Post # 1
Here’s my question with a little background. I have been pretty set on an elopment, but to avoid upsetting family I am considering a small wedding (like 50 guests):
My family lives in New York state, my SO’s family lives in Massachusetts. We both have small families and a fairly small friend group. Our friends are in New York, and so is my family. My family will be paying for the wedding if we have one. (I should specify, for my culture we consider “family” to be your whole extended family, not just parents and siblings. So my cousins may pay for food while my uncle pays for a venue and my parents buy a dress, etc.)
Here’s the thing. My family is considerably wealthier than SO’s, if we have the wedding near my family then most (if not all) of his family will not have the money to travel and attend. BUT, if we have it near where they live, I will have to plan it long distance, and I would be asking my whole family to travel as well as all of our friends.
How did you decide where to have your wedding? Is anyone in a similar scenario?
Post # 2
do it wherever you want. wherever makes you happiest, you stated yourself that the only reason youre having a wedding is to avoid upset so whoever cant or doesnt make it has no right to be upset.
Post # 3
Oh and congrats and good luck!!!
Post # 4
My family generally live within one to two hours of eachother. I live almost three hours from my ‘hometown’. DH grew up three hours in a different direction, but his extened family lives all over the country, so that really wasn’t a factor. I originally wanted to have the wedding where we lived, because I didn’t want a hometown wedding.
After pricing things up I caved and went for the hometown wedding. Neither of our families have money, but both were gracious enough to help out with the cost. Most of my family came, and the members of his family that where willing to travel came as well. Planning a wedding from three hours away wasn’t that bad, but it helped that I knew the area well.
Post # 5
What about having it somewhere between MA and NY, like Connecticut?
For us, we picked a semi neutral place. it’s closer to my family than his, but its where we met and lived together for the first few years. Almost nobody from our guest list lives in the area where we are getting married, so its a semi destination wedding (2 hours from my family, 7-8 hours from his), but it was a place that had special meaning to both of us vs. my hometown or his hometown.
If I were you, I would probably get married somewhere in between, or set aside money in the budget to help his family with travel expenses.
Post # 6
swonderful: We had a similar dilemma. FI and I live near his family and all his friends, and my family and several friends (though mine are more scattered) all live a 4-hour flight away. We kept considering having it where I’m from, since the weather is nicer year-round, but kept coming back to the fact that my family and friends are much more comfortable traveling than his, and so a wedding where I’m from would be like 80-90% my people, and a wedding where he’s from/where we live would be more like 50/50. He wasn’t opposed to having it where I’m from and loves it out there, but when he mentioned it wouldn’t really feel like his wedding too, I decided against it.
That was our thought process; I realize your situation is a little different since you both live and have friends near your family. So I’d make a couple suggestions. First, ask your FI how he feels about it all, if you haven’t already. Second, is there any way you could provide accommodations for his family? I know it’s kind of a big cost, but if you could rent a big house or something that could be fun and worth it, plus it would probably offset other costs of having it near his family. Good luck! That was one of the more difficult decisions of our wedding, but it gets easier from there!
Post # 7
We’re having it where my fiance and I live. My mom and dad live in NC…my extended family lives in Europe. So I’m going to have a lot of OOT guests. My parents are renting a big house for our extended family to stay in for a week, since it will be cheaper than hotel rooms. That might be an idea for your parents to do. (either for themselves in your FI’s hometown or for your FI’s family in NY) We’re also having the rehearsal at the rental house since it will be big enough. Check out VRBO.com to see houses in your area.
Post # 8
Personally, I would plan it near where I currently am esp since it’s near my larger family and all our friends. MA and NY shouldn’t be that much to travel in between since you can easily drive it. Then if his closest family, parents and sibilings, really cannot afford it, maybe you could pay for their lodging. The remaining travel cost should be negligible after that’s taken care of.
Post # 9
There is really no right or wrong. We planned it in southern ohio where we lived. our families were very spread out and I’m too hands on to plan somewhere i didn’t live. This city is sort of a half way point so we thought it made sense. So far no complaints. I don’t expect a lot of my aunts/uncles to show but I blame that on the fact that I haven’t seen them in years. My parents wanted to pay and my mom told me to invite everyone.
Post # 10
Is there a way to do it half way between families? I know when I was thinking about do the big formal wedding we were thinking what would be half way between each family and sub group of friends. It would have made life somewhat easier and fairer.
Post # 11
- Wedding: May 2015 - The Fairmont, SF
I can empathize – my family and friends live primarily in California, whereas my fiance is from and has always lived in the United Kingdom (where I live now). Luckily he made things easy by saying we could get married in California and have a small party in the UK later. (I’m also planning things long distance and I’ll be honest with you, I’m jealous you have the opportunity to at least call people in the same time zone!)
That being said, I agree with PinkShoes’ advice. Even though it may inconvenience your family and friends, if they’re still likely to come despite the additional travel and costs, then I think it’d be nice to plan your wedding closer to your fiance’s family. Alternatively, I’m not sure how much it would cost to travel between the two states but perhaps with enough warning, your fiance’s family would be able to budget for the cost of travel and lodging.
Post # 12
Thanks to everyone for the responses! I hadn’t considered providing lodging for his family, I think if we do that (which would be doable for us) they could come. Like some of you said, it’s not as if we’re worlds away, so the travel costs aren’t astronomical if we do have to help some people out. I’m kind of oppossed to planning long distance, just because I’m a terrible planner and I’m honestly counting on the ladies in my family to just sort of tell me how things are done for wedding stuff (lol, not the typical bride- all I care about is the dress and the food). Thanks again everyone!
Post # 13
swonderful: Where do you and your guy live?
Post # 14
- Wedding: December 2014 - Norton Country Club
Our families live 9 hours apart (14 for the most extreme on both sides)… we chose to have the wedding close to US. We’re the ones who have to travel back and forth to make the plans and who would have to pay to stay somewhere each time.
Blocking hotel rooms or contributing to hotel stays can make a big difference too. Some of our travelling cousins have decided to go in on vacation homes together which they say is much cheaper than hotels- that could be an option too! If you’re doing a wedding website, maybe you could put ideas there.