Post # 1
So my dad is paying entirely for our wedding and has been awesome and so gracious. My fiancées dad really wants to do the rehearsal dinner and is excited about it. We suggested a nice place near the venue, but knew it was on the expensive side. His dad/stepmom have been there and know the costs and were very excited about the place. In the past when they have paid for a meal his stepmom will say at the behinning “we will pay for your entrees and you pay for all your drinks yourself.” This is fine, but not what fiancée or I want for our rehearsal dinner. I know my dad will chime in and offer to pay for everything. There is quite a different SES between the two. I am anxious for this to happen, but I don’t want to make anyone else feel uncomfortable. I would be happy eating at McDonalds if it ensured everyone was at ease. Any advice?
Post # 2
theshannondee: If they are hosting, they make the decisions. Normally the groom’s parents would consult with the two of you, however. I would hope they don’t expect their guests to pay for their drinks.
A couple of suggestions. You could suggest that the guests be provided with wine, beer and maybe one signature drink to limit the bar bill. No one really needs to drink heavily the night before the wedding.
Or, the two of you could offer to pick up the bar tab.
Post # 3
theshannondee: I would talk to your in laws about what you want for the rehearsal dinner. Let them know how much you think it will be per person including the meal and a drink or two (or whatever you feel is appropriate) and check in to see if they are comfortable with that. If they suggest that guests pay for their own drinks and you’re not comfortable with that, then ask what they are comfortable paying per person and find someplace that fits that budget.
Post # 4
Suggest to your bridal party that you head to a bar(s) afterward.
My daughter is having an alcohol-free rehearsal dinner. The groom’s parents are hosting. They do not drink alcohol, for religious reasons. I doubt very much that any of the guests would not be courteous enough to respect this and ask that alcohol be served to them, anyway. They can survive a meal and a few hours without alcohol.
Post # 5
theshannondee: Are they against paying for drinks for moral reasons (ie: they personally don’t drink alcohol)? If so, that is understandable. However, if that were the case…for me personally, I would just pay for the rehearsal dinner entirely myself to ensure that it was how I felt my guests should be hosted. That being said, if it is for moral reasons, is it possible to have all drinks entered on a seperate tab that you and your FI could pay for? I have a friend whose ILs do not drink for religious reasons, and while they were not opposed to their kids having alcohol at their weddings, they personally would not pay for it. It was a non issue as the parents covered the whole wedding, and the bride/groom foot the bill for alcohol since having it was important to them.
Post # 6
theshannondee: I would speak with your future in-laws about how they want to handle the rehearsal dinner. Do they cover just dinner? Dinner and one paid drink? Everything? To be honest, alcohol can really add up and if they are on a budget I get not wanting to pay for people to drink expensive drinks. My in-laws paid for the meal portion of ours, but they are not as well off as my parents. My mom used part of the money we got back from our venue (they did everything expecting 80 people when we actually had 60 guests, so they had to refund us money) to host one drink on her. The bar was still open and guests could continue to drink, they just had to pay for their additional drinks. Nobody was offended and everyone had a good time.
Post # 7
I’m confused. You said “In the past when they have paid for a meal his stepmom will say at the behinning “we will pay for your entrees and you pay for all your drinks yourself.” This is fine, but not what fiancée or I want for our rehearsal dinner.”
What makes you think that they will have this same outlook towards your rehearsal dinner? Have they actually said that? If not, then I think you are worrying for nothing. Also, if it is for financial reasons, then maybe you should let them pick a less expensive restaurant.
It would be very awkward if your dad pitched in for the rehearsal dinner. If your FI’s family is hosting the rehearal dinner, let them host it.
Post # 8
julies1949: MadameX: PABride: starfish0116: KatiePi: Bexx: Thanks all for the great responses. They themselves drink and have no problem with drinking. I can’t quite say why they do this (buy meals and not drinks). I certainly do not expect them to shell out big bucks, I just don’t want this awkward situation to happen. I suppose you are all right and a conversation needs to be had. I just hate discussing money with family or making anyone feel insecure about it. I will get the fiancee on it as that’s probably easier. Then we can have a plan and either help pay or change venue if needed.
Post # 9
There are a few options here. But either way a discussion should be had with your future inlaws. Your FI should be a big part of this conversation since it’s his dad/stepmom.
Why don’t you ask the host/server before you sit down to make sure they separate the food vs the bar bills? Or call ahead and let them know your reservation time and that it’s a rehearsal dinner so there should be two bills. And have you and your FI pay the bar tab at the end of the night. Then it’s not awkward at the table, discuss it beforehand with the inlaws.
OR, plan it at a different restaurant that is a bit less expensive or at someone’s house and have it more casual so you can supply alcohol if you want to?