Post # 1
My wedding is going to be in the afternoon… 1:00 with a lunchtime reception from 2-4 or 5.
So obviously we’ll be having dinner later that night… so we could either
a) do dinner with just the two of us, everyone else on their own
b) have dinner with just our immediate family and bridal party, but everyone pay for themselves,
or c) invite all the guests to a specific dinner location, but everyone pay for themselves.
I’ve played with the budget a lot and we simply don’t have the budget to pay for dinner for everyone as well… and if we do any kind of rehearsal dinner for our family & bridal party the night before, I don’t think we can afford dinner again on the wedding day either. And if we do invite everyone, how do we word it to make it clear that it’d be paying for yourself without sounding bad?
I’d love the opportunity to hang out with our guests more, especially since most of them will be traveling, so I’d LIKE to do option C, but is it tacky to invite people to a wedding-related meal without paying.. even if there’s absolutely no obligation for them to come? Most people will be coming from out of town so I think it’d also be nice to have a pre-planned option for them rather than having to find dinner on their own…
Argh! Everything just makes me feel so guilty asking people to travel and spend all this money just to come..
Post # 3
I would not plan anything wedding related that I couldn’t pay for.
I had a brunch wedding/ reception that ended around 4, and my husband and I went straight to the hotel and had dinner together. It was nice to get away from everyone and enjoy finally being married.
I think my parents had a little after party at their house for guests who wanted to keep the party going, but we didn’t attend.
Post # 4
@batbrain: That’s a tough one. You obviously want to hang out with guests that have gathered just for your big day. You already fed them one meal that day, so I don’t think you’re under and obgligation for a second paid meal. I would advertise the place you’re eating to everyone, and let them choose whether to go or not.
Post # 5
I would suggest you tell people youre going to “x” restaurant later on in the evening to grab a bite to eat and some drinks and if they’d like to join you’d love to have them come! I would try to angle it as impromptu as possible and make it not seem like a wedding event…if you make it like you are putting together the dinner as an event people will probably think its part of the whole wedding still and you’re paying.
Post # 6
As long as people know in advance and you are funding one meal, then I see no reason not to invite them, making it clear that sadly you can’t afford to fund the evening meal as well.
I think people on here worry to much about what you should and shouldn’t do. You know your friends, you know how they’re likely to react and if you want more time to see them in the evenings, then there should be no problem with inviting them.
We’re inviting ourclose friends who live a long way from us to join us for lunch the day after the wedding so we get more time to see them. We are not funding any of this, we have just told them where we will be and when and made it clear that there is no obligation to come but we would love it if they did.
Post # 7
Just because you can’t afford a reception/ dinner for all guests does NOT mean that you can’t have one. I would gladly pay for my own meal. All of this etiquette BS is sometimes just too much. If they find it rude or disrespectful… whatever, they don’t have to come. But for people who really care for you guys and want to be there to celebrate, paying for my own meal is well worth it.
Post # 8
I think it depends how you go about it. If I were a guest at your wedding, and you had the ceremony and a reception and then said to me (word of mouth) that a bunch of you were going to Such-and-such Restaurant for dinner, I would gladly go and have no problem paying for my own dinner. As long as you keep it casual, I think it is fine.
Post # 9
@batbrain: I don’t see a single thing wrong with saying you’re going to eat at a particular place if anyone wants to meet up. I mean, I wouldn’t put it on the invitation, but maybe just word of mouth or possibly the website.
I just went to a very small early morning wedding. The “reception” was lunch paid for by the bride and groom. Obviously we were all still in town & planning to eat dinner, so the bride told us where they planned to go. The plan was always for us to pay our own way and I was perfectly fine with it. I mean, I was there to hang out with them and the “wedding” was over.
Post # 10
@batbrain: is there any way that a family member can host something later that night? maybe a few cocktails and snacks.
the 2 of you can go for an intimate dinner together and then join everyone later in the evening for casual mingling.
Post # 11
A friend of mine eloped and then had us meet her at a low key diner for hotdogs and chocolate cake. Everyone knew because of the location that we would pay for ourselves. The invites simply said, “We’re stopping at Portillos on the way home! Join us if you can!”
Post # 12
@Artificial-Sweetener: But she is having a reception. It’s just at lunchtime instead of the usual dinner hour.
It’s all in how you word it, but I think you two should just have an intimate dinner
Post # 13
It could be a bit awkward. I say you and your new husband should spend dinner aone together, lieseruely, no pressure, just the two of you. 🙂 Sounds simple and sweet to me
Post # 14
@ohmybears48: OMG! Portillos! *drooling*
Post # 15
OP: If I’m understanding this correctly, you are having a lunch wedding with a reception that will end around dinner time, you would be providing lunch, and now you’re asking if you need to provide dinner? Is that right?
If so: I think if you’re having a lunch wedding, you’re providing lunch – the end. If people would like to spend time with you AFTER the wedding, and you would like them to join you, then I don’t see any reason why they can’t pay for their own meals. While my mother had a catered brunch the next morning after her wedding, I don’t think that it would’ve been in poor taste at all had she arranged a space for brunch and people purchased their own brunch.