(Closed) Importance of Transportation

posted 10 years ago in Logistics
Post # 3
Member
388 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2018

I think it’s a nice touch for sure, but only works well if you know the majority of guests are all staying at the same hotel.

I’ve been to many weddings that offered transportation, and even if people are staying at a nearby hotel andyou set up the bus at a central hotel, it’s usually only utilized by the people staying at the pick-up location.

Again, it’s a nice touch, but many people will opt for their own transportation anyway because they want to be able to leave when they want, and not on a schedule.  This is assuming you’ll only offer one pick-up time, and one departure time. 

If you’re willing to have the bus run at multiple times, it may provide more flexibility for guests to take you up on your generous offer.

Post # 4
Member
1061 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2008

I think this is one of those nice-to-haves that often gets confused with must-haves. In some situations, it is a must-have, but it doesn’t sound like yours is one of those.

It’s a nice touch, but if you’re out of money, you’re out of money. And if most people are coming from out of town, they’ll probably have rented a car or found someone to carpool with. I’d just provide the numbers of local cab companies.

Post # 5
Member
305 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2008

I certainly don’t think that you need it.  It is nice to have, but certainly not required.  You say most guests are from out of town.  Well, they got there somehow.  So they must have cars and such.

Post # 6
Member
375 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2018

We are providing charter buses, but only because our venue(ceremony/reception) is up a windy mountain road. Living in Colorado, and being used to driving in the mountains, I found it to be a little scary. I did not want out of town guests to have the same feeling, especially since they are not used to driving in the mountains (I figured it would be worse after cocktails!). In my case, I felt like it was necessary. In your case, I feel like it would be an extra touch. Whatever you decide will be fine:)

Post # 7
Member
402 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2008

I agree with everyone above. this is a nice to have.

You dont need it and since you don’t really have money in the budget for it, I wouldn’t do it. I doubt any guests would miss it either.

Post # 8
Member
1246 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2009

We’re going to try to do it but, if we can’t, we’re going to have lots of cards with the #s of cab companies readily available at our reception. That way, groups of people can call taxis and split the fare on the way back to wherever they’re staying.

Post # 9
Member
217 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2008

I disagree and think it is a Must Have.  I think favors, boudoir photos, wishing trees, garters, e-pics (the list is long) are all things that can be swapped in order to provide transportation to your guests.

Having gone to 7 out-of-town weddings last year, I have many reasons I think it is very important: Guests can save $$ by not renting a car, 30 minutes is a long drive – people get lost, some of these towns didn’t have enough taxis to accomodate 160+ wedding guests and people waited a VERY long time for taxis after the reception is over, it offers a huge convenience for your out-of-town guests, and quite frankly, it is the hospitable thing to do.

But the number 1 reason is to eliminate drinking and driving.  If you are taking on the responsibility of serving alcohol to your guests, you should take on the responsibility of providing their transportation (if for no other reaon than the fact that YOU could be held partially liable if they get in an accident after being served at your event).  In the hive, this opinion of mine is frequently met with comments like "our guests are adults and they are responsible enough to not get drunk and/or call a taxi."  Really?  You know how responsible your cousins date is, your FI’s uncle is, your parents’ friends are??

My sister spent the second half of her senior year of high school in the ICU after being hit by a drunk driver.  After that, we all bought breathalyzers (they are under $100 online) because we realized that we do not know what .08 feels like, and we didn’t know how often we were perhaps dancing the line.  I didn’t know the difference from .09 and .07 (and no one does if they haven’t used the tool) we all have these silly guidelines like "1 drink per hour" – but there is enormous individual variability, and that logic is sure to fail.

So now that I know what .08 "feels" like – and how quickly I can get there – I am confident saying that the majority of drinking wedding guests at ALL weddings are at .08  I urge people to get their own breathalyzers and learn what .08 feels and looks like and how easy it is to get there.

And for those who say "if they choose to drive that is there problem, not mine" – these are your GUESTS – you care enough about these people to invite them to your wedding, don’t you care enough about them to make sure they get home safely?  We are renting school busses (not sexy, but lots less expensive) and we had to cut a few things to afford them – but transportation is a NECESSITY.

 

Post # 10
Member
1061 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2008

Enmoore, please don’t take what I said the wrong way. I actually completely agree with you (we’re having school buses also for just this reason), and I know that this perspective can get attacked in many forums. The gist of what I was trying to say is that everyone has different situations. It just seems like people keep having to spend and spend and spend, and there comes a time when the spending needs to be prioritized.

Post # 11
Member
41 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: June 2008

I agree with enmoore — it’s about more than hospitality, it’s about safety.  I can’t think of a worse ending to a wedding than to have someone injured or killed (or have a guest do so to an innocent person).  I know that many of my Out of Town guests are used to living in cities and taking taxis home, and aren’t used to controlling their consumption with an eye to driving, so we’re shelling out big bucks for charter buses to the hotel where everyone is staying (the wedding is in a smallish town without adequate taxis, and there are several local weddings that night).

 FWIW, I think drunk driving is the sort of problem that can be greatly reduced by peer pressure and positive modeling — so I’m sending the message to my guests that it’s not ok with me by providing transportation, rather than having to police them while they’re supposed to be having a good time.

 If you were having a lot of non-drinking guests or a dry wedding, I wouldn’t worry about providing transportation except as a very nice add-on.  But most of my 20-something guests are lushes!

Post # 11
Member
41 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: June 2008

I agree with enmoore — it’s about more than hospitality, it’s about safety.  I can’t think of a worse ending to a wedding than to have someone injured or killed (or have a guest do so to an innocent person).  I know that many of my Out of Town guests are used to living in cities and taking taxis home, and aren’t used to controlling their consumption with an eye to driving, so we’re shelling out big bucks for charter buses to the hotel where everyone is staying (the wedding is in a smallish town without adequate taxis, and there are several local weddings that night).

 FWIW, I think drunk driving is the sort of problem that can be greatly reduced by peer pressure and positive modeling — so I’m sending the message to my guests that it’s not ok with me by providing transportation, rather than having to police them while they’re supposed to be having a good time.

 If you were having a lot of non-drinking guests or a dry wedding, I wouldn’t worry about providing transportation except as a very nice add-on.  But most of my 20-something guests are lushes!

Post # 12
Member
344 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2008

I am on the fence here, this is the exact reason we’re having our ceremony and reception all at the hotel that we’re staying at. Too much guilt otherwise, and I don’t want that on my wedding day. Anyway, I know this is not normally the way it’s done, especially when you have the ceremony at a church. I have been to weddings with every combination possible. Two years ago (I was in the wedding), church to reception was 45 minutes to an hour, reception to hotel was about 30 minutes. There was a limo bus thing for the bridal party from the church to the reception, but that was it. From the reception to the hotel, they chartered A bus, but since it was a 30 minute drive and most of regular (non-bridal party) guests drove there anyway, they drove back to the hotel. The rest of us who didn’t drive had to wait around for this bus that came every hour or so! This was a huge pain, the reception ends at a certain time, you can’t have an hour or more in between pick ups. So either have enough for most people to get on the bus at or around the same time, or don’t. I felt like we were left out to dry, however if we knew that we would be driving, we would have planned better (ie, no drinking for me). Last June we went to a wedding that had transportation to and from the reception only for the bridal party and their dates (again I was in the wedding). But this left everyone else to fend for themselves. I think the best way (and safest) to handle this is make sure there is enough room for everyone traveling. If it means 5 busses all showing up at the same time and making one trip, then so be it. But you said you’re on a tight budget (not that you have run out of money, because you splurged on other items), so you do have to make choices. I really couldn’t be pissed at someone for not providing this, so therefore I don’t think it is a must-have, but more of a nice thing. I also feel that if some people can’t control themselves (which I know there are a lot of), then they need to take some responsibility (fat chance, right?). However, here’s an option that is both safe and free for you: call a whole bunch of cab companies, tell them the situation, and have them line up outside at the end of the reception. This won’t really accomplish the "getting to" the reception, but they can come pick up their car the next day. Make sure to tell people there will be cabs so they can plan accordingly, and maybe even take a cab to the reception so the car isn’t there to tempt them. Wow, this was a long ramble.

Post # 13
Member
61 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: September 2007

we went back and forth on this a lot and in the end didn’t have money for it, plus most people weren’t staying in a hotel after the wedding (they stayed the night before and drove home after b/c it was only an hour).

one preventative measure is to close your bar an hour before the end of the reception, at least for alcohol.  many places will do this automatically, but you can ask anyway in case.  we actually had beer/wine/soda only, and due to an error, had an open bar for cocktail hour (which is what we would have wanted so it worked out and we didn’t have to pay extra!).  it worked out nicely b/c people got mixed drinks, but only in the beginning.  i find that people tend to be less responsible about drinking cocktails and the mixing of drinks makes the effects even worse.  people seemed to be decently responsible for the beer and wine.

however, if you do know that most people are heavy drinkers, either designate a few drivers going back to the hotel, pay for the transportation, or ask people if they would be interested in the transportation service (and have them pay maybe $10 or something and you cover the rest). 

Post # 14
Member
2408 posts
Buzzing bee

i think it depends on the factors surrounding your wedding. are you in a city where parking/traffic could alter things [like nyc, la, etc], are you serving loads of alcohol? is the venue difficult to find or get to?

if not, then i don’t think it is necessary. it’s nice but not a must have. for the out-of-town weddings i’ve been too, i always rented a car so transportation was never an issue [since i knew i would have to do that from the get-go…how else would i have gotten to the hotel from the airport?] so i’m sure your guests have already made the necessary arrangements for transport. then again, there was never a real need for shuttles anyway.

if you’re concerned about the drinking, then you can take the preventative that nejgne and leahb mentioned above.

Post # 15
Member
2292 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2008

I’m going to agree that while in some cases transportation is a nice thing to provide, it’s not necessary.  And your guests may, or may not use it.  And unless the majority of your guests are Out of Town and therefore staying in hotels, it’s not really practical.  We have 150 guests, of which about 30 will be staying in hotels.  The remainder are either local or live close enough (less than 2 hours) that they will drive home after the reception (which ends at 9:30, just because of that).  I do happen to think that I know my friends and family well enough to know that they drink responsibly.  But really, enmoore, would you have me pick all 120 of them up at their houses, and then drive them home later?  We are having a professional bartender, not just a friend pouring, and I trust my friends to make sure, as I have seen them do many times, that they stop drinking early, or have a designated driver.

If you have a venue that’s quite far from anywhere, or a large number of guests staying in the same hotels, you’re more likely to have guests use any tranportation you provide.  However, your hotels may also have shuttle transportation available – especially if you have a block of rooms, check and see if the hotel van can shuttle guests to and from your venue. 

And if you’re trying to encourage responsible drinking: have a professional bartender, don’t allow underage guests to drink; provide a reasonable rather than an excessive amount of alcohol for the number of guests (once it’s gone, they’ll stop – hey!); stop serving before the end of the reception, and make water and coffee and soft drinks available for some period of time after the music stops and the lights come back up; and designate family and friends to keep an eye on things, deal with anybody who seems to be overindulging as it happens, and see your guest safely to the door, including calling a taxi for them if they seem in any questionable condition. 

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