Post # 1
My fiance and I booked our venues 2 months after we got engaged. Our ceremony site is in a large greenhouse, which I always wanted. Our idea for a reception was at least 150 guests for the huge party feel. We were both open to any reception site, and we found one in our budget as a recommendation from my parents and our friends. The venue is stunning with high ceilings, beams, and large windows. The reception site also provides the food and open bar for 60/pp. The only problem at the time was that the reception and venue sites are 30 minutes away from each other. My fiance’s family is from the east coast, and our wedding is in the midwest. We spoke to them about the logistics, and they were agreeable to the commute. However, after booking the reception site, we started getting some passive-agressive remarks from his family about the commute. I now feel guilty, but my fiance tells me to not worry because his family will still come.
I found another reception venue only 5 minutes away from our ceremony site. If I book there, I forfeit the deposit I placed on the original venue. This place is a courtyard garden, which I think fits the theme after a greenhouse ceremony. The capacity is smaller than the original venue. We would have to cut the guest list down to 80-100, and the price is 80/pp. At this point because we have so many out of town guests who may not attend, I prefer a smaller and more intimate feel. The original reception venue has a guest minumum of 125.
I need advice from bees who have already had their wedding or are in the later stages of planning! Should I just forfeit the 1k deposit and book at the new place? I’m not a fan of putting 1k to waste, but I will to make family happy!
Post # 2
This is your wedding, not his families. People will always have something to complain about. Just celebrate your special day and ignore the complainers.
Post # 3
Would these individuals have to rent a car no matter what?
What are the logistics between airport, hotels they would likely stay at, ceremony site, and reception site?
Have you already sent save the dates (thus making cutting your guest list difficult if not impossible)?
Depending on those factors, I’d probably factor a shuttle from ceremony to reception into your budget and potentially shuttles back to the hotels. It is one thing if it is one or two out of town folks, but it sounds like his entire side is from out of state.
Post # 4
Personally I don’t think I’d forfeit 1k based soley on passive-aggressive remarks, especially since they had previously approved the commute. Frankly they’re being quite petty if they’re whining about a 30 min drive. They’ll get over it.
Indoor receptions are always preferrable, in my opinion. It’ll be much cheaper to keep the venue at this point, and that place sounds lovely so it’s not as though you’d be settling. Look at it this way, is pleasing your family—over something rather obsolete—worth 1k+ to you?
Post # 5
annabananabee : His family told us they plan to rent cars. I guess the issue is that they won’t be able to drink as much if they have to drive from the reception. We addressed this and are looking into booking a shuttle service between the hotel, ceremony, and reception. We haven’t sent save the dates yet, and haven’t booked any hotel blocks or shuttle services. We’re still exploring our options to address these logistical issues.
Post # 6
kiram : That’s exactly how my fiance feels. He doesn’t want to waste any money that can potentially go toward other details and splurges. We really didn’t think a 30 minute drive was bad. We plan to provide a shuttle so people can drink. Still, we have had some pushback about how a gap for commute breaks the flow of the day.
Post # 7
It’s really up to what you want and your vision for the day! I personally would probably stick with the original venue – 30 minutes isn’t an awful commute and like PPs have said, you can always look into shuttle services.
Out of curiosity, what is the original venue? I’m also in the Midwest and that sounds EXACTLY like my reception venue down to pricing and everything!
Post # 8
I think the way to proceed is to go over your guest list and decide who you really want with you on your wedding day. If you want to invite everyone on the larger guest list, you need to keep your venue. If there are people you included when you were still in the first wave of excitement of wedding planning, who you would be comfortable cutting, consider that option.
If you are going to provide a shuttle, the 30 minute drive is irrelevant, other than the impact on your finances. It’s going to take 3-4 buses to transfer 150 people, or one bus doing a loop which is going to take a long time- more than one hour for each 50 people. If you only have one bus, some people will be delivered to the reception venue a full 2 hours before the last guests arrive.
Post # 9
buenavrm : no, a shuttle service would solve all of your problems.
Post # 10
If you’re going to have to cut your guest list, and lose 1k, you definitely should not change your reception venue.
Post # 11
buenavrm : Yeah, if I where you I would look into a shuttle. You should be able to find something for 1000 or under if you shop around.
I was able to get a 44 person school bus for 700 dollas, enough to cover the first and lat 4 hours of my wedding.
Post # 12
buenavrm : I went to a wedding that had about a 45 min commute between the ceremony and receptions. it really wasn’t that bad at all and I don’t remember anyone complaining! We all had a great time. That said, with so many out of town guests it might be nice to provide a shuttle service, which I bet you can do with the 1,000 you save by keeping your original reception venue:)
Post # 13
+1 for the shuttle. We booked a shuttle to bring people from the hotel to our venue and then home (ceremony+reception same site) and it was great! Being a Destination Wedding not everyone had cars, and we had a great open bar that we wanted people to enjoy. We had 2 people that still drove due to elderly family members, but other than that the shuttle was a hit.
I wouldn’t lose the $1k AND cut your guest list AND pay more per head. Plus, a 5m drive is still going require a car.
Post # 14
buenavrm : it’s 30 minutes. I was super chuffed to find somewhere suitable that’s 30 minutes away. Like “go us”. Shuttle is a good idea. We’re doing one but mainly because there is little parking at our ceremony site and our reception venue is a hotel where people might stay the night before.
Post # 15
buenavrm : Nope, I wouldn’t change it. They should have been straight forward when you initially asked. If they make more progressive comments just ignore it. It’s your wedding – not theirs. And losing $1000 Is nothing to snuff about.