three course plated dinner at a steakhouse, and anywhere in between.
FI said it’s okay if I email his mom asking about it (he’s not super close with them and they aren’t local), but I’m not sure how to ask “hey, how much money can we spend?” without sounding rude. So – advice?
Post # 3
Our strategy throughout planning has been to work up sample budgets in a variety of price ranges, send them to our parents, and have them “give us their thoughts.” It’s considerably easier than having them guess what wedding items are worth.
Post # 4
“Hi Sally! Thanks again for offering to cover the rehearsal dinner; it’s so generous of you! Before I dive into planning this, I wanted to know what you are comfortable contributing. I want to make sure our budgets line up so there are no surprises for any of us at the end! Thank you again, and please let me know if you have any ideas or suggestions for the night! Love, StLAshley”
Or something along those lines..
Post # 5
- Wedding: April 2014 - Italian Villa
I would divert this one back to your fiance, even though he isn’t too close with them. He can just call them up (or shoot them an email, etc) and say, “Hey, can you give us a ballpark on a budget for the rehearsal dinner?” or if he doesn’t want to ask flat out, “Hey, what kind of thing were you thinking for the rehearsal dinner? Out at a restaurant, or in someone’s home?”
Since it is his family, I think it is better for him to approach them about money.
Post # 6
PAYING for the rehearsal dinner is not the only tradition. It is also tradition that the groom’s parents HOST the dinner. That means they do the planning.
The first thing I would do is to clarify if they would like to do that, if they want you to work with them, or if they want you to take over.
If they do want you to do the planning in its’ entirety, I would simply ask them for a budget.
Post # 7
Were doing ours at a local sit down resturant. were inviting about 25 people, and our only requirement is that they order off the 9.99$ menu or less ( and this place has over 25 different options for this price). With included taxes it will be about 600$ i believe. My grandma is footing the bill for us. Perhaphs ask your ILs what they are wanting to spend per person, and if they picture it being at home or a resturant.
Post # 8
@julies1949: They definitely want me to plan it. They aren’t familar with St. Louis at all (they’ve only visited FI three times in the five years he’s lived here) – they just want to foot the bill. Which is fine, I like planning and hate paying 😉
@abbie017: Thanks for the suggestion! That’s a good jumping off point for me. It’s one of those things that shouldn’t be difficult, but since I’m trying to create a relationship (and preserve what relationship I have!), I want to be sure it’s not coming off as too…anything.
@gingerkitten: That was definitely my first choice, and apparently he tried, but his mom was just super vague. He threw out a few ideas – renting a park pavilion, a resturant, having something catered at my work (a Zoo), and she just said “those sound great! Have Ashley pick something”. I’m just worried they don’t understand how much it could cost – heck, when they gave us money for the wedding budget initially (about 2.5k) they said “this should cover the reception, right?”. I think they better understand the costs now, though!
@jdhall89: That is an EXCELLENT idea. I haven’t had to deal with approval or anything like that before (my parents gave us money, made a few small requests, and are generally leaving us to our own devices), but since this is a more delicate situation that would be a great way to handle things! I think I’ll start some researching now.
Post # 9
do they not want to host it themselves? typically the grooms family hosts the RD.
but why don’t you price out a few things and ask FMIL what she thinks in reasonable.
Post # 10
@StL.Ashley: I would do all of the research necessary for the type of rehearsal dinner that you would like to have, and submit the options and corresponding budget numbers to your future in-laws for their reveiw and consideration.
I would make option 1 (or A) the option with the least number of guests (i.e. the least costly option) and work your way up to the final option and price to include all of the OOT family or guests (i.e. the most expensive option), if you think that is reasonable.
I would not express a preference or a recommendation. I would keep it very matter-of-fact and businesslike, with phrases such as, ” … and, if you would prefer also to include all of the out-of-town family, for a total of XXX guests, then this would be the cost associated with doing that.”
I would end your communication by asking which option they would prefer and noting that you will be happy to move forward with the planning once you hear back from them with further direction.