Post # 1
So our destination wedding is next year April in Cuba. All of our friends we have asked to be in our bridal party are making it. It seems we have now started a trend and a few of fiances friends who are engaged are also planning to have destination wedding one wants one next October (same year as ours) another wants 2014 as well as one on my friends and my best friends mother wants 2014 also. How are we possibly going to be able to attend all these peoples destination weddings? I will feel bad that they all came out to ours but there is no way I can attend more than one destination wedding in a year. Since our wedding is the first of this type its seems thats why everyone is able to come. I know we will definetly not be able to attend the destination in October 2013 as I will have used up all my vacation time for my own wedding. I plan on getting an house and having a baby in the next few years. Should I feel bad about this? Would you?
Post # 3
@sweetchiquita12: I would set the expectation early that you will not be able to make it. If they’re close friends then I don’t think it would be too presumptuous to assume that you’re invited. If I were planning on having a Destination Wedding I would probably send out feelers early on to see if people were coming or not… long before I’d send out Save-The-Date Cards or invitations.
I think most people understand that a lot of guests invited won’t be able to make it. I wouldn’t go to a Destination Wedding unless it was my immediate family or best friend.
You’re not made of money or vacation time.
Post # 4
I’m of the mindset that you can only do what you can do, and every event is different. We wouldn’t want to spend our vacation time year after year only going to weddings in locations we had no say over. And I don’t feel badly about that!
Post # 5
Personally I wouldn’t feel bad if I travelled for someone’s wedding and they were not able to travel for mine, although I’d like a personal note or call and not just an RSVP card coming back to me. (and this exact scenario happened for our wedding, as our friends were not able to travel from Wales to attend but we’d been able to go to Wales for theirs— no harm, no foul in our book)
That said, I am not “everyone” and as you’ll see a thousand times over on this board, there is very much a tit-for-tat thing out here in wedding world. You will encounter people who come to your Destination Wedding and get mad when you don’t come to theirs. Personally I don’t think people who keep score like that are worth having as friends anyway, but that’s a story for another day.
Just keep in mind that when you plan a wedding where it’s likely that your guests will need to spend a lot of money and time to attend, some may expect that you do the same in return. You’ll probably get a number of folks who say “I’d only go to a Destination Wedding if it were close family” and that’s code for “I would spare no expense or effort for those closest to my heart, but there are others who are not as pivotal in my life and I wouldn’t spend on them.” When someone says “I value our relationship enough to spend airfare and vacation time to celebrate your wedding” then does not hear the same sentiment in return, it can be very hurtful. Which does not mean “don’t have a DW” but rather, be prepared for a little more drama than you might have if you held your wedding locally.
Post # 6
@sweetchiquita12: You feel how you feel, honestly I don’t understad the questions, let alone polls, on Wedding Bee about how one should feel.
Now if you are asking about how to act–that’s something different.
I might feel badly about not being able to see a freind get married, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to go into debt for the event or use all of my vacation time for it.
It seems to me that this situation is the inevitable result of making Destination Weddings a big extravaganza. I thought that, originally they were a modest thing, were attended by parents and maybe a sibling or an auntie or two who want to have a fun beach vacation. In other words, attending are only a couple of people who will make the sacrifice no matter what and then a couple (the aunties) who have excess time and money. Make no mistake, it is a sacrifice.
Now that entire parties of attendants are planned in these large events it is not possible for everyone to attend all events.
Post # 7
@fishbone: wow. those are incredibly wise words. Nicely summed up!
Post # 8
I’m in a very similar situation.. I’m getting married in Mexico next April and a family member (who will be attending my wedding) just announced she will be having a Destination Wedding in June. There’s just no way we can make it work when we will be out of vacation time, putting most of our money towards a house, etc. I don’t feel bad because that’s just the risk you run when having a Destination Wedding. There are plenty of people who won’t be attending ours for their own reasons and we understand that, so I expect her to understand why we can’t go.
Post # 9
@fishbone: Your words are very wise! Thanks you for that I appreciate the honest reponse and its gives me some things to think about.
@Britt_RN: Wow that is super close to your wedding! Did you already tell her you cant go? if so what was the reaction?
Post # 10
Agree with fishbone – if you can’t, you can’t, but be sure to express to the couple that you wish you could and that you wish them well. (and send them a nice gift to go with it!) For the one in 2013, that’s easy – tell her you’ve unfortunately used up all your vacation time. i’m sure you’ve booked flights, etc. so at this point it’s out of your hands. the other ones, i’d hold off on for now, since half of them might change their minds once they start pricing things or their parents catch wind of it.
i would maybe start talking to Fiance about how you would prioritize them though in case it does become an issue – is there one clear frontrunner you can say you committed all your vacation time to? does time of year matter? ie. it’s hard to get time off in april so that wedding’s out? if you get asked about it now, i’d stick to “we’d love to be there, but it’s still a bit far out, so we can’t commit for sure” and then maybe throw out one or two concerns – eg. “depends on if we’ve bought a house and how much it’s cost us”. that way you’re a “maybe” vs a definite yes on their count when they poll – if they have enough of those, some of them might move it closer to home.
Post # 11
@sweetchiquita12: Yeah, she knows and she’s been understanding. I’ve gotten grief from another family member, but what can ya do.
Post # 12
@starbuckslover: Thanks for the great advice!! More great points for me to consider
@Britt_RN: True..I guess you cant please everyone. At least the person whose wedding it is has been understanding and thats really all that matters
Post # 13
- Wedding: July 2012 - Baltimore Museum of Industry
OP- don’t beat yourself up over this. Pick the wedding of the person that you’re closest to, then send lovely letters and a heart-felt gift to the rest. Like throughthebarricades said-You’re not made of money or vacation time.
Post # 14
I would feel bad, but it is what it is. I would send a more expensive gift that I otherwise would.
Post # 15
I think anyone throwing a Destination Wedding has to know that some people that you would like to be there just aren’t going to be able to come. One of my closest cousins can’t come to mine and it sucks, but she’s throwing her own wedding a month later, will have a new baby, and so of course money is tight. But that’s how the cookie crumbles.
I would go out of your way to apologise for not being able to make it. Explain to them that throwing a wedding was expensive, that you are out of vacation time because of it, and you are trying to buy a house and planning for a baby in the near future. If they’re really your friends they are going to understand that.
Post # 16
Are you attending as a bridesmaid or a guest?
I feel that most people having a Destination Wedding should expect most guests to not be able to attend. And that they should be understanding if a proposed bridal party member is not able to attend. It may be disappointing, but I don’t think good friends will hold it against you.
Just be up front about it. Let them know that you’d love to be there, but since YOU just got married, you simply don’t have the funds for it. Just because they had the funds to attend your Destination Wedding, doesn’t mean you HAVE to play the reciprication game.
I think if they are true friends, they will understand.