Post # 1
I have always envisioned the grand wedding on a huge scale. I am now torn! I found a great location in a tourist hot spot about 4 hours from my house. It is on a ranch, you get married on the beach, there is a path to go to a bar on the water for cocktails, then you walk up to a huge barn all redone with chandeliers, everything! GORGEOUS, but with gas prices this year, are people going to want to travel next year? I dont want to spend a lot on a wedding if nobody comes. So my other original option was in a gorgeous ballroom downtown, I am talking spectacular, (expensive, but within budget). I love the idea of it being closer to home, but I loved the idea of the beach wedding and the ranch, they dont have that around here though. What do I do???? Give me your opinions please! Should we just go away to Hawaii, just the two of us and come back here and have a huge reception?????? HELP ME PLEASE!!!! I am about in tears, I can plan everyone elses wedding, but when it comes to mine I am so frusterated!!!!!
Post # 3
If many of your guests live around your town, I wouldn’t think that four hours is that great of a distance to travel. I’ve usually had to travel for around 4-5 hours to get to many of the weddings I’ve attended. Carpooling with other guests is both affordable and fun. If that’s the only thing holding you back, I say go for it.
As someone who is planning a wedding in a location 3 and 1/2 hours from where I live — while completely do-able — it would be nice to have had it closer. It’s a lot easier to meet with vendors and drop by the site when planning decor and stuff. But I love my location (especially the price) so this is a tradeoff I’m willing to deal with. It’s just something else to consider.
Post # 4
I just got married a few weeks ago and we had an out of town wedding. Most of our friends and family drove about 3 1/2 -4 hours to get there. It did prohibit a few people but pretty much everyone we wanted to be there made it. We had thought about doing it at a resort on a lake but there weren’t many hotel options. Make sure if you do pick the beach/ranch (which sounds beautiful) that there is affordable hotel options for your guests. Also, a lot of the vendors charged more to go to the lake resort because it was out of the way. Another thing to consider is access to an airport if you’ll have guests flying in for the wedding. The resort we looked at was pretty far from an airport as opposed to the location we picked in the city. This made the arrangements easier on our guests.
On the other hand, your guests may enjoy getting out of town for a quick getaway at the beach. Either way it will be beautiful!! And ultimately it’s your choice so go with the one you love the most. Good luck!!
Post # 5
Four hours away doesn’t really count as a destination wedding. I would think that most people can drive that with today’s gas prices. We live in the OC and we are having our wedding at UCLA — it is supposed to be a 70 minute drive, but it has taken me 3 hours to get there before! The people who aren’t coming to the wedding because of distance all live out of state — so it would not have mattered where in So Cal we were having the wedding.
That said, the wedding party is getting a hotel in LA because the rehearsal dinner is there too.
Post # 6
Go with the location you want!
The only guests who couldn’t attend our wedding this summer due to travel costs would have to travel cross-country, literally from the east coast to the west coast. We have many guests drivinging about 10 hours (or flying the distance). I don’t think 4 hours is too far.
Post # 7
I say go with the location you want! Because of the gas prices many people aren’t going on vacations this year, so they may treat your wedding as a mini getaway and stay a few extra days!! Who knows what gas prices will be like next year?! They may even be down to $3.00/gallon. I say book your venue and send out your save-the-dates earlier than the norm so that people can prepare and save the extra money they may need. Having a whole year to save gas/hotel money for a 4 hour trip is no big deal.
My wedding locale is 6 hours away from most of my guests, but they will have known about it 14 months in advance so I’m not worried about it. If they cant be bothered to save $250 for gas and a room over a 14 month period than apparently our wedding isnt important to them!
Post # 8
Either one sounds great — you can’t go wrong.
As a guest, I’d rather not have to travel four hours each way — that pretty much means I’ll have to get a hotel room. I’d much rather go to a wedding downtown.
But, that’s just me — you know your guest list better than we do. Would they enjoy the drive and the overnight getaway? Would they be likely to stay overnight (and therefore stay at the reception late) or try to get home that evening (and therefore leave the reception early)?
It’s hard to say whether it would cut down on your attendance. I think that depends how large your guest list is — if it’s a big list, then the drive will probably make a difference. If you’re only inviting 100 or so close friends and family, then I’m sure they’ll happily join you wherever you are.
Post # 9
Like others have said, go with the ranch and oviously your first choice. If you are really worry about your guest and have some money saved from going with this venue, why not have the guest meet at a central location close to everyone and have a charter bus pick them up and drive them to the location and back. Their are always plus and minus with any venue. You just have to make the -s into +s the best way you can. Good luck!
Post # 10
Is there any way that you could rent some nice luxury coaches to take people too and from your wedding? That would kill two birds with one stone… no drinking and driving and they don’t have to pay for gas… just meet up at one central location in your town…
I am not a fan of hotel weddings and TOTALLY vote for the ranch but that is just my personal opinion….
Post # 11
Sorry Luxe… I didn’t read yours first! Obviously I like your idea!!
Post # 12
No prob LaborDayBride, obviously great minds think alike
Post # 13
As the bride and groom, you should be able to have the wedding that you both want. I truly feel that a wedding celebration is about celebrating the love that you both share in your journey together as husband and wife. With that said, those that truly want to be there will find a way to get there regardless of location. Those that don’t really care will find any excuse in the book to not show up, even if it’s in their backyard. So at the end of the day, just make sure the both of you are happy with venue. Everything else will just fall into place….I love love love the ranch idea!
Post # 14
Ask some local friends what they think. Then weigh the pros and cons – being considerate of your guests budgets and travel is very gracious, but don’t make the decision solely based on this dimension. It should just be one factor in your decision! If you LOVE the ranch idea, then it might be worth having some people who can’t/won’t make the trip. If you choose the ranch, then find ways to make it easier on yoru guests and show how much you appreciate them making the trip (the bus idea is GREAT!! you can also give them great Out of Town bags, organize activities etc etc)
I assume there is a good, reasonable lodging option nearby?
Post # 15
I don’t usually disagree with the poster majority, but in this case I do. You would have to be one of my closest friends or immediate family members for me to drive four hours for your wedding. My family would have been really upset if I made them drive that far when there were "spectacular" locations in the area, and I wouldn’t ever have put them in that situation. I wouldn’t expect the friends or family with children to attend. Eight hours of drive time in one or two days is often too much for young ones.
Post # 16
You should have your wedding where you want. Just be prepared that if you have it four hours away, chances are that 150 people (or whatever your guest count is) probably won’t show up. Generally, weddings that are held out of the area (more than an hour and a half away) are attended by family and close friends. In your case, four hours each way isn’t a day trip, it’s a weekend excursion. Like the previous commenter said, people other than those closest to you will probably not want to go through the expense and the trouble – but then, why would you want those people at your wedding, anyway?