Post # 1
I’m getting married next year and am trying to figure out our sleeping arrangements for out of town guests. Our venue is a beautiful orchard on 350 acres, however, this means its also in the middle of nowhere with few hotel options. There are hotels within 15 minutes, however, they are not nice and I would much rather my guests be staying in a hotel they would be comfortable in. If they want to book the crappier, but closer ones then that’s up to them but I’d feel rude suggesting a hotel I wouldnt stay at myself. There is a newer hilton hotel that is a half hour away but is that too far? I would hire a shuttle but in my area they are pretty expensive and my budget doesnt allow it. Our ceremony is at the same location as the reception so that would save them some driving. So basically what I’m asking is it even worth it to block rooms for a hotel a half hour away for guests or is that too far? We’re from the country and have to drive a half hour to get to pretty much anything so the drive wouldnt bother us, however, I know city people arent used to that like we are. Thanks!
EDIT: I should also note that guests are aloud to camp on the property so that’s an option, though I’m not sure how many people are going to want to camp in the middle of October in their dress clothes lol. I’m going to guess this is going to be the option for those of our guests that have a little bit too much fun and cant make it out the door haha
Post # 2
that’s pretty far if you aren’t providing a shuttle. every wedding I’ve been to that has a room block includes a shuttle – since that isn’t an option for you I would just provide your guests with a list of nearby hotels and let them figure out what they want to do.
Post # 3
We have hotel block but no shuttle. Our hotel is closer-only a mile from the reception location, (but I am guessing that most will drive since our ceremony is further).
I would not have a problem driving 30 min to the hotel. I am from the country too though. You know your guests best. Do you get a discount for the guest with the hotel block? If so, I’d do the block. If not (and you aren’t worried about the hotel being full) then maybe just list different hotel options.
Post # 4
How much is the shuttle? We found a great price on one for 100$/hr for a 24 passenger mini bus. Our hotel block will only be 5m away from the venue so we will just run rolling pick ups and drop offs.
TBH I dont think 30m is *that* far, but people would likely leave early and not drink/party as much because of the drive. However, I’d say that with a 15m drive as well. I’d really see if you could swing a shuttle by cutting something else.
Post # 5
Where I live, everything is half hour with traffic included. Out in the sticks, I think half hour is a pretty far drive for people not used to driving that distance. I would probably either find a way to offer a shuttle or give them that hotel information. Maybe enough people will pick the crappy one where you don’t have to have a block at the further one.
Post # 6
We booked a hotel 25 minutes away and were not able to provide a shuttle. It was too far out of budget. People didn’t complain, many people stayed ’til the end of the night. Most people carpooled anyway to get out to the venue. It was either that or book the hotel closer that was $300 a night… we figured people wouldn’t mind a little driving if it saved them a few hundred bucks.
Post # 7
If you’re serving booze and expecting people to stay all night and dance and party, you need to make it easy for them to get back and forth safely. Yeah I know, they’re all adults, they should be responsible for themselves, but isn’t that the opposite of having them stay all night partying?
Rent a shuttle. Check the local bus rentals/bus charter companies because you may be able to get a school bus for a lot less than a shuttle bus. Get some Uber discount codes (after verifying there is actual Uber service coverage in the area). Cut back on the flowers (which are really for you) and use the money you save to pay for a shuttle (which is for your guests). Ask the venue how other couples have solved this problem.
Now, if you’re doing a dry wedding or a lunch wedding and not expecting people to drink more than a beer or two, half an hour’s drive is fine, but you have to be realistic about how much drinking people will be doing.
Post # 8
Does the hotel have a shuttle that you can use? We had one of our room blocks at the Hilton as well, and they have shuttles there. The first 5 miles were free, but anything over that, it was $10 per person R/T. That hotel was about 20 minutes away from our venue. It wasn’t that expensive. Ideally, you provide a hotel shuttle for your guests, but you’re not violating any etiquette rules if you don’t. It just would be nice if you can.
Post # 9
I’m surprised how many people are saying you need a shuttle. I’ve never been to a wedding where a shuttle was provided. Maybe that’s a regional thing though. Out of curiousity, I just now looked at how much a shuttle would cost me. I couldn’t really find one even. Just limos or large charter busses. (I am in a smaller city though)
Post # 10
Thirty minutes away is fine. How many guests are you having? You should at least provide transportation for you immediate family.
Post # 11
30 minutes is fine. Your guest should all be adult enough to know how to book a hotel and have a DD if they are drinking.
Shuttles would have to make several trips to get all your guest there, not to mention the 30 minutes drive each way…. way too long and too much cost.
Post # 12
Considering what you’ve mentioned about the venue location, I don’t think 30 minutes is too far. I disagree with some of the other posters about needing to provide transportation for guests – you don’t. It’s awesome to do, but not an obligation or something that guests always expect.
Post # 13
I think the idea of providing transportation stems from the fact that the OP chose a venue in the middle of nowhere. It edges into the territory of putting your vision above your guests (similarly if someone spends 10k on flowers but has a bbq buffet and cash bar). Not technically wrong, but just not very polite.
Keep in mind, that any guests that DO drink and drive, you, your venue and your bartenders could be liable. YES adults should behave like adults – which is why I’d never advocate putting dress code and the like on an invite “they should know” – but when there is actual liability and legal consequences at hand, I think it makes it a bit more important.
If there are cabs readily available, or public transport I would absolutely change my view. But it doesnt sound like there is.
eta – I actually looked at venues that said if it was a host bar then shuttles were manditory, because of the liability issue. I didnt end up going with them, but am still doing a shuttle for the same reason.
Post # 14
I’d see if you can find a way to do a shuttle, even if you cut costs elsewhere. It’s a good safety precaution – do you want your guests drinking and then driving 30 min back to the hotel, in an unfamiliar location, late at night?
Post # 15
PP is right – you are putting your orchard “vision” above your guests’ comfort. You either need to do a shuttle or find a place guests can walk/cab/Uber to. Could you do Uber Events?
I just wouldn’t have any fun at a wedding where I knew I couldn’t drink and enjoy myself because I had a 30-minute drive ahead of me. And of course there will be people who will drink and drive. There just will be.