Weddings abroad

(286 Posts)
FreeWee Wed 02-Oct-13 18:05:38

Is it just me or are they an excuse to shift the cost of a wedding onto the guests, away from the hosts, the bride and groom? DH is best man at one next year, chosen because the bride and groom can't afford a wedding in the UK apparently. But we can't really afford to go abroad with our DD when DH will have been in full time education for a year. AIBU?

wispywoo1 Wed 02-Oct-13 18:14:19

YABU. You're not paying for the wedding, you're paying to go to the wedding. If I was getting married I'd want to do it abroad. It might be a case of either do it abroad or don't do it at all. Also the couple may think doing it abroad is a good way to weed out the purple who don't really care about attending.

Ragwort Wed 02-Oct-13 18:16:16

Surely the easiest thing is for your DH to decline to be best man, did he know the wedding was abroad when he accepted the invitation to be best man?

All he needs to do is say, 'sorry, I hadn't realised the wedding was overseas, we will not be able to join you & I therefore cannot be best man'.

It would be mad to go into debt just to attend someone's wedding. If your friends don't understand that then they aren't really good friends are they? Members of my family have married abroad, we sent our apologies, no hard feelings.

WhyIRayLiotta Wed 02-Oct-13 18:17:33

I want to get married abroad. I know that it is extra expense for guests (the very small number I will invite) But if they don't want to pay it they don't have to. It is an invitation not a demand. YABU.

also - a wedding abroad isn't nessesarily a cheaper option for the B&G!

Don't go, problem solved.

Bearbehind Wed 02-Oct-13 18:23:45

OMG wispywoo, I can't actually believe people think that way.

If it is a case of get married abroad or don't do it at all, the couple should opt for the latter every time if their guests can't afford to attend.

I hate weddings abroad unless it is just the couple attending and they don't expect others to go (unless they really want to)

WTF should anyone else have to spend their hard earned money and holiday time on going to a venue of someone else's choice?

Fair enough, if other people really want to go but they should not be expected to do so and it really shouldn't be viewed as an indicator of the strength of their relationship with the couple. The couple are testing that strength by asking IMO.

BrokenSunglasses Wed 02-Oct-13 18:23:48

It's not just you. I think it's very selfish to ask someone to be a part of the wedding party without paying their costs, or at least waiting until they have accepted the invitation.

When you ask someone to be best man or a bridesmaid at a wedding abroad you are putting a lot of pressure on them and their family, and you put them in a position where they are going to feel bad if they say no.

Weddings abroad are a lovely idea, but when couples invite people to join them, to me it basically says that they care more about their venue than they do about the guests they want to share the day with.

OP, in your position, we would decline the invite.

SugarHut Wed 02-Oct-13 18:25:50

Expecting a guest to pay for their travel and an overnight room when the wedding is a little drive away is fair. Making someone a major part of your day, then booking it in, say, Barbados and expecting them to pay for flights and their accommodation is just ridiculous. They are openly getting married there because it's cheaper to them, and getting the honeymoon rolled into the same package. It's a monster cost to you, for what, it's not your special day. There will be no big ceremony, no big party to enjoy. If it's a cheaper style beach wedding, it's 20 mins in a pagoda with hotel guests stood just out of shot in their swimwear.

If they are covering your costs, then it is fine for you to take the loss of earnings, a few days off, and go. That's a reasonable sacrifice. He's their best man, if they want him there then he should not be footing the bill.

BackforGood Wed 02-Oct-13 18:26:30

YANBU if the B&G "expect" people to travel with them.
Some B&Gs are fine with understanding that it's not what you are going to spend your money on / go into debt for, others are not.
So it depends.

Wispy woo: what a horrible, horrible thing to say!! They are a way to weed out the ones who don't care about attending?!

One of the most ignorant things I've ever read on here....

Bridezilla comments all over the place!

And I got married abroad myself!!!!

AngusAndElspethsThistleWhistle Wed 02-Oct-13 18:32:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

specialsubject Wed 02-Oct-13 18:34:15

actually it is quite arrogant to assume that anyone cares about your 'public statement of a private intention' !! Couples should be delighted if anyone comes along and thank them for coming - which has been my experience at the last few I've been to.

If you happen to want and can afford a holiday at the venue, accept. Otherwise, decline politely, explaining why if you want to.

anyone who is offended because someone doesn't accept an invite to their wedding needs to grow up.

Panzee Wed 02-Oct-13 18:35:59

I got married abroad because we wanted a small wedding and doing it in a different country was the only way we would get away with that. grin . But then we didn't do best man/bridesmaids etc so nobody felt obligated to attend.

SantanaLopez Wed 02-Oct-13 18:38:58

Depends if said bride and groom will throw a hissy fit when no one wants to spend their two weeks of holiday a year at their wedding! Some people handle it well, others don't.

sue52 Wed 02-Oct-13 18:42:49

I've been to a couple of weddings abroad. They were both second weddings where the couples had grown up children and older friends who would enjoy the country and venue. It would be a bit much to expect busy guests to plan childcare and their main holiday around the bride and grooms whims but for older/semi retired guests like me and DH, it's really rather pleasant.

wispywoo1 Wed 02-Oct-13 18:44:25

Chill out. I said it 'could' be a reason for having their wedding abroad. some people come from large families and cannot afford the wedding they want whilst paying four their whole extended family to attend. There are several reasons for having a wedding abroad. If you cannot afford it simply say thanks but no thanks. You won't be the only ones.

YABU. I love weddings abroad. It gives me a chance to see a place I've normally never been before, or probably would never go to otherwise, with a group of friends that I don't get to see that often.

I'm off to two next week, one in Oz and one in SA. This is an amazing trip that I wouldn't have been able to do or wouldn't have ever thought of doing without my friends getting married, and I get to do it with all of my friends.

Let's face it - it IS saving the bride and groom thousands, if it's just basically a 20 min ceremony tagged onto the beginning of the honeymoon (which they would have gone on anyway). That was the way i did it. We WANTED a very low-key wedding with minimal fuss but fancied having it in a nice place. I would never have dreamed of demanding that guests come to the Caribbean to fulfil those wishes!

I got the wedding I wanted and did not expect anyone to foot the bill of taking part. We did have an evening reception when we got back to the uk to appease the great aunties of the family but I felt embarrassed at the fact that a few guests weren't local and had to fork out for overnight accommodation and yet we hadnt provided them with a full day's proper wedding. Their call, of course, whether they wanted to pay to come just to an evening party and I would have understood totally if people had declined on the basis of it being a lot to pay out just to come to a party!

AcidNails Wed 02-Oct-13 18:45:29

Bit of an assumption to make really, no?

We considered getting married abroad, for no reason other than the place is very special to us. I have friends who've married abroad to avoid the all to common family politics etc.

Granted, some people get married abroad for cost reasons, but even then - so what?? Not everyone wants hundreds of guests, and I'm quite sure that the majority plan an overseas wedding knowing that not everyone will be able to attend.

We got married abroad 20 years ago . We didn't particularly want anyone to attend. Our idea was to get married with two randomers on a beach. Anyone who wanted was welcome to join us. 17 people did grin

quoteunquote Wed 02-Oct-13 18:50:27

It might be a case of either do it abroad or don't do it at all

You don't make any sense wispywoo1

How could a wedding be cheaper to do abroad, than popping down the registry office?

Also the couple may think doing it abroad is a good way to weed out the purple who don't really care about attending.

That would be a very odd way to think, and anyone who does think like that is unlikely to have any friends anyway,

People not deciding to spend thousands and use up their holiday entitlements, doesn't mean they don't care, it means they are sensible adults who make choices that will not mean they run up debts.

Ragwort Wed 02-Oct-13 19:24:44

Why is there so much angst about wedding invitations - the key is in the word 'invitation' - if the venue/date/child-free/dress/present arrangements don't suit you - you don't have to go - I have turned down a fair few wedding invitations in my time, I genuinely don't think people are that bothered - surely it's less expensive and so you almost expect a few non-attenders grin.

I have said this before on Mumsnet 'it is an invitation, not a summons'.

I haven't been to an abroad wedding and wouldn't be likely to be able to go to one for many years to come now (small DC, small disposable income).

DH went to one in Barcelona without me and the DC where the groom's family lived - but they created a weekend of events for the guests, and it's an Easyjet city with cheap hostels, so not the farflung Caribbean destination weddings as described above. They actually had a dual-location wedding as they'd been living in South America, so Barca was the "local" wedding as far as we were concerned! That kind of "city break" wedding is a different kettle of fish, IMHO as it is doable on a budget and with only as much time off work as a UK stately home wedding, for example.

I think brides and grooms who expect people to "just" arrange their annual holiday around their wedding are shortsighted - the timing of leave and cost of the holiday may be unrealistic for them even if that would be the kind of holiday they'd choose. But for many it would represent several years' worth of holiday budget, to go to a destination they aren't interested in. That's a big sacrifice.

Having the reception at home and inviting everybody is good though. Excluding people who can't justify thousands of pounds long haul from any part in your celebrations is bad form IMHO.

If you're having a private wedding and don't want any guests then it doesn't matter whether you're in Morecambe or Mauritius!

FreeWee Wed 02-Oct-13 19:44:28

Seems kind of 50/50 so I'm glad I asked. The 'invitation' came by text and included how much per person the accommodation would be. Initially we were told it was a 5 hour drive from the nearest airport so they recommended us driving (mainland Europe not Caribbean thankfully!) but being a researcher I've discovered it's not going to be that difficult to get a flight. Expensive yes, plus hire car, but driving from the UK was really freaking me out. Bride and groom and their family and friends are all very local (went to school together in our area) so going abroad is a stretch for everyone.

We don't have to go but it is DH's best friend so really we do have to go. And him going without me would only save a little bit (single person supplement etc) and cause a whole world of problems that wouldn't be worth it.

Just wondered really if being miffed that brides and grooms choosing to save money by getting married abroad and expecting their guests to pay for flights/travel and accommodation is a bit selfish? Feel a bit obliged because it's DH's best mate and he's best man. Been invited to others abroad in the past and declined for cost reasons. Can't really see that happening here as the real cost would be too big a price to pay. But just wondered if I was BU.

Bearbehind Wed 02-Oct-13 19:50:58

It's your decision OP but IMO if by 'the real cost' you mean your friendship with the couple, I think they have instigated the rift, not you.

If you really can't afford it, don't do it. If they are real friends, they will understand, if they aren't then it doesn't matter.

hermioneweasley Wed 02-Oct-13 19:52:52

OP, YANBU. In the scenario you described, it is just passing the costs on to your guests. Obviously not the case where one of the couple is from a different country and it's meaningful.

I assume you won't get them a present?

angeltulips Wed 02-Oct-13 19:56:55

Middle England mumsnet always comes out on threads like this - what about the thousands of people who have 2 homes because they're not both from Britain?

But to answer the op, presumably if your DH is close enough to the happy couple to be in the wedding party, it is no big deal to decline on cost/time/can't be bothered/I got mugged there once and don't want to go back reasons? As a poster upthread said, it's an invitation not a summons.

BrokenSunglasses Wed 02-Oct-13 19:59:33

I think the thing that has annoyed me about the two overseas weddings that I have been invited to is that the price for the couple is based on how many guests they get to come. That alone just seems to taint the whole thing for me.

angeltulips Wed 02-Oct-13 20:00:54

Sorry x post

I would just send your DH - you'll save 2x flights + single supplement (and maybe he could share with another single to avoid that?)

And if they don't like that they can get fucked go take a running jump

Bearbehind Wed 02-Oct-13 20:01:43

What about them angeltulips?

No one should have to go to a wedding, especially if it involves a significant cost in terms of time and money, and couples should never expect that they SIL, regardless of their reason for choosing their venue.

Bearbehind Wed 02-Oct-13 20:02:51

Will not SIL!

angeltulips Wed 02-Oct-13 20:06:27

Oh I quite agree

Just all this "well you should have it at HOME so EVERYONE can COME"

Sort of assumes there is one place that everyone's from. Which, ironically, is exactly the case here grin

Tbh I don't understand the prevailing mumsnet mindset on weddings (ie that they are a massive inconvenience that noone enjoys and it's best to try to wiggle out of attending wherever humanly possible, that the b&g are massively BU to even think that any of their friends would want to give up a day with their families to watch them get married etc etc) & so I do rather read all these threads with that tone. Needless to say, I don't agree with it!

FreeWee Wed 02-Oct-13 20:10:13

I will be going. I may be moaning but ultimately I will be sucking it up and save like mad (and max out the credit card). I just wondered if I had any justification in being miffed.

FreeWee Wed 02-Oct-13 20:10:59

I sincerely hope they won't be asking for gifts or that will be a whole new thread!!

UnicornsNotRiddenByGrownUps Wed 02-Oct-13 20:16:36

DH is best man at not one but two very far flung weddings next year. We really want to go to both but hmm it's so expensive it's already stressing me out.

SquigletPie Wed 02-Oct-13 20:18:56

Weddings abroad are a lovely idea, but when couples invite people to join them, to me it basically says that they care more about their venue than they do about the guests they want to share the day with.

We got married abroad because it was what we both had dreamt of. After all a wedding is about the bride and groom making a commitment to each other and not a party just for the benefit of the guests!

We let our close friends know a year in advance where and when. Some were able to come and some weren't- for varying reasons. All our friends were happy for us to have the day we wanted and we had no issue with those who couldn't be there. Why should we? It would be a very shallow friendship if there were any hard feelings on either side.

My brother and his wife couldn't make it because my SIL got pregnant shortly after the date was set. Were either he or I mortified and devastated? Of course not, plenty of other great days for us to enjoy together.

Bearbehind Wed 02-Oct-13 20:18:56

I would stake a significant sum on them asking for a present as well!

NachoAddict Wed 02-Oct-13 20:20:32

We have just got engaged and are planning our big day in Jamaica. The reason being that we don't want a huge do, we just want us and the dc and a fantastic holiday that we probably wouldn't be able to justify otherwise and certainly not on top of a wedding.

However we aren't expecting anyone to go with us, not even family, I wont be having adult bridesmaids and dp will only have a best man if his friend can afford it.

Also we are giving them us three years notice so if anyone really wants to come they have time to save.

expatinscotland Wed 02-Oct-13 20:25:06

'But we can't really afford to go abroad with our DD when DH will have been in full time education for a year. AIBU?'

Then why say yes to being best man? I don't get this. It's not compulsory. If you can't afford it, say, 'Sorry, thanks but I can't attend.'

Threalamandaclarke Wed 02-Oct-13 20:47:05

It's far less expensive to marry in a holiday destination than to host a wedding at home. And that means that all your "guests" are paying a lot of money to attend.
Try to get over it so you can enjoy it.

Threalamandaclarke Wed 02-Oct-13 20:47:55

Or decline.
Can you decline?

Alconleigh Wed 02-Oct-13 21:09:10

Don't go if you can't afford it. Weddings are due a BIG backlash as far as I am concerned. An awful lot of people need to learn that no one outside their immediate family really gives a fuck.

Grannylipstick Wed 02-Oct-13 21:18:36

When my first daughter married 4 years ago she toyed with the idea of a wedding abroad but didn't feel it was fair to be asking her friends to pay to be a guest. She couldn't afford to pay for all of her friends! She then decided on a secret wedding 12 months ahead. We told no one except 1 of my friends and her father and my mother. (We have 4 other children). We planned it all in secret, only telling our other children 1 week before the wedding. It was the best wedding ever. Her 6 friends turned up thinking they were all going out for lunch (they were told to dress reasonably smart) and were all whisked off to witness the wedding ceremony in a country house hotel. There were 22 of us. No fuss. No fall outs. No worrying about inviting cousins they had never met! My 2nd daughter married 2 years ago and decided on a marquee on a beach in Cornwall. Fabulous day , great weather but lots of stress trying to please sooooo many people. Both of these weddings were cost free for their guests.

Bearbehind Wed 02-Oct-13 21:25:04

What alconleigh said.

Some weddings are getting out of control now and the couples think about nothing but themselves.

I detest the view that guests should be honoured to be invited- most people really don't give a shit and they are not honoured to attend.

In many instances they are financially and logistically inconvenienced and couples should understand that and make their decisions accordingly.

Jengnr Wed 02-Oct-13 21:31:10

People on here always act like weddings are about the guests and get all HOW DARE THEY?!?!? It's ridiculous. Even the most reasonable wedding request gets Bridezilla bandied about.

I don't think it's unreasonable to expect guests to pay for their own travel and yes, sometimes it's used as a way of making sure some people don't come. But ultimately the wedding is about the bride and groom and that's how it should be.

ILetHimKeep20Quid Wed 02-Oct-13 21:31:14

Just don't go if you have to get into debt and will be so consumed with resentment.

I got married abroad, to a place where it's easy enough to get a deal to, a resort location with lots of choice regarding accommodation and flights.

Didn't officially invite anyone, just spoke to people about what we were doing and tools then they were more than welcome to join us. 29 people did. 2 of which have since for married in the same location.

We didn't dictate to people about where to stay or flights, people were quite capable of sorting their own holidays out.t

bumperella Wed 02-Oct-13 21:41:47

A wedding is a major rite of passage and it's normal to want friends and family there to mark the occasion. If you don't want to go or can't afford it... then say so, apologise, and remember to send a nice card for the day. B&G (if normal human beings) would miss you on the day, but would understand and not get huffy.

If your DH wants to go (and in his shoes, I'd want to be there) then as it's driving distance, get DH to ask around to see if he can car-share with other guests, and share petrol/ferry costs. He'd end up paying single supplement for the hotel room, but that's surely not going to be outrageous? Or is there someone he could book into a twin room with?

YABU in being grumpy about being invited to a friends wedding. You'd be hurt if you weren't invited. Either go with good grace or turn down the invite or send DH on his own. Going with sour grapes is the worst of all worlds, life is too short.

MidniteScribbler Wed 02-Oct-13 21:56:02

Overseas weddings are my own personal form of hell. Everyone seems to want to get married in Bali. I detest Bali. Crappy disgusting hole full of aussie tourists looking to get high or drunk cheaply. I'm not wasting my holidays or my money going to a place I wouldn't normally ever want to set foot in again. Unfortunately it led to a falling out with a friend as not only was her wedding going to be in one of the most expensive places in Bali, it was during school terms. As a teacher, I can't just up and leave for her ten day "weddingbration" as she dubbed it. I had no interest in "Bridal Bungee Jumping" or "Hen's Hot Tub" that she had come up with to fill the ten days, and I don't particularly agree that all of those things are the "holiday of a lifetime" at a "mere" $10,000 (australian) per person. The many rsvps declining her "weddingbration" led to weeks of "well now I know who my real friends are" type status' on facebook. Bridezilla hell.

If you want to get married overseas, then nick off and go and do it. Don't expect everyone else to pay for the 'privilege'. Have a party when you get home and I'll happily come along, bring a present and celebrate with you.

bumperella Wed 02-Oct-13 22:10:46

Midnightscribbler - that's staggering!!!! Obv outrageous behaviour but at an extre,me end of the spectrum (surely?).

FreeWee Wed 02-Oct-13 22:34:19

bumperella fair point about sour grapes. I guess I'll just get my moan out here then swallow my sour grapes (to mix my metaphors) and enjoy the day with them.

TombOfMummyBeerest Wed 02-Oct-13 22:36:36

I'm neither for nor against destination weddings-to each's own and all that. Particularly if it's something an ancient ruin or...with turtles or something.

But the whole idea is having a wedding and honeymoon rolled into one, right?

So why have a honeymoon with friends and family? Everyone knows why you're late to dinner. ..AWK-WAAAARD...

MidniteScribbler Wed 02-Oct-13 22:40:18

bumperella her true colours certainly came out during that wedding. Even after pissing off half of her invitees because they didn't attend, she then posted a list on facebook of everyone who was invited, didn't attend, but hadn't sent her a gift. She then put up a second list which was those who did make a contribution to her wishing well and how much they contributed. Tagged everyone. Classy.

CeliaLytton Wed 02-Oct-13 22:50:29

YABU. What about people who get married in a hotel with an expensive bar! Or somewhere you have to pay for parking?

If you can afford it, go. If not, don't.

CeliaLytton Wed 02-Oct-13 22:51:19

X post, very mature and reasonable OP, swallow those grapes and have a lovely time!

FreeWee Wed 02-Oct-13 23:02:17

expat he agreed before the venue being abroad was even discussed. Initially it was to be a typically British wedding but then dreams of overseas venues took over. Would be pretty petty saying I'll only be your best man if you have it in the UK." Best man with strings attached isn't really in the spirit of things.

I'm happy that some think I am BU and some think I'm not. It's a bit whingy of me really because DH will have had no income for 12 months so it'll be the biggest of big stretches. But we're very happy they're getting married so I guess I can vent on MN a little about being a bit peeved they've shifted the cost to us but ultimately I'd only be shooting myself in the foot if I went with sour grapes as it'll be our family holiday next year so I will definitely make the most of it. It's not actually located anywhere you'd want to go on holiday (random venue in the middle of the country) but I will employ my research skills and find somewhere not too far away to have our holiday.

Threalamandaclarke Thu 03-Oct-13 07:04:05

I can't spend £5000 in a bar at a wedding these days
But an overseas holiday can easily cost that.
And it takes at least a week out of your annual leave to attend.
And you're on holiday with family and friends.
Weddings are such a stress. Even my own tbh. grin

Threalamandaclarke Thu 03-Oct-13 07:06:49

freewee if you can make it your family holiday that's great.
Moan away.

Bearbehind Thu 03-Oct-13 09:36:35

I think the fact they asked your DH to be Best Man then decided the wedding was to be abroad 'is not in the spirit of things'

They are totally taking the piss IMO. Fair enough if they asked him to be best man, changed the venue to being abroad but offered to pay for you all to attend but it is a pretty low shot to effectively hold you to ransom like they are doing now by making you feel obliged to pay for your attendance at their wedding.

It sounds like you've decided to suck it up which is your choice but personally I would be questioning just how good a friend who thinks it is acceptable to ask this of you all is, particularly when they presumably know your DH won't have been earning for a year.

I wouldn't be surprised if this is just the start of some pretty impressive Bridezilla behaviour. Any mention of a foreign Stag do yet..........?

Threalamandaclarke Thu 03-Oct-13 09:43:34

Yes bearbehind being best man at a local wedding is a different sort of commitment from being bm at an overseas wedding.
An overseas stag/ hen would infuriate me. grin
Freewee what does your DH think?

MissBattleaxe Thu 03-Oct-13 10:00:27


I think if the bride and groom want to get married abroad, then fine.

However, where it gets very tacky is when they pressure guests and family to go. That's massively unfair and does not take into account that people are being expected to use their annual family holiday budget up, or their annual leave, or that maybe only one of them can afford to go.

Being invited to a wedding is not an enormous privilege that must be met at any cost and it's more than OK to say, "sorry we can't make it but have a great day"

I just think the whole things ends up as a test of friendship and finance.

Get married abroad if you want, but don't expect all your guests to join you, and don't give them a hard time if they can't.

Kerosene Thu 03-Oct-13 10:20:04

My wedding next week is overseas. We wanted to be overseas as the location is special to us, and because of family issues (his dad died earlier and he doesn't have any other family bar his mum, my family is enormous and my grandmother really should be featured on the relationships>Stately Homes thread), we wanted to keep it as small as possible.

Absolutely no presents. Barring flights (£50, and half of the people coming would have had to fly to the UK anyway), the costs to guests are pretty much the same as a hotel wedding here. It's a weekend break, not a 2-week extravaganza with everyone we know. So nope, I don't think I'm passing any of my costs onto my guests. I've spent more going to a stately home wedding of a cousin than my dad is spending on attending mine.

FreeWee Thu 03-Oct-13 10:31:28

It did seem a bit cheeky that the 'invite' via text included how much the accommodation was quite apart from how much it'll cost to get there. But I guess they sweetened it with saying we were on the 'A' list for staying at the venue. DH is a bit nervous we'll need to make a decision quickly as he doesn't do quick decisions but also we can't stump up any cash immediately. He wants to go of course but does think it's slightly ridiculous they're doing it abroad as they originally wanted (in their words) a typically British wedding with afternoon tea etc. We thought this idea would be eventually discarded as the bride does have form for hair brained ideas. But they've booked it it would seem. It did make me chuckle when she was whinging on FB about the massive long return journey they were going to have to do went they went to check out the venue. I thought 'yep, and that's what you and all your guests will have to do next year' Thinking about it, if they've hired the venue and the rooms for exclusive use, shouldn't they be footing the bill for the best man and his family to stay? This is evidence of shifting the cost to the guests I feel.

The bride does have form for being bridezilla-y. She sent out a command message on FB to her MIL and bridesmaids basically summoning them to view yet another dress. Made me cringe anyway. She also has a blog. Lives her life on FB. Well enough bitching from me! Operation Start Sucking it Up needs to commence ASAP.

Bearbehind Thu 03-Oct-13 10:45:54

Sounds like 'Operation Start Sucking it Up' is going to be very hard work.

What a prize bitch the bride sounds.

I wouldn't be flattered at being on the 'a-list' I'm pretty sure that will extend as far is it needs to in order to make up the numbers.

You are quite right, if you hire a venue for your exclusive use, you should foot the bill. It would be very funny if everyone declined their 'text' invite (wtf?) and they ended up having to pay for the whole thing themselves or cancelling it.

I am a very strong believer in having the wedding you can afford and not expecting guests to foot the bill for your 'fur coat and no knickers' ideas.

Has the stag do been mentioned? As best man your husband will not be able to get out of that and if the groom has saved a load on his wedding costs (by getting the guests to subsidise it) he may well be wanting a huge stag weekend/ week somewhere, maybe abroad. Wouldn't that be the straw that broke the camels back if you can't really afford the wedding?

PasswordProtected Thu 03-Oct-13 11:37:59

I always thought that weddings abroad were the way to avoid having a "cast of thousands" and primarily only involved the couple getting married. I think it is very rude indeed to invite guests to a wedding abroad & expect them to pay for travel & accommodation in addition to having to take days off from work etc. Fine if the bride & groom invite & pay for everything, not at all fine otherwise.

CloverkissSparklecheeks Thu 03-Oct-13 13:01:05

We got married abroad but made it very clear we did not expect anyone to come. We paid for a reception in the UK afterwards. It wasn't just a money thing, it was due to comlicated family issues with DHs parents mainly.

We wanted to have a holiday with the children so combined a wedding/holiday, it therefore only cost about £5k more than just the holiday in the end including the recption at home.

I don't think anyone felt obliged to come, although 19 friends and family chose to. I would think anyone who arranged a wedding abroad and then expected people to go must be extremely selfish!

CloverkissSparklecheeks Thu 03-Oct-13 13:07:15

BTW we didn't send invites though, it was just people saying they wanted to join us.

Beastofburden Thu 03-Oct-13 13:07:34

Fine to get married abroad if you don't expect people to come, and won't sulk if they don't want to.

Otherwise not fine at all. Beyond selfish and arrogant to think that your friends are happy to shell out a fortune and use a shedload of their annual leave just to attend your big day.

Inertia Thu 03-Oct-13 13:27:21

Well, if you consider it unreasonable or cannot afford it , then don't go. We'll all have different opinions, but we're not invited to this wedding. My view is that if you get married abroad and won't pay for your guests then you have to be prepared to have just the bride and groom there, and you cannot justifiably get arsey when people can't come. If the bride and groom are from different countries then between them and their families they'll need to figure out the compromises.

The real cost isn't falling out with this couple- if they fall out with you because you cannot afford to pay for their extravagant wedding arrangements, then they aren't friends. Based on what you've said, the danger is that the real cost for you is your DH not being able to afford course fees or expenses, and that your household finances could be severely compromised if anything affects your income while DH is a student and you've maxed out your cc and spent your savings.

Personally I'd put future financial security ahead of going to a wedding that you're going to complain about anyway.

FreeWee Thu 03-Oct-13 18:33:45

Inertia I know what you mean although I am trying hard not to complain. I certainly won't ruin the wedding/ holiday as I'm sure I'll have got it out of my system by then.

Contrastingly the groom is very low maintenance like my DH. All he wants to do is go camping in the UK. Which is a bit too back to nature for my DH who'd rather they static caravanned it instead so he gets a bed, a shower and a fry up in the morning! Goodness knows what the hen do will involve but I guess I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.

My feeling about the bride is she has big ideas but never follows through on things. Her and her STBDH offered to do up a relative's house if they lived there rent free and shared in the profit. Was win-win for both as it had lain empty for ages. Started a blog about doing that up. Ripped it apart but never got round to improving it. Then moved out. She's nice enough but does come across as quite inward looking and doesn't think about the impact on others. She admits she's high maintenance about her STBDH. Until about a month ago she would plead with him on FB to come home to do the washing up so she could make a cup of tea or dinner. Her response when people said 'Er have your hands fallen off?' Was "I don't DO washing up". I think enough people told her to man up she started doing it.

I think she's a bit of a dreamer who's dreaming about her dream wedding. But is not particularly going about it in the right way. You're allowed to be selfish when it's your wedding but not at any price. Especially one being paid by your friends. Yes we are concerned about paying £9k tuition fees and a foreign holiday. We've not had one this year and wouldn't next year except for this. It's difficult too because if we want to stay at the venue I have a feeling it's for the full week or not at all. It is literally in the middle of nowhere which attracted them. With an 18 month old? Not much fun. So do we book for the whole week and suck up the cost despite actually staying somewhere else except for the night before and after the wedding? Or do we book somewhere else for the week before then a nearby (but not the venue) place for the night before and after? My worry with the latter is it's in the middle of nowhere so unlikely to be nearby places. But will have to do my research before knocking that idea on the head totally. DH is worried they won't give us time to scope out what's best for us. Will broach the idea with DH tonight that perhaps they should be paying for our accommodation given a) he's best man b) it's abroad so we'll be paying travel costs c) they'll have exclusive use anyway so are they trying to cover the cost through their guests? Which was my initial AIBU thought.

kitsmummy Thu 03-Oct-13 18:46:42

Honestly, don't bloody go! I would have no qualms about turning this wedding down (even if DH was best man) as this is not what he signed up to when he first agree to be best man.

Given your financial circumstances, do not go if you can't afford it. And if you can afford it, have a holiday of your choosing instead! Besides, the bride sounds a total tit grin.

You realise if you go for a week beforehand and stay at a different venue, it's probably going to cause WW3!

expatinscotland Thu 03-Oct-13 18:53:53

You say, 'NO, I can't afford it. I have a family now.' Very, very easy.

HighJinx Thu 03-Oct-13 19:15:50

I wouldn't go. This is beyond what I would consider reasonable to ask someone to fit in for a wedding. Shelling out money you don't have to travel somewhere you don't want to go to and then being expected to pay for accommodation for a week? Just no.

I would be angry that someone thought it was reasonable to even suggest that tbh.

maddening Thu 03-Oct-13 19:19:50

I think the people they want in the wedding party should be paid for by the bride and groom - or they could invite first and choose wedding party out of those able to travel abroad for their wedding.

FreeWee Thu 03-Oct-13 19:28:44

I'm afraid despite my grumblings we will be going. I just have to work out how to make the most of it. I think broaching them paying our accommodation costs has been great advice from this thread so thank you. Is it drip feeding if I say the groom was best man at our wedding and has known my DH since primary school? DH would rather die than we not go. They're that close. He's caught between a rock and a hard place really.

expatinscotland Thu 03-Oct-13 19:33:10

' DH would rather die than we not go. They're that close. He's caught between a rock and a hard place really.'

No, he's not. When you don't have the money, you don't have it. And when you're that close, you can be honest and upfront, 'Sorry, but I can't afford to go out there.'

Threalamandaclarke Thu 03-Oct-13 19:40:25

So you can afford it?
But you're (understandably) a bit miffed at having to spend so much money and holiday time to go to a wedding.

bigknickersforthepicker Thu 03-Oct-13 19:51:37

if it is a case of get married abroad or don't do it at all, the couple should opt for the latter every time if their guests can't afford to attend.

Not sure when weddings became about guests?
Its an invitation, bot a demand. Don't go if you can't afford it, it'll be a consideration they will have already made.

Jeez im glad im not inviting anyone to mine now.

Xmasbaby11 Thu 03-Oct-13 19:58:16

YANBU. We would never have got married abroad for that reason precisely. Close family and friends would have found the money (and time) to come, possibly, but I think it's asking too much. It's normal to consider your guests when you plan a wedding, assuming you actually want them to come.

Of course it does depend on the reason, but in my eyes, couples who get married abroad do so because they don't actually want any guests (apart from v tiny group).

Bearbehind Thu 03-Oct-13 20:00:35

I should have phrased that better bigknickers (love that name btw), what I meant was that if you expect guests to attend, you shouldn't chose a venue they can't afford to go to. If you want to get married alone, which at the end of the day is the only part of the wedding that really matters, you can go wherever you please.

OP your DH really should be able to tell his childhood friend that he can't afford to go along with these plans if your really will have to struggle to pay for it.

TBH it sounds entirely likely this wedding might not even take place at all- stranger things have happened. The bride sounds a complete diva and the groom sounds a bit of a gutless wonder but he might just man up before it is too late.

CrapBag Thu 03-Oct-13 20:21:24

Actually OP I think YANBU.

I hate weddings abroad because ultimately, the bride and groom are expecting some people to pay to attend (I know this isn't all, but there are many who are).

I have a family member who wants to get married abroad. Wants my child to be in the wedding party and is looking at packages where the wedding price includes x amount of guests. I asked if my child will be included in these guests seeing as they are wanted to take part and I was told no.

I have been given x amount of years to save and apparently its "not too expensive" hmm.

Seeing as I am on benefits, I won't be taking x amount of years to save and I won't be going. But the people that the bride and groom really do give a toss about will all pay to go (its thousands of miles and not somewhere we could try and incorporate a family holiday either which is another reason I won't consider it). The people who can't or won't pay, well I suspect the bride and groom won't be particularly bothered anyway.

Pigsmummy Thu 03-Oct-13 21:03:43

My sister openly says that she got married abroad to save money, it cost £1000 to attended before spends etc I thinks it cost me about £1800

Pigsmummy Thu 03-Oct-13 21:04:27

Btw she also got married in a country that had no special meaning to either of them.

Honestly, I'm a bit shock that people expect the B&G to pay for you to attend their weddings... It is a privilege to attend; you're being invited because you're one of their closest friends or family members. If you don't want to go, then don't bloody go, but I don't understand the vitriol that is directed at weddings on here! Yes, some are OTT, and some can be a bit expensive, but as another poster mentioned, it's an invite, not a summons.

OP, if you're going to go, go, and have fun whilst you're there. No reason to spend the money and be miserable.

WidowWadman Thu 03-Oct-13 21:29:08

I got married abroad - seing as we're a bi-national couple, it always meant that half the party had to travel, there was no way around it. We chose the country in which it was more affordable to offer a free bar.

Inertia Thu 03-Oct-13 21:59:52

Sorry, I'm coming over as harsh here FreeWee, but honestly- your DH would rather DIE than not attend a wedding? He would rather leave a toddler fatherless and a wife grieving than miss a wedding he has to pay a fortune to attend? A wedding where the groom doesn't think enough of him to reduce the enforced accommodation cost? Dramatic, much?

Why is it a whole week or not at all? Surely it's possible to go for the wedding and a day either side.

And you genuinely are allowed to say 'no, we cannot afford to subsidise your dream wedding' if that's the case. If you can afford it then go. If it's truly a financial struggle, then you really do owe it to your child to be financially sensible. You owe nothing to a bride who wants you to pay for her princess wedding in fairyland.

Your DH could always skype in his best man turn...

Reginald, the "vitriol" is aimed at the bridezilla types for whom the invitation IS a summons. The ones who have a tantrum when guests quite reasonably begin saying that they can't afford to go/can't get leave.

NOT at the level-headed, reasonable types like my lovely friend who got married abroad last year (her dh was from there). I explained to her that I pay for our family holidays and trips away and had promised the kids that we would go to a particular place abroad for a family holiday and therefore I wouldn't have the spare cash to attend her wedding as well. Also thrown into the mix in the same year was my 40th - I had planned to do a European city break with my mum, and a trip to London to see my auntie who is in poor health and not able to come to us to see the kids. All these things cost money. In our house, dh's salary pays all the household essentials like mortgage and bills and my meagre one pays for the luxuries like weekends away and trips abroad. And let's face it, these things are a luxury, something which people with plenty of disposable income with no kids seem to forget.

Anyway....I wasn't able to go to my friend's wedding, even though the 4 of us were invited and had we had spare cash then we would have gone AS WELL as go on our planned family holiday. I explained all that to her and she totally understood. She is a lovely person and certainly no bridezilla. Ordinary hen night that was entirely affordable. Etc

mikkii Thu 03-Oct-13 22:51:18

We chose to get married abroad. When we got married DH was Catholic, I was not. I attended church regularly, he did not.

As soon as we made our plans to marry public certain people started laying down the law about what we could and couldn't do (not our parents BTW)

We wanted to marry in Dh's hometown, but his parents were reluctant, they wanted us to marry in the UK.

We looked at venues and prices near where we live and were horrified. We found somewhere in Australia that we liked and booked it. We issued an open invitation.

In the end it was just us and both sets of parents. When we got back, we had a huge party on a boat with all our friends and relatives.

All this, including a month away cost us (note, us, not our parents)less than just the wedding and reception here would have cost, and we had 4 weeks in nice hotels in Australia too)

vichill Thu 03-Oct-13 23:11:25

I wouldn't go unless they paid. They want an extravagant wedding but are unwilling to pick up the bill. I dont know how it became socially acceptable to ask your guests to fork out circa £1000 each to watch you get married. Unbelievably crass and egotistical, especially when you consider that often wedding packages offer free places for the bride and groom or some other incentive if you get a minimum number of people to book. I find that really depressing and very far removed from the true meaning of marriage.

FreeWee Thu 03-Oct-13 23:54:30

I guess I'm quite unusual on this thread and on this board in that I don't mind being told I'm BU. There really is a fairly even mix of views which shows it's not clear cut. I may have over exaggerated with the 'rather die' comment but DH does truly hate confrontation.

I've broached it with him and apparently there was an off the cuff remark when he said we probably wouldn't stay for the week because of our DD (it not being much of a place for her) that potentially we could stay for 3 days instead. That might help with keeping costs down. However DH has agreed to broach the subject of our finances for the next year with them when he says we definitely can't pay anything till next year when I'm back at work. He'll plant some seeds about us having no income till then and him having none till September. And softly softly catchee monkey till they get the hint. Yep it'll take a while but that is how he plays things non confrontationally.

Do we have money in the bank we could spend on this holiday yes so in that sense we aren't totally skint. But it really is our life savings tied up in ISAS that we'd need to tap into and we're already using it for day to day living expenses like the utility bills. We'll spend £1500 a month on just keeping a roof over our heads and food on the table. That almost wipes out my entire ISA. Then his fees are £9k and we get a third paid so £6k to pay by July. That almost wipes out his ISA (less than £1k left in each)

So could do with not having the cost shifted onto us which is what it feels like. Don't want to play the 'I'm poorer than you' game but they're choosing to spend this money how they want. We're not!

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 06:29:34

I wouldn't expect the B&GS to pay for guests to attend an overseas wedding. And you might have a great time. So much depends on your approach at the start.
"oh great. We have an excuse to go to [destination] for a holiday before we have to pay full price for weefreewee" or "omg. We're being forced to take our holiday with these ppl on their bloody honeymoon"
My db married overseas. It was lovely. We had a great time and made a break of it. But it definitely is a way of reducing costs to B&G whilst getting an idyllic destination/ venue, and this costs guests more than a wedding at home.

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 06:35:52

X post. Just read your last post.
IMHO you should decline. Don't have him fart about making subtle hints. It's not reasonable for them to pay unless they're phenomenally wealthy and it's not reasonable for you spend that much money on someone else's wedding. Just say "I'm sorry, we can't afford to do that. We won't be able to come. It looks beautiful and we can't wait to see the photos over a drink when you return" or some such.
Done. You'll feel so much better.

Inertia Fri 04-Oct-13 06:36:12

So really the money that you would need to spend is already allocated for course fees and living expenses, so you don't have it available to spend. Even just travel and food costs will be hundreds of pounds.

Still, it's up to you and dh. It's your money. I agree with you in disliking the general idea of marrying abroad to pass costs to guests, but I would always argue that nobody else has to go.

NotYoMomma Fri 04-Oct-13 06:54:26

my bil's New gf told us that we best get saving for their (as yet unbooked) wedding as it will be abroad and expensive.

they are in huge amount of debt and it 'may be 5 years away'

ive already told dh we arent going and he agrees. we have 2 dc who I wouldnt leave and I cant afford it. I am saving for a holiday in thefuture but I'd be damned if I am spending our first ever family hol in a destination of their choosing and it being all about them.

just the arrogance of her she actually said 'you best get saving if you want to come to my wedding' I scoffed. savings, you owe mil 5k!

FreeWee Fri 04-Oct-13 06:58:30

therealamandaclarke if it was somewhere we wanted to go on holiday that would help but next year because of the circumstances we wouldn't have gone on holiday anywhere abroad for cost reasons. My friend's parents have a place in Wales they let to friends and family at a very cheap rate or my sister's MIL has a static caravan in Norfolk which we could borrow for virtually nothing. These are the kinds of holidays we're considering for next year.

I see what you're saying that it's not reasonable either way which is the theme I'm getting from the thread. It is already allocated inertia and my part time wages when I go back will just cover our day to day expenses that's why I'm going back more hours than I'd like because we've done the sums and that's what I need to earn to cover our bills for the time my DH isn't working. My DH agrees with making it clear to them we haven't got any money right now and if they don't offer to pay accommodation when that's made clear to them then we'll have to have a Plan B because including flights it's going to be near on £1000 before spending money and actual accommodation somewhere we want to be. That would totally wipe out our savings.

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 07:10:53

I am feeling stressed now.
I usually avoid this kind of comment, please don't be offended, but your DH needs to sort this out and stop arseing about. They are not going to pay for your accommodation and definitely not for your flights. Asking them to do so could lead to such embarrassment.
Fwiw my DH has no issues with confrontation. He's polite but never afraid to be honest. It is both a blessing and a curse. Sometimes I could cheerfully throttle him for his candour grin but in this situation such directness is needed and I am so grateful he would just tell them how it is. Please try to help him be clear with his friend.

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 07:12:02

Wales sounds great btw. Perfect family hols destination.

FreeWee Fri 04-Oct-13 07:12:21

I've just been online and looked at the venue. To hire in high season is € X and it can take 10 people in 5 rooms. The amount we're being asked to pay per person almost exactly covers 50% of X. I feel vindicated by my original post that they are passing on the venue hire costs to us. sad I really hoped I was wrong but it seems the bride really is clueless about what is reasonable. I think the cost for everyone else may seem OK because it's family and they'll probably want to spend the week together anyway. And they're all comfortably well off. In any other year it'd probably be OK for us but then with DD we'd still have wanted to be somewhere else for the proceeding week. I think perhaps they just haven't thought things are different for us this year.

chrome100 Fri 04-Oct-13 07:13:30

I am skint. I can't afford a holiday abroad never mind someone else's wedding in a place I probably don't want to go anyway There's no way I'd ever go to a wedding abroad

FreeWee Fri 04-Oct-13 07:14:20

I will try therealamandaclarke I really will. But that's his natural approach so changing it won't be straightforward.

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 07:19:14

Well that's even more of a problem.
I think it's really important here just to be clear with them that you can't afford to go. Trying to be subtle is not going to help. What if they say "oh ok. Just pay € <x then and we"ll sort the rest" it's still going to cost loads of money and you're going to be pissed off.

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 07:22:12

Oh I know. I was trying to imagine getting my dh to use the subtle approach grin.
All you can do is be clear with him. Model the behaviour you need to see and don't get caught up in making negative comments about his friend or the bride as it could make him defensive.

TenaciousOne Fri 04-Oct-13 08:18:06

We got married abroad but didn't invite anyone except my family who lived in the country we were getting married in. I was over the moon when my best friend said she was coming, genuinely didn't expect any friends to come due to expensive and time. We then had a celebration when we got back. None of DH's family came to either, money was not an issue I'm sure it was a statement but really don't care.

CerealMom Fri 04-Oct-13 08:59:29

As your DH and his friend have been friends since primary, then DH should be able to have this conversation with him. Go out for a drink, have the conversation. "Sorry mate, I agreed when I thought the wedding would be in the uk. We just don't have the money at the moment for an abroad trip. I hope you understand".

You say this will wipe out savings. Think about the what if's - what if the car needs fixing. What if I get made redundant. What if mortgage rate moves/repairs on house etc etc etc... Stupid stuff like dental work not covered by NHS, new washer/dryer, it happens.

You'll be spending the year leading up to this worried about money and the day/week resenting every penny spent.

And to text you this - lazy invite and easier for them to get away with a very cheeky request.

Op, if your DH won't talk straight with his friend, can you do it (the straight talking)?
I think you would be made to go given your financial situation.

Oops - meant would be 'mad' to go, not 'made' to go..

post Fri 04-Oct-13 09:23:11

I had 2 friends marry in a European country, as that's where one of them was from, and they

Booked out a big youth hostel type place with a hall attached so all the English guests could stay there, paid for by the b&g, and the reception was there. It was simple, and we all mucked in with helping with setting out tables and chairs, breakfast etc, although the had caterers for the evening meal
Booked a coach from the airport to the reception venue, and from the venue to the registry office so that we all travelled together, again paid by them

Our only cost was the easy jet flight, and they arranged that everyone knew which flight to get so about 30 of us got the same flight
They did ask, IF anyone wanted to give a gift, for a contribution to the honeymoon, and under the circumstances I was very grateful to be able to pay them something for an amazing, affordable, weekend away with loads of my dearest friends.
They couldn't have been more generous and considerate. It wasn't a posh 'dream venue', but it was one of the best weddings/ parties/ times ever.

ZingWantsCake Fri 04-Oct-13 09:26:56

we got married in Hungary because I'm Hungarian.

I the best man had said he couldn't go due to costs DH would have chosen someone else.

you don't have to go you know

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 09:32:40

The thing is, different events are attractive to us at different times of our life.
When dh and I were young DINKIS the idea of a wedding in Europe would have been great. Fun, excuse for a minibreak etc... But now we have 2 small DCs and zero childcare even an overnight in the uk is too much for us to manage.
When ppl a planning their wedding, especially if they don't have any kids, it's just that they often don't think about all that. They don't have to. That's our/ your responsibility. Don't get cross with them for asking, just be upfront about not being able to/ wanting to go.

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 09:34:04

So awkward Zing grin

Bearbehind Fri 04-Oct-13 09:34:20

OP, this bridezilla really is taking the piss here.

I get the impression the groom is just going with the flow for an easy life so he is unlikely to be unreasonable if your DH tells him you can't attend due to finances and he really should tell him.

The coup,e have moved the goalposts by changing from a UK wedding to a ceremony abroad, so you are entirely justified in saying you just can't do it now.

I do think they should pay for you to attend. I know others disagree but I believe that if you have a wedding somewhere that the majority of people can get to easily and where there is a choice of accommodation in various price brackets, then it's fair enough to expect people to pay for themselves.

As soon as you go down the route if hiring a venue for exclusive use, ie there is a fee to pay and your fee will be reduced if others contribute, then you are totally abusing your friends good nature. In that situation I think you foot the bill or choose another destination.

You would be insane to use all your spare cash on this wedding and it will likely taint the friendship anyway. As you said, it's not how you want to spend that money and that will be pretty hard to ignore.

Not paying anything in the foreseeable future is a good plan whatever you decide to do as it does seem to me to be quite probable that this wedding might not even happen. Losing the money completely if their plans changed would be the ultimate insult.

ZingWantsCake Fri 04-Oct-13 09:44:20

what's awkward Ams? <waves>

elQuintoConyo Fri 04-Oct-13 10:07:10

Decline. Decline. Decline.
And move on.

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 10:25:20

I was joking Zing blush

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 10:26:33

You know, awkward what wirh you being forrin. grin blush

ZingWantsCake Fri 04-Oct-13 10:35:15


<contacts the Initiative to eliminate someone>


MissBattleaxe Fri 04-Oct-13 12:21:57

"Sorry mate, I agreed when I thought the wedding would be in the uk. We just don't have the money at the moment for an abroad trip. I hope you understand".

What Cereal Mon said^^

If the Groom is such a good friend he would understand.

It sounds like the bridezilla is a spoilt bully who will play hell if she doesn't get her own way. She always will be if people keep trying to please her.

This is not your job. You don't have the money. You can't go. Keep your ISA for family emergencies. Your DH will just have to feel bad for a bit and that's that.

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 12:37:27

zing it's been toooooo long!

FreeWee Fri 04-Oct-13 13:06:33

All fair points so thank you. The bit about us paying which ultimately reduces other people's cost for me seems to be the crux of my AIBU. I feel we're subbing the b&g at a time we can't afford to do it. It would be bloody cheeky at any other time DINKys or otherwise but at least affordable. They are DINKys so don't appreciate the time of our life when our DD is our number 1 priority and paying for us to have a roof over our heads and food on our table is a real issue.

post your wedding example obviously left a lot of goodwill as not only did you give them a gift, you posted on a forum to tell people how well you thought it had been handled. I'm posting to say how badly I think this is currently being handled. DH and I have agreed not to hand over any money till I go back to work which buys us time. We are going to propose the 3 night stay to let them know we won't be there the whole week (whether they were paying or not) and then over the next few months till I go back to work DH will subtly (I know sorry therealamandaclarke!) suggest they could pay for our room in lieu of perhaps a gift to the best man or just generally to help a very good friend who is currently not able to afford it. I do know the bride relatively well and so at the next opportunity will let her know that them having a wedding abroad next year isn't great timing for us. That's not their fault, that's just life. But if they could swallow our accommodation costs into their venue hire budget then it would be appreciated. In the meantime over a beer my DH will tell the groom that being a student with not only no income for a year but also having to pay £6k in fees whilst his wife is on maternity leave is leaving us pretty hard up. That even when I go back to work we will only be covering the essential bills and hopefully not still eating into our savings. We will not be building up savings to pay for a holiday abroad and so any outgoings for that will be coming out of savings already depleted between now and going back to work. If THAT doesn't make it clear that us paying for our own accommodation is a cheque too far then I will spell it out to the bride in black and white. She really is oblivious although I personally don't see her as a bridezilla because she's like this not just when planning a wedding. She's genuinely not a bad person but thinks of herself more than others. Next summer is just the killer time for us to be paying out a big chunk of money and I'm sure I can make her see that given time.

theoriginalandbestrookie Fri 04-Oct-13 13:13:51

YANBU. It's a bloody imposition to ask your mate to be Best Man then lumber him with a cost of thousands.

Now is not the time for your DH to play softly, softly catchee monkey. His pal will probably just think he is hinting for a free beer, rather than talking about the wedding.

You can't ask for your room to be paid for, that's even worse etiquette than having the wedding abroad in the first place.

Bottom line is your family is in no position for any of you to be going to a wedding abroad. If your DH is unable to discuss it directly with the groom-to-be then it falls to you to talk to the bride. I'd leave out all the back story and why you can't afford it, the simple fact is that much as you would love to be there, you simply can't and your DH is worried about letting his friend down.

meganorks Fri 04-Oct-13 13:15:45

I sort of get where you are coming from as I have often heard people saying 'oh it was cheaper to get married abroad'. What they mean is they couldn't afford the wedding they wanted at home with all the friends and relatives they feel they need to invite. But obviously it is much much more expensive for the guests. So if I heard them saying that in front of me I would think they had a bit of a cheek!

CuChullain Fri 04-Oct-13 13:24:51

I am getting married in the south of Italy next year. There are several reasons for this:

My folks have lived in the village we have chosen for over 20 years

It is a beautiful 15th century setting

The weather is virtually guaranteed to be sunny

A stunning four course menu has been put together at cost of about 25 euro a head

The cost of wine is a faction of what it is in the UK

Cost of accommodation is very reasonable compared to the UK

Its a bit of a fuck you to the crippling cost of the UK wedding industry

Fringe family members (some cousins and uncles) who never bother to return calls or get in touch normally but who usually show up to such events and drink the bar dry without even saying hello will not bother getting on a plane

Plenty of other activities and sights for guests to see/do outside of the wedding day.

Downsides being:

Guests will have to fork out on flights and accomodation although we are providing transfers from the airport.

Beastofburden Fri 04-Oct-13 13:32:15

Chu don't you feel a bit guilty expecting your guests to pay out so much? if you had to pay for their flights it wouldnt be cheaper.

You might as well have a UK wedding and charge people £250 a head entry fee hmm

Bearbehind Fri 04-Oct-13 13:35:01

I agree that you can't actually ask them to pay for your room, they absolutely should have offered and should not have texted you the costs but asking them to pay is also pretty bad form.

Just tell them you can't afford it, if they offer to pay then great, if they don't you know where you stand. It's not exactly a secret that things are tight if you are on maternity leave and DH is studying- they are being incredibly thoughtless to not see that.

Bearbehind Fri 04-Oct-13 13:38:51

That epitomises the poor attitude of some couples in my opinion Guests will have to fork out on flights and accommodation

Why is that acceptable? It's your wedding day, people want to share your big day with you but that shoud not mean they have to spend a fortune doing it.

Hulababy Fri 04-Oct-13 13:39:51

I got married abroad.
We told people we were going to so such that and booked. They could have come if they wish, but we didn't send out any formal invites or ask people to come. Infact, it was just me and DH who went. It was a lovely intimate service, just as we wanted. It cost nobody aything, bar me and DH. We had a blessing and party on return and invited family and friends.

My sister also married abroad. Again - no formal invites, though again it was known to be a general invite if anyone could/wanted to come. We did go, along with DD who was a bridesmaid. My parents also went, as did my brother and some of their friends. BIL's family chose not to come. It cost us a lot of money to attend but it was entirely our own choice and there was no pressure put on us. Again there was a party for family and friends on return.

Bearbehind Fri 04-Oct-13 13:47:27

hulababy both those weddings sound perfect. I can totally see that marrying abroad is a great idea for some couples, particularly if you have complicated family situations, but guests should not feel pressured to attend.

Texting someone the costs of attending your wedding (which actually turns out to be 50% of the total cost of the venue hire) and just assuming they'll happily pay it, even when you know things must be tight for them, is lower than a snakes belly IMO.

CuChullain Fri 04-Oct-13 13:49:45


Not really, without wanting to sound smug all the family and guests are in a position of affordability. Most have already been to the place already on seperate holidays and love itl, in fact we were actively being encouraged to have it there as people are tagging their summer holidays on the end of the wedding. The invites went out almost a year in advance so people could get cheap flights and we know most of hotel owners already who have put on a discount rate. Of course it still involves guests to put their hands in their pockets but it is not costing £000s. It is not a huge ceremony, only about 40 people.

Obviously, if we suspected that cost would be an issue for the most people we would not have organised it there but we have been reassured that this is not the case.

CuChullain Fri 04-Oct-13 13:52:52


"That epitomises the poor attitude of some couples in my opinion Guests will have to fork out on flights and accommodation"

Its a figure of speech Bear, people dont have to do anything, its an invite not a court summons.

Beastofburden Fri 04-Oct-13 13:53:42

chu that sounds fine then- and have a great time

I am sure you agree that where there is a problem, as with the OP, then it's unfair of the bride and groom to stick their head in the sand and pretend it will go away?

Bearbehind Fri 04-Oct-13 13:55:17

Fair enough chu your follow up post does makes it sound lovely and it's clear you haven't expected loads of people to do things they can't afford to do smile

MissBattleaxe Fri 04-Oct-13 14:23:12

OP- I think you're approach is too indirect.

You just need to say you can't afford it. The money 's not there. I don't think dropping hints is going to work.

I still think it's a shame when people get married abroad. It's a little bit like saying you can't come if you haven't got childcare/lots of spare money/ passports/spare annual leave.

Having said that, it is a B&G's prerogative to go off and elope and I do think it's lovely if they throw a little party for the non attendees when they get back.

MinesAPintOfTea Fri 04-Oct-13 15:11:58

Angel people rarely come onto MN and ask how they should respond to a generous, sensible wedding invite. They come to ask for help in how to handle the most demanding of invites which they rally don't want to accept.

Op you woks not be unreasonable in declining on financial grounds. Your dh could say that he had a budget of x (a bit less than you can afford) to come to the wedding and whilst a local wedding would have been fine he can't afford a foreign one.

There are two reasonable types if foreign weddings: the ones when you want it to just be the two of you (like my fil's second wedding next year) or where one part is from a different country in which case few guests from the side that have to travel will be expected, but the couple can't not force half the invited guests to travel.

Expectations of a massive group of british family and friends travelling thousands of miles on their own expense are unreasonable.

expatinscotland Fri 04-Oct-13 15:14:44

Stop pussyfooting around, Free. How silly! If your DH is too much of a wet girl's blouse to say it directly, then you do. 'We can't afford to go to wedding.'

BackforGood Fri 04-Oct-13 15:28:04

I agree with MissBattleAxe and Expat - If I were you OP, I would assume that 'hints' are not going to be heard.
Ideally, your dh needs to speak to groom as suggested ^ "Sorry mate, when I agreed to be Best Man, I assumed the wedding was in the UK. We just don't have the money to be spending a week abroad next year. Sorry, if the wedding is abroad then I'm going to have to step down"
If he won't, and it were me, then I'd say it that clearly now.

BeScarefulWhatYouWitchFor Fri 04-Oct-13 16:05:34

Tbh OP I think if you go down the hinting/subtle route before saying you can't afford it you're being unfair to the bride and groom. At least if you're upfront from the start it gives them time to decide if they want to pay for you to go or choose another bm.

I haven't a problem with weddings abroad or weddings in general, as I can always decline. I think people sometimes this is an option grin

We were invited to 2 this year, both in Mexico. We went for one & I was happy to be there & didn't mind the cost. Especially as they'd sent out their "Save the Dates" 1.5yrs in advance = loads of time to plan for it.

Other friend, sent out her "Save The Dates" in January for a wedding in June hmm. Obviously, I didn't go and neither did any of our mutual friends. She was a bit hurt I understand, but it was rather stupid of her to leave it so late.

I think people sometimes *forget this is an option.

You really need to forget the idea of dropping hints and just tell them straight - if dh doesn't want to do it then can't you take his mate aside or send him a text and just say "dh is gutted as he has realised our finances are not going to stretch to a trip abroad next year so he won't be able to be your best man. He is a bit worried about telling you as he thought you would be hurt but I told him you would be more hurt at the thought of us having to get into debt to attend your wedding."

MissBattleaxe Fri 04-Oct-13 17:52:35

OP what are you afraid of? The Bride and groom being offended or going into huge debt to appease them?

FreeWee Fri 04-Oct-13 18:00:41

I like all your suggestions so will try and employ as many as possible given the wetness of my DH grin I'm not taking that as an insult BTW cos it is true in many ways with his anti confrontation stance. Or let's call it assertiveness. The bride has bags of this; my DH doesn't so is easily steamrollered.

It reminds me actually DH and I had a massive argument a while back because we were all (me, DH and b&g) invited to stay over at a friends' house. We got in first and asked to have the bed and they would sleep on a double mattress in the living room. Bride kicked up a fuss via her STBDH with my DH that she has a phobia of sleeping not in a bedroom (WTAF? Convenient hmm ) so we had to sleep on the floor. I actually don't mind where we sleep but they stay up later than us so we had to wait till everyone had finished chatting and left the living room before we could go to bed (well I got into my pjs and they got the hint!) Fast forward a few years and she tries to pull the same stunt at a different friends' house when I was 5 months pregnant. On that occasion I manned up and told her she could either not drink and drive home or sleep in the living room. Guess what? She slept in the living room upon finding a taxi would cost £40. Amazing isn't it?

So she's not afraid to get her own way. I'll have to think hard about how we can make it clear we can't afford to come without telling her she needs to pay or making her feel emotionally blackmailed. I want her and her STBDH to have the wedding of their dreams but not at our expense. It feels a bit grubby that they're passing on 50% of the venue hire costs to their 8 closest family and friends couples...

expatinscotland Fri 04-Oct-13 18:04:22

Just fucking say NO. Say what CurlyHairedAssasin said and be DONE with it. Why on Earth are you pussyfooting around? You can't afford it. They pay or they have plenty of time to find a new best man. No 'mate' is worth getting into debt for, especially not over a poxy wedding.

FreeWee Fri 04-Oct-13 18:08:50

I love your style expat! Perhaps you've got enough backbone to share with my DH? It's his absolute bestest best mate in the whole world. Just a shame he's marrying someone so blinkered to other people's reality. First step is to make her aware of our reality. Then the ball's in their court for how much DH being their best man means to them. It's purely bad timing from a DH not working for a year point of view and I'm hoping once the implications of that are explained they'll be more considerate. But weddings do often bring out the worst in brides and grooms as often seen on MN.

expatinscotland Fri 04-Oct-13 18:13:40

YOU have to do it, Free. FFS, you really want to get into debt over a poxy wedding? If a best mate doesn't understand, it's not a good mate.

What Curly said. Text him that and be DONE with it. Don't beat round the bush.

MissBattleaxe Fri 04-Oct-13 18:52:04

First step is to make her aware of our reality. Then the ball's in their court for how much DH being their best man means to them.

If they haven't figured out that your DH is not working and you're on Mat leave then I doubt that leaving hints and waiting for them to sink in is going to work.

Cut to the chase. You can't afford it. say so now. You could deal with this tonight in two sentences.

TBH if I found out a so called friend was trying to screw me for half the cost of their overseas wedding when I had kids and no income coming in then I would think they were a total bastard and would stick my Fascinator where the sun don't shine.

Bearbehind Fri 04-Oct-13 19:16:25

Yay! Good luck OP! Make sure you tell them sooner rather than later.

It's simple- your DH must decline being best man purely on financial grounds. A wedding in the UK was fine, a wedding abroad is out of your financial reach currently.

There's no emotional blackmail if you just decline- asking them to pay would be emotional blackmail.

If they really want you to be part of their day they will make the sacrifice of paying your costs, which it sounds like they could afford, if they don't then so be it.

I predict that diva bride will kick off and no offer to pay will be made as it will reduce her 'bling' budget but your husband and his mate will be fine as they are both much more level headed so there's nothing to worry about.

Tavv Fri 04-Oct-13 20:24:37

> because the bride and groom can't afford a wedding in the UK apparently

How is going abroad for a wedding any cheaper than a simple wedding in the UK? confused

FreeWee Fri 04-Oct-13 20:54:06

Tavv because it's easier to pass on the costs to your guests grin

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 21:05:15

It sounds like you (or your DH) really want to go to this wedding and so are hanging out for the possibility that the B&G will pay for your accommodation. Isn't that goin to be really awkward? And still going to land you in debt with your flights? I didn't go into debt for my own wedding. Definitely wouldn't do it for someone else's.
I can't bear it. It all sounds so awkward and stressful.
I wish you well with this. I could lend you DH for the negotiations if you like. grin
Keep focused on what you want to achieve.

ZingWantsCake Fri 04-Oct-13 21:07:03


but the couple wouldn't presumably pay for guests travel and accommodation expenses in the UK, would they?
or for those who would travel to UK from another country?

how is that passing cost of wedding on? did I miss something?

Bearbehind Fri 04-Oct-13 21:10:51

Have you read the thread zing? Bridezila has specified the cost per couple and it's more than OP and her family had anticipated spending on attending this wedding.

It doesn't take a genius to work out that travelling somewhere abroad for a week will cost more than a potentially local wedding with a taxi home confused

ZingWantsCake Fri 04-Oct-13 21:11:36

in fact I have been to weddings in UK, Hungary, Holland, Germany and Belgium, several times - not once did the newlyweds pay for our trips or hotel!confused

we fucked that up big time, didn't we?grin

<writes emails and sends receipt to all involved. rubs hands at prospect of thousands of pounds arriving shirtly in bank account>

ZingWantsCake Fri 04-Oct-13 21:14:02

not all of it, just the last few posts every time I refreshed thread.

I might now. Although I do need dinner while watching Fraiser...I have a feeling I'd just get annoyed otherwise unnecessarily. wink

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 21:14:36

Zing OP was being asked to pay an amount that would cover half the accommodation costs whilst using only a fifth of the accommodation.
I think.

But even if that weren't the case it seems like it's too expensive.
It's really ok to decline. I think ppl expect it for an overseas wedding.

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 21:17:55

Ah you won't get annoyed Zing
You're right. It's not customary for B&G to pay for guests' accommodation. But it's more expensive for guests to attend overseas.

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 21:19:10

I need to go to bed though. Must get my 45 minutes grin

ZingWantsCake Fri 04-Oct-13 21:22:38

thanks Ams

that is an odd arrangement.

sleep well, dream of Nolan!grin

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 21:41:27


expatinscotland Fri 04-Oct-13 21:54:43

We had to do that with ex h's brother. His wife was totally minted and all their friends. And they chose to have this wedding on some compound abroad where you had to stay on that compound or it was dangerous.

We had just bought a house and were working flat out to pay off his student loan debt as one of our cars (in a foreign country where you needed two cars) was about to blow. We would need to get a car loan soon enough.

This thing was a fucking fortune.

Ex h hemmed and hawed. I told him, 'We can just afford the flights,' (oh, yes, they had it over Thanksgiving week/weekend when the cost of travel was through the fecking roof), but we literally can't afford to stay there.

You tell them or me.

So he told his brother. Who shrugged and said, 'No problem. I'll tell future FIL).' The man owned several apartments on the compound and was like, 'Why didn't you say. Here, have an apartment.'

We'd have got thousands in debt for pride.

Fuck that!

FreeWee Fri 04-Oct-13 22:15:05

Apologies to clarify. The venue costs (say for easy maths) £10k for exclusive hire for a week. It has 5 rooms so 10 people. Half of the venue hire cost (in this example £5k) has been split between the 5 rooms. So guests have been texted to say 'You're invited and on the A list for accommodation. It will cost £1k per couple. Please let us know if you want to stay there' (not direct cut and paste. Paraphrasing) So I've interpreted it as the b&g passing on costs to guests and wondering if I'm being unreasonable.

Threalamandaclarke Fri 04-Oct-13 22:29:16

Oh. £1k to stay there for how long?
Because that isn't the same as I read it earlier. And it means that the B&G are paying a further 5k for the actual wedding.
I'm not sure that's passing on the cost tbh. It's just that they want to get the bookings sorted so that ppl don't miss out.
But I still wouldn't go in your position.

theoriginalandbestrookie Fri 04-Oct-13 22:29:36

Everything about having a wedding abroad and automatically expecting that people will pay for flights to attend is unreasonable. The venue is just the icing on the cake.

Look OP just tell them you can't afford it.

Bearbehind Fri 04-Oct-13 23:20:53

I'm not sure I follow threal's logic on them not passing the costs on.

The venue, in this example is £10k, they are only paying £5k and expecting the guests to stump up the other £5k.

How is that not passing the costs on?

The guests have no choice in their accommodation and presumably, if no one else paid, the B&G would have to fork out £10k.

LadyHarrietdeSpook Fri 04-Oct-13 23:47:41


FreeWee Sat 05-Oct-13 07:39:42

Apologies for more confusion! The amounts were examples for easy maths! Essentially the bride and groom seem to have halved the venue cost then divided it by the number of rooms. So if it was £1k to hire the venue they've said let's charge our guests £100 per room for the week (5 rooms x £100 = £500, half the venue cost). If the venue hire is exclusive then whether the rooms were filled or not they would have to pay so by filling the rooms they pass some of the costs of venue hire onto the guests.

Threalamandaclarke Sat 05-Oct-13 07:41:50

Well, if you marry in the uk and guests stay overnight, the guests have to pay for their accommodation don't they? That's not consodered to be passing on the cost.
Lots of weddings in hotels for example would involve guests staying at the wedding venue. Do most couples pay for their guests overnight stays? If so, then my point is erroneous of course.
But I do agree that that weddings abroad usually involve a smaller cost to the b&g and a greater cost to the guests than a wedding at home. Obviously the travel is more expensive. But also, if I married at a report in Jamaica it would cost me about £5k for a two week (effectively my honeymoon) and the actual wedding, might well cost less than a grand. Even including a cake and some catering for the guests. Each guest would be paying thousands just to attend. So the B&G get a "dream wedding" and their honeymoon for a little over the cost of the honeymoon because the guests are paying to be at the resort.
In a uk hotel wedding the guests might pay £100 - £300 for an overnight stay in the venue hotel. Or they could stay in another venue or drive or cab home. Much less cost. The B&G would be paying seval thousand pounds just for the doing. The cost of the guests' accommodation is pretty much seperate from the wedding stuff. And of course this does not include their honeymoon.
So an pvseas wedding does, in many ways pass on a cost to the guests but that is not the same as suggesting that the guests are supplementing the venue cost. They could stay elsewhere but still attend the wedding. This isn't usually possible at an all inclusive Caribbean type resort because of the nature of the areas surrounding these reports. IYSWIM.

Threalamandaclarke Sat 05-Oct-13 07:45:31

But you don't know what the normal room rate is.
Or do you? It could be that that's how the venue divide it.

humphryscorner Sat 05-Oct-13 07:46:23

Haven't read all the thread as l

humphryscorner Sat 05-Oct-13 07:48:19

Posted too early!

I've been to a few weddings abroad. Loved them. No one was forced to go.
If you don't want to go .... Don't .

Threalamandaclarke Sat 05-Oct-13 07:50:50

For comparison, dh and I married in the uk at an hotel.
We paid for the registrar, venue, catering etc and then guests paid separately for their rooms. Some guests stayed elsewhere, some were driven home. But we could have paid all up front for all the rooms (we needed them all as lots of ppl water to stay there). If we had paid all up front and divided the cost between the guests the it might look like western recouping wedding costs. But really we would have just been securing their accommodation and they would have paid us rather than the venue.

FreeWee Sat 05-Oct-13 07:51:41

Yes bear because of how few rooms there are they know they'll fill them; whether by the A list or not. So they know they'll be able to recoup some of the venue costs from reselling the rooms. Other weddings I've heard of there are some rooms included in the venue hire and these rooms are given to special guests like parents, best man, bridesmaids etc. I've not (in my limited research asking people) come across anyone who sold those rooms to those people to recoup some venue hire costs.

Threalamandaclarke Sat 05-Oct-13 07:53:44

I think the issue here is that it's just too expensive for you right now. I am guessing that a couple of years ago that wouldn't have been the case and you've not all caught up with your altered financial status.
Hence my personal view that you might be best to decline.

FreeWee Sat 05-Oct-13 07:56:26

This venue can only be hired with exclusive use. Think large self catering cottage (it's not this is an example!!). You hire the whole place not just a few bedrooms. And the price is the same regardless of how many bedrooms you fill. It ranges from X in low season to Y in high season on the website. Dividing the high season price by the number of rooms you get almost exactly 50% of the venue hire price. If you get married in a hotel, the hotel could sell their rooms to anyone not just wedding guests so the b&g are not liable to fill them all or pay for them themselves. We reserved a block at the hotel we married at which needed to be booked by a certain date or they were released to the public. We sent this info on the invites. Other people non wedding guests were staying there while we were.

Threalamandaclarke Sat 05-Oct-13 08:00:25

I understand.but that's still not the same as passing on the cost IMHO.
Other than the obvious issues I mentioned about marrying in a destination wedding.
You can just stay elsewhere. It will still be too expensive. Because it's overseas and you have to fly and stay more than one night.

bakingaddict Sat 05-Oct-13 08:10:10

So what's really happening is that the B&G are contributing to half the accommodation costs and the other half of the cost is to be split 5 ways between the couples staying in the rooms. So if my maths is correct 50% paid by B&G, 50%/5 equalling 10% of the overall accommodation cost to be covered by you. Sounds a good deal to me, not quite sure what you are grumbling about!

When me and DH go to weddings we usually have to pay 100% of the accommodation costs. If you really cant afford it then don't go but you seem to making yourself out to be some kind of martyr to this wedding when I think the B&G are doing a nice gesture by paying most of the hotel costs

FreeWee Sat 05-Oct-13 08:20:04

real yes it is mainly that. But also that they are doing it abroad so they save money at a time when we really, really can't afford to do it. And I feel they're keeping their budget down by passing on costs to guests who in the main can afford it except for us. And the bride being as blinkered as she is hasn't cottoned on to the fact that for the next year money is tight for us and expects us to attend a wedding abroad with all its associated costs in a place we wouldn't choose to go on holiday even if we had the money, which we don't, which will end up costing us even more if we choose to try and make a holiday of it and stay elsewhere for a week (not her problem but might have been foreseen perhaps when realising this venue will have nothing for a 18 month old) I don't know why I expected a bride to be considerate really reading some of the threads on here!

diddl Sat 05-Oct-13 08:22:27

OOh-don't go already!!

But if the venue includes rooms, I do think that the B&G should just be paying it all tbh.

But really OP-don't go!

If it's too much hassle/expense, whatever-just say no!

Mimishimi Sat 05-Oct-13 08:24:43

Don't go and then it's not expensive. The bridal party can't really complain since it was thrir decision. Problem solved.

Threalamandaclarke Sat 05-Oct-13 08:59:00

Free I agree with Baking about the cost division tbh.
I do understand that destination weddings are proportionately more expensive for guests than "home" weddings. and that can be unfair.
I think you and your dh are expecting the B&G to pay for your accommodation and that is not reasonable IMHO.
This wedding doesn't suit you. it's too expensive.

I went to a wedding when my ds was about 8 mo. "no kids" invite. It was awful for me. I left him (for the first time) with someone for the day and collected him later and stayed in a hotel with him and dh. It was a major upheaval for me. I resented leaving him (childcare is a big big issue for us) I resented the hoops I had to jump through for that day's care, I resented staying stone cold sober all fucking day (still bf and then driving) and watching my dh having "all the fun".
I shouldn't have gone. I should have stayed home with my ds and watched tv and drank tea in my pjs.
Just saying.

Baking addict; your maths is faulty. You say you pay 100% of the accommodation cost. Presumably that means for one room. But you worked out the OP's as 50% divided by the number of rooms, and claim they are therefore only paying 10% of the accommodation costs. If YOU stayed in a hotel that had 100 rooms you wouldn't add up the total of what 100 rooms cost and then claim you were paying for 1% of that for your room so you had a great deal - you said yourself that you pay 100% of the cost, and the 100% refers to ONE ROOM. Other people 's rooms are not your concern where cost is worked out and neither should it be for the OP.

Bearbehind Sat 05-Oct-13 09:41:33

The B&G absolutely are passing in the costs to their guests.

They have chosen a venue that, for arguments sake, costs £10k. If they don't fill the 5 rooms, they'll have to pay the lot.

That is not the same as a wedding in a hotel where guests can stay if they want and if they don't the rooms will be sold to non-guests.

This couple are insisting that at least 5 couples shell out 10% of the costs of the wedding venue and stay for 1 week in a place with nothing else to do- how is that being considerate of their guests?

Threalamandaclarke Sat 05-Oct-13 09:53:37

I see what you are saying.
But the guests will always have to pay for travel and accommodation.
Should the B&G pay for the guests to stay at the hotel? Is that really reasonable?
They've gotta stay somewhere.

Mrsc020987 Sat 05-Oct-13 09:58:11

I got married abroad, mostly to get away from certain people who would have had to have been invited if here, we never expected anyone to come, we never invited just openly said to all family if you can make it we would love you to be there, needless to say the people we were running away from turned up!!

FreeWee Sat 05-Oct-13 10:06:59

Bear that is kind of how I'm feeling but am prepared to be told by others including real that I'm being unreasonable as I'm equally being as selfish as the b&g. They're thinking about their wedding and their finances and I'm thinking about my family and our finances. Someone says earlier that there's a natural conflict here and they can see both points of view as can I. We're both in the right and in the wrong to an extent. They can have whatever wedding they like. However, right now that happens to be incompatible with our finances. It's also in a place we'd never choose to go on holiday but that would be less of an issue if money wasn't so tight and we'd be able to suck up spending money to stay somewhere we don't really want to be because it's for them. Then spend money for us somewhere else. I'm hoping once they are subtly (ha!) told by my DH about what a stretch it will be they may offer to cover our accommodation costs. If they don't I will have a word with the bride and make it clear we are going to be broke by next summer and well, I guess take it from there!

Bearbehind Sat 05-Oct-13 10:10:27

threal, if it were a UK wedding the guests might be able to drive or even walk to the venue. If they need to stay over they can chose accommodation within their price bracket and chose the duration of their stay.

In this situation both the accommodation and duration has been specified in order to reduce the b & g's overall cost and that's not on.

How would it work if all the other guests said they would only stay for the night before and night after the wedding? Would they still be charged £1,000 each? You could stay in a pretty posh hotel for £500 per night fir the 2 nights elsewhere (I know the figures are notional but the principle is the same)

I think if you go down the route of insisting that people stay in a specific place because that is part of the conditions of you hiring the venue, you should pay for it. If the guests are free to make their own choices on where to stay and how long for then that's fine.

Threalamandaclarke Sat 05-Oct-13 10:11:36

You're not being unreasonable to think it's inconsiderate of them to expect you to spend so much money going to their wedding.
But I think it's unreasonable to expect them to pay for you.

theoriginalandbestrookie Sat 05-Oct-13 10:12:42

Freewee, it's a bit irrelevant how they are splitting the costs of the venue, as it's the cost of everything that is the problem.

The key issue is what you have posted:

"for the next year money is tight for us and expects us to attend a wedding abroad with all its associated costs in a place we wouldn't choose to go on holiday even if we had the money, which we don't, which will end up costing us even more if we choose to try and make a holiday of it and stay elsewhere for a week (not her problem but might have been foreseen perhaps when realising this venue will have nothing for a 18 month old"

That's what your problem is, not if it's good etiquette or not for the couple to expect guests to pay for accomodation. If I were you I would stop worrying about the details and focus on the big picture. They are getting married abroad. They want your DH to be best man. You can't afford it. So don't go already. Just tell em

"Thank you so much for your invite. Unfortunately we are unable to attend as we simply cannot afford the cost of going abroad. I'm sure you will appreciate that if there was any way at all we could afford to make it happen, we would.

Dh is very sorry that due to the circumstances he cannot be your best man. We wish you all the very best and want to invite you round before or after the special event so we can celebrate with you in a way that will not bankrupt us. "

Love Mr & Mrs Freewee

Threalamandaclarke Sat 05-Oct-13 10:14:51

Yes, it removes the choice and it s expensive for guests. I can see both sides here.
I wouldn't go. I think it's an unreasonable cost.

diddl Sat 05-Oct-13 10:14:59

If the venue includes rooms-what if all guests decide to sort out their own accommodation?

The B&G pay it all!

I think it's a cheek to tell people where to stay & how much to spend doing it!

OP-I really do think that you should just say no-can't afford it.

Don't drop hints-just say it!

Threalamandaclarke Sat 05-Oct-13 10:15:49

What original said

theoriginalandbestrookie Sat 05-Oct-13 10:16:14

Sorry freewee just saw your post. I didn't say you were being as selfish as the b&g ( that would take some doing), I'm just saying that it's almost as poor etiquette to hint and speculate about getting accomodation paid for as it is to have a destination wedding without considering the budget of your guests.

Bottom line is if people are having a wedding abroad they must accept that some people cannot afford to come. They should accept this with good grace.

You simply cannot start dropping subtle asides about getting your room paid for. You either can afford it and you go, or you don't. Simples.

Bearbehind Sat 05-Oct-13 10:18:47

free I know others have said it but your DH really needs to tell his mate this weekend that you can't afford it.

They have behaved badly by inviting you by text and assuming you will pay their quoted price, but, if you say nothing, it's not unreasonable for them to assume you will be doing it and it's not really fair to let them continue thinking that.

It's not a situation to be subtle in, there is no half way house. You won't have the money to do it without leaving your family short.

Don't hint or pussyfoot around- just tell them or suck it up. Anything in between will drive you mad between now and the wedding.

sooperdooper Sat 05-Oct-13 10:23:07

We got married abroad, our wedding costs weren't coveted by our guests and I never understand that argument against weddings abroad? We paid for the wedding, they were invited, they could come or not come, end of story

Its an invitation, nobody ever has to go to a wedding, I'm the Uk or anywhere else, adults can turn down the invitation easy enough!!

Different story if the bride and groom get narky if people don't go, but we said upfront if it's just us what the hell, we just want to get married and if anyone wants to come that's up to them

I think people get far too emotional about other peoples weddings, go or don't go, no big deal

sooperdooper Sat 05-Oct-13 10:24:33

Oh and we never told anyone where to stay or for how long, if they wanted a holiday around our wedding that was all up to them

sooperdooper Sat 05-Oct-13 10:28:01

I missed your lady post there free, I don't see why they should cover your costs, just say no you can't afford it - same as for a uk wedding you might not be able to afford, you don't have to go

theoriginalandbestrookie Sat 05-Oct-13 10:28:57

Different scenario though sooperdooper.

OPs DH has been asked to be best man, presumably said yes I'd be honoured, then got dropped with the bombshell that it was going to cost them thousands to go.

sooperdooper Sat 05-Oct-13 10:39:46

So he can still say no, the groom will have to find another best man, I think this is being blown out of all proportion

Yes it's nice to be asked to be best man but it's not the end of the world to say actually now we realise it's abroad we can't come

The bride and groom should've told people upfront it was abroad before asking people to be involved but maybe they didn't know? Anyway, had it been us and someone had said no we'd have just said no problem and they should do the same

MinesAPintOfTea Sat 05-Oct-13 10:40:10

sooper the argument about wedding costs being covered by the guests is that if you can get the same standard of reception for much less cost by going outside the UK then you save money. If the guests then have to spend £££ to attend the wedding then money has not been saved by the whole group.

And inviting someone to be best man then after he accepts dropping a £££ bombshell on him when he has a child and his household isn't earning is just unfair.

hermioneweasley Sat 05-Oct-13 10:49:08

OP, agree with all the others saying why on earth are you planning to do all this hint dropping. Just get DH to tell his friend that you can't afford to come. The friend decides whether or not to pay for you all to come. Simple.

"mate, I was honoured to be asked to be your best man and I accepted when u thought it was in the UK and with maternity leave and me studying and paying fees, we just can't afford it. I'm sorry"

nkf Sat 05-Oct-13 10:55:56

An invitation is one thing. Easily refused with polite thanks. But getting out of being best man requires more of a conversation.

Threalamandaclarke Sat 05-Oct-13 10:59:09

So have the conversation.

sooperdooper Sat 05-Oct-13 10:59:12

Minesapintoftea, yes I said they should've told him about it being abroad before asking him to be best man

But I disagree about wedding costs being covered by guests because they simply don't have to accept! Nobody is forced to go to any wedding, ever, so even if you can get a better standard for less abroad it's irrelevant because guests are invited, not forced

Weddings are about the two people getting married, anything else surrounding a wedding is an added bonus and I think too many people get too carried away about it both from a bride and groom or guest perspective

Guests can say no, brides and grooms have to accept that

nkf Sat 05-Oct-13 11:27:58

People hate talking about money. It's one of the taboos that fuels debt.

QueenStromba Sat 05-Oct-13 12:18:39

So the bride and groom can't afford the wedding they want in the UK so they are getting married abroad which will probably cost more overall due to travel and accommodation for guests but that's fine because they don't have to pay it.

I think it's bloody selfish to do that. Have the wedding you can afford that puts your guests out the least.

Most of our potential guests live in London so that's where we'll be having our wedding. Simple.

My uncle got married abroad and nobody from our family could afford to go although conveniently his wife's family could. He's rather under the thumb and we reckon she insisted on it because she knew we wouldn't be able to come.

we went abroad to get married but didnt invite or expect anyone to go with us. I wouldnt expect anyone to have to pay a fortune for the sake of seeing us get married.

MrsMook Sat 05-Oct-13 13:39:41

Getting married abroad is fine if you don't expect guests, or have a small number (such as close family) and know that cost won't exclude them. Otherwise you put people into a difficult position.

My friend had to miss his sister's Las Vegas wedding as the cost was unjustifiable. He comes from a small family and the only one not able to go, which I thought was pretty tough. They spent as much on the after party as they could have on a reception anyway, so no cost saving to the couple.

I just remembered that when my sister got married (normal wedding reception in nice city centre hotel), the day after when it came to checking out, there were a few of the wedding guests hanging out in reception, chatting and settling their room bill. BIL was a bit taken aback to have his mum take him aside to say that some uncle or other couldn't really pay his bill and as she is a widow she couldn't either. So BIL, having paid a fortune for the venue, meal, drinks etc for everyone was then forced to pay the room bill of some random uncle that could easily stayed in a nearby travelodge instead! He was really dropped in it and I don't think dsis and BIL were impressed! Some people are just twats.

bakingaddict Sat 05-Oct-13 14:32:13

Curlyhair...the OP stated in a previous post that the accommodation was hired as an exclusive venue and for the guests the B&G have halved the cost of the venue and divided that by the number of rooms which is 5. Half of a whole is 50% and 50% divided by 5 is 10%. If you look at the OP's own example figures she stated the cost as say £1000 but guests occupying the rooms have been asked to pay only £100, again a 10% figure. Where does the maths not add up? So the guests are being subsidised by the B&G and are not being expected to pay £200 for each room. Most venues especially when it's an intimate venue have no problem getting fully booked by the wedding party

It's really a moot point that the venue is exclusively hired and I think that is what is side-tracking the OP. I imagine they are giving parents and best man/bridesmaids first refusal but perhaps the OP should give it a miss as it's becoming such a sore point with her

ILikeBirds Sat 05-Oct-13 14:46:52

I think there is a subtle difference between a place where you can hire a venue and rooms separately and one where the venue is the whole package.

In the former case there is the transparency, the venue costs x amount to hire which the B&G pay and the rooms cost y amount which the guests pay.

If a venue costs x amount in total though who decides what proportion of that is for the venue and should be paid for by the B&G and what proportion is for the rooms and to be covered by the guests?

I'd hazard a guess that in the UK venue hire is considerably more than the amount spent by guests on accommodation so not the 50/50 being mentioned here.

MissBattleaxe Sat 05-Oct-13 17:04:10

OP Have you told your friends you can't go yet? I think the sooner the better. They don't sound as if they will get hints if they can't see the fact you currently have no income coming in.

Just tell them! Text them today and get it all over with.

CHJR Sat 05-Oct-13 18:35:33

OP, I think you're over-thinking this because you want to stay friends. Your best hope is for DH to send them a very clear email spelling out just this, however you phrase it: "You are great friends and I am so happy about your wedding. And I really, really felt proud you asked me to be best man. But I have to tell you I just cannot afford to fly to X and pay all the hotel costs, so we cannot come to the wedding. We hope you will understand and will still love us and be our friends. It kills me to say this but you'll have to ask someone else to be your best man. When you get back from the honeymoon come round to us for an extra celebration."

If they're friends, they may be annoyed at first but they will get it. If they don't get it, well, either eventually they grow up or you might as well lose their friendship now. Sad but true. Just be polite, warm and loving, and clear. Don't forget clear.

FreeWee Sat 05-Oct-13 18:43:46

Queen that was pretty much my thought when I started this thread. It's cheaper for them who can't afford UK but much much more expensive for us who can't afford abroad, this year because of our circumstances which I think they're oblivious too. Although of course they know DH is a full time student for a year and I'm on mat leave I don't think they understand the implications of it.

ILikeBirds yes I feel there's a difference too. When I started I was having a bit of a whinge that they'd complained they couldn't afford UK so were doing it abroad. I'm sure exclusive use of the kind of venue they're hiring would be a lot more in the UK. But looking on the Internet I can't find a 'room only' cost off this place. The whole thing needs to be hired. But it says how many rooms and doing a bit of a conversion from € to £ within a couple of hundred £ the 4 couples (other than the b&g) will be paying 40% of the cost to hire the WHOLE thing (other room paid for by b&g) So it feels as though essentially we're subbing the venue hire cost. In the UK you'd hire a hotel for (say) £2k then guests pay (say) £100 per room. The hire costs are fixed and separate and not shared amongst guests. Imagine hiring this hotel for £2k and inviting 100 people. 50 decide to book rooms in the hotel so you charge them £120 per room to recoup 50% of your hotel hire. Except a guest checks online and wonders why the Internet rate is £100 but they're being charged £120. And they find out it's so the b&g don't have to pay the full hotel hire cost. That's what it feels like. I may be comparing apples with oranges in which case I'm happy to have it pointed out to me I've got it wrong. I'd like to feel better about the whole thing and not feel diddled but at the moment I do.

DH is meeting groom for a drink this week prearranged for general reasons so I've asked him to raise it with him. I'm afraid no amount of MN telling him to grow a backbone and do it directly will actually make it happen. He will do it in his own way because that's the friendship they have. I'm direct with my friends and we know where we all stand but that's not how he operates. If no headway is being made when I see the bride next I will raise it with her more directly. Along the lines of: "Thank you for your text invitation. Sorry we haven't responded but we really can't see a way of affording it and wanted to exhaust all possible options before we said no. When DH agreed to be groom's best man we understood it was going to be in the UK. Now you've booked the venue abroad the reality is sinking in. I'm on mat leave till next year, DH is studying till after the wedding. By next summer we just can't see how we'll be able to afford to go abroad."

Bearbehind Sat 05-Oct-13 19:16:07

free, if your DH doesn't deliver, your response is pretty much spot on with the exception of the last sentance.

That does sound like you are trying to emotionally blackmail them.

Drop the 'we just can't see how we'll be able to afford to go abroad' and replace it with 'we just can't afford to go abroad'

They are taking the piss. You are quite justified in being annoyed that

a) they are asking their guests to subsidise their wedding (because which ever way you look at it, they are financially benefitting from this arrangement) and

b) they don't have enough empathy, or indeed common sense, to see you can't afford it in your situation.

Don't sink to their level by actually asking them or even hinting to them about paying for you.

They have had no qualms about asking you to stump up the cash, if they don't have the good grace to offer a solution to this situation, at least you come out with your head held high and knowing you didn't stoop to their level.

sooperdooper Sat 05-Oct-13 20:35:36

Ok, having read your last post free I do agree in this instance they are asking you to subsidise the venue hire, which isn't fair

If you have a wedding abroad imo guests should have the option of where they stay and how long for, specifying an accommodation cost and length of stay is ridiculous

QueenStromba Sun 06-Oct-13 02:00:43

What you need to remember is that they can afford a wedding here just not the one they wanted. Get your DH to lay it on thick with the groom. I'm sure he isn't being a groomzilla.

I got engaged a month ago and found a hotel straight away that would do the whole wedding shebang for a grand if I booked before the end of January. This is in London too.

I'll say it again: they can afford a UK wedding, just not the one the want.

sooperdooper Sun 06-Oct-13 02:25:39

Queenstromba I disagree about the whole not being able to afford a wedding here concept, maybe got this couple it's true, but we could've afforded a wedding here, just didn't want one, we wanted something small, in the sun, and not to spend money on a wedding we could better spend elsewhere

People don't always want a big wedding, lots of guests, etc cirrelevant of cost

VestaCurry Sun 06-Oct-13 02:45:44

If someone is asked to be best man at a wedding abroad, the very least the bride & groom to be should do is pay for his travel and accommodation costs. End of.
Your dh should not feel compelled to go, especially if they're not stumping up the cash for him to attend. Let them choose some other mug to join in their 'special day'.
Am sick to death of some people thinking their wedding is 'their day', as in their needs come before their guests. These kind of people should bugger off and get on with 'their day' alone.

Threalamandaclarke Sun 06-Oct-13 07:19:24

But it is their day.
The b&g should have the day they can/ want.
I don't agree that hey are expecting guests to subsidise their venue costs, other than in relation to the points I've already made about destination weddings. Free has looked online but not had talks with the venue so her knowledge about how the costs are divided up is limited.
I do think it's a bit self absorbed to "host" a wedding that is very expensive for guests. Destination weddings usually fit that description IMO. I think there is something über cheeky about assuming ppl will give over their precious holiday time (never holiday with friends) and hard earned cash for their wedding. But I don't think that means that the B&G should change their plans or pay for guests' accommodation. They just need to accept that lots of ppl can't or won't go.

Threalamandaclarke Sun 06-Oct-13 07:23:32

And i think there's a bit of bitching about the bride/ defending the groom with the assumption she's a massive bridezilla and he's a poor hen -pecked innocent who would be oh -so reasonable if it weren't for his awful, selfish btb. Not sure that's fair.

Ragwort Sun 06-Oct-13 07:28:34

Why is this becoming such an issue?

You can't afford to go - just decline the invitation, with apologies from your DH for not being able to be Best Man.

Most people getting married would not give this much thought to one couple attending their wedding, they have got 101 other things to think about and your friends can find another Best Man.

Don't let this cause you so much anxiety.

nkf Sun 06-Oct-13 07:44:15

I wouldn't say anything about them changing location. Just say neither of your have any money coming in and you can't afford it. It's okay not to be able to afford things. People are so driven to put on a brave face in front of other people, that they end up with this sort of stress.

FamiliesShareGerms Sun 06-Oct-13 07:51:32

OP, the other thing is your DH needs to tell his friend promptly that you can't go to the wedding. The groom needs to think about the implications of that, including asking another best man (who might also need to save up for travel costs). That's not something to sit on until further along the track.

YANBU to be upset you cannot afford to go and YANBU to decline the invitation, despite your dh being best man and a close friend, in the circumstances of this thread.

YABVVVVVVVU to not tell them asap if you are not going and making it far more likely that there will be a big fall out. Because if you only tell it to them straight a couple of months before the wedding they might not be able to fill the other room as other guests might not be able to save up the money in time. And another close friend who decides not to go to a wedding abroad but who might have been persuaded if they were best man doesn't have things to save either.

If the bride and groom are going to be unreasonable about this then they will be whenever you tell them. Pussy footing around won't make them more likely to understand it and you will get more and more stressed that you feel they should understand your circumstances and see what you are trying to say without saying it. That is you being unreasonable - if they have never been in your set of circumstances abs you've previously enjoyed holidays like this they might presume you can still afford it with savings and this presumption is not unreasonable if you've not told them you can't!

If they get stroppy this week at being told you can't afford it so won't be able too come then they are totally out of order.But they are not being unreasonable to be angry with you if you mess them about on this when you know now you can't afford it. If you only tell them straight in a few months they are NOT bring bridezilla and groomzilla if they are extremely cross with you

Yes, cross posted with families who said what I did much more succinctly!

People who do the softly softly thing think they are bring nice by not being upfront and in your face. Actually they are causing much more problems by expecting people to just know what they are not saying.

Can't you see how out of order you are being but addressing it like this?

And actually I had what you might term a wedding like this is the UK. Our venue could only be hired by paying for exclusive use for 24 hours. It included a number of bedrooms that had to each be paid for under the terms of hire. They cost about £100 each and these costs were listed if anyone wanted to check. But actually if everyone had declined staying in them then we would have had to pay.

We gave first refusal to family, bridesmaids, best man and ushers. And included info on cheaper local hotels they could choose if they preferred. If they had said 'no thanks' we would have said 'no problem' and asked someone else. Ultimately if we'd had to pay we would have done so and not made anyone feel awkward about it. And we did pay for the usher who came from overseas.

As it happened everyone we asked said yes. But I certainly didn't see this as subbing the venue hire. The venue your friends are using might have broken costs down in the same way hence your friends pricing the rooms like this. They all needed to pay for accommodation anyway. But I don't think its different for a wedding abroad. Yes, the costs are higher for guests, but its still only an invitation that you are not forced to accept.

WireCat Sun 06-Oct-13 08:54:08

Your dh is going to have t grow a backbone & decline.

An invite is just that, an invitation. It's not an expectation.

Threalamandaclarke Sun 06-Oct-13 09:13:14

Is DH "dithering" because he doesn't want to upset them/ be seen as the bad guy? Or because he's hoping they'll offer to pay and he's struggling to accept the truth of your current finances?
Good luck anyway.

MollyWhuppie Sun 06-Oct-13 10:56:17

OP we were in a similar situation this year - DH asked to be an usher abroad. They wanted the wedding party to stay in the venue for the whole week along with children for those who had them.

Our children are pre school age and the wedding was scheduled to be in the summer holidays so we were unable to take advantage of one of the last years we could benefit from holidaying in term time and the cost was extortionate. The only way we could afford to go was if we made it our family holiday, otherwise our children wouldn't have had a holiday with us this year if we had gone by ourselves for the weekend.

Once we had agreed to go, it turned out children wouldn't be welcome at the wedding itself (we had no problem with this in itself) but that we would have to fork out the best part of £200 for them to go in a mobile crèche! (Which turned out to be a hideous set up) DH then was told he would need to pay for a bespoke suit to wear on the day! We sucked it up but it did leave a sour taste to be honest. It wasn't what we would have chosen for a family holiday.

In hindsight I wish we had travelled to the wedding destination for a couple of nights only, stayed locally in a b&b and then buggered off elsewhere for our family time!

If I were you I would make sure you are aware of all associated costs, as with the one we went to the costs just kept spiralling and we didn't have any choice but to pay once we were committed. Oh and the groom had an expensive stag do abroad too! Just beware!

HappyMummyOfOne Sun 06-Oct-13 11:04:48

Weddings abroad are only fine when the guests can all travel easily and their costs are met by the B&G.

Anything else is putting costs on the guests simply because the B&G want a better wedding. Its costs about £60 for a wedding service in the UK, anything on top of that is essentially just a party. Its the vows that make a marriage.

NachoAddict Sun 06-Oct-13 11:28:16

It seems that your dp really wants to ho to the wedding. Would you be so adamant you couldn't afford it if it were your best friend? I can understand not wanting to shell out, especially when it would be difficult but if you would do it for your best friend you have to take your dps wishes into consideration.

I know you said dp couldn't gi alone but I must have missed why? Perhaps he could travel alone and just stay the night before and the the night of the wedding. If he us driving he would have the car anyway.

MissBattleaxe Sun 06-Oct-13 13:33:52

Nacho- the whole point of the thread is not about not WANTING to go, it's about the fact that they do not have the money even if they really wanted to go.

OP is on mat leave and her DH is currently a student with no income.

MissBattleaxe Sun 06-Oct-13 13:58:09

Also nacho- the venue is in the middle of nowhere, is abroad, and entails a flight so I don't think just staying one night is an option.

NachoAddict Sun 06-Oct-13 14:44:58

Fair enough if they genuinely cant afford it, its just the op has said several times that they will be going so they must be able to afford it at a push. Its just not ideal and not they could do without it.

FreeWee Sun 06-Oct-13 18:11:04

We genuinely can't afford it but we do have credit cards. Do we want to use them? Not really but their decision to have their wedding abroad next summer is unbelievably bad timing. The year after we'd probably be able to providing DH gets a job at the end of his studying. It's just this year and I don't think the b&g appreciate that.

My best friend's hen do was extortionate. Her friend kept asking for more and more (over £300 for 3 nights in UK) till I said "Look is there any cost cutting to be done here like cava instead of champagne?" I was met with hostility (not by my BF; she knew nothing) but clearly having pondered my suggestions the friend reimbursed everyone over £100 (can't remember exactly but a fair whack) as she hadn't spent quite as much as anticipated. So I know what asking somebody directly can't get you but that's not my DH's way with his BF of almost 30 years. I'll leave it to him for the time being and respect his way of doing things. But knowing the bride she'll want an answer and cut out the middle men by coming to me. I will respond along the lines as I set out above, taking care to word it so I don't emotionally blackmail her.

My DP could go alone but the room cost will be the same regardless but we would save on flights. Same hire car cost though which is essential as it's very remote. We're hoping instead to make the most of it and have a family holiday potentially by hiring somewhere on the coast with another couple who have a young child. That would save loads. Flights are with low cost airline as for once the fact they fly to airports in the middle of nowhere is a bonus! I'm doing lots of research into the cost and working out what we can put on card. I would be happy not going but I can see it ruining the friendship so we have to talk to them about it, laying all our (credit) cards on the table, so to speak grin

expatinscotland Sun 06-Oct-13 18:34:10

'We genuinely can't afford it but we do have credit cards. Do we want to use them? Not really but their decision to have their wedding abroad next summer is unbelievably bad timing.'

Any friend with whom a relationship would be ruined over your not getting into debt for their wedding isn't worth having.

I count going into debt over going to a friend's wedding abroad up there with one of the stupidest financial decisions you can make (along with loaning money to friends or family with no written contract, going into debt/'loaning' money to a boy or girlfriend and various other completely brainless things to do), but hey, it's your neck not mine.

You'll go and do it anyhow because you are these peoples' doormats, and from the sound of it (the best friend's hen do), other peoples', too.

MissBattleaxe Sun 06-Oct-13 18:39:45

If the friendship would be ruined by you not being financially able to attend their extravagant wedding, then it wasn't much of a friendship to begin with.

Just because a friendship is 30 years old, it doesn't make the friend a force who must be obeyed.

What kind of friend would do this to you? I would be mortified if anyone went into debt over my wedding for fear of pissing me off.

Never mind trying to keep the bride and groom sweet- what are they doing to show consideration for YOU and your family?

nkf Sun 06-Oct-13 19:36:36

Please don't consider using credit cards to finance a trip to somebody else's jamboree. Just don't. It would be madness.

nkf Sun 06-Oct-13 19:39:57

I see you are considering using a credit card. Seriously? One of you is a student and the other is on maternity leave. And you are considering going into debt for a holiday to someone else's wedding. I wouldn't even go into debt for my own wedding. You cannot afford to do this thing. If you are using credit cards, then you cannot afford to do it. The bloody things should be called debt cards because that is what they are.

bigknickersforthepicker Sun 06-Oct-13 19:47:35

I think you need to figure cost of you all going plus this extra stay with another couple hmm

and him going alone.

im just confused. . you can't afford to go..but are finding ways to go but adding extra financial commitment by adding a family holiday on to it!?

I think the price between saving on flights and outfits and food etc if dh goes alone will be enough to justify not going if you guys are really that hard up this year.

MissBattleaxe Sun 06-Oct-13 20:11:56

OP, this may not be the case, but it sounds like you and DH are scared of the bride and groom.

Why? They can't force you to afford something.

Ragwort Sun 06-Oct-13 22:28:16

Agree with MissBattleaxe - surely you just explain that you can't afford it, you are mad to consider using credit cards.

Why is it proving so hard for you to decline gracefully, you are allowing yourselves to be bullied into something that is clearly very, very difficult for you.

sooperdooper Sun 06-Oct-13 22:59:19

If you can't afford it don't go, if they're real friends they'll understand, putting it in credit cards is stupid, why can't you just say no, I don't see why that's so difficult

sooperdooper Sun 06-Oct-13 23:01:26

It almost sounds like you want to stretch yourselves by putting it on credit cards, so you can complain about how unreasonable they are to have a wedding abroad

MissBattleaxe Sun 06-Oct-13 23:04:42

OP, you posted this thread on Wednesday and it's now Sunday.

I can't believe you haven't phoned/rung them/texted/emailed/visited them to say "Look, we really can't come. It's not because we don't want to, it's because we simply can't. Sorry. Hope we can celebrate with you some other way"

Close discussion. Do not let them plead or cajole. You can't do it. End of story.

Bearbehind Sun 06-Oct-13 23:18:15

It seems to be becoming increasingly obvious how this will transpire.

The best man doesn't have the balls to say 'no'.

The OP won't actually say no for fear of the 'boys' relationship.

OP and her husband will spend money they can't afford on subsidising their 'friends' wedding.

She'll quietly fume about it forever more.

It won't occur to her husband to be annoyed because it was better than dealing with the situation head on.

Bridezilla will win the day.

OP will wonder why others find this kind of behaviour unacceptable when in fact she has enabled it.

Loopylala7 Sun 06-Oct-13 23:26:27

We've been to one or two abroad weddings, the first was European. We got a budget airline and cheap hotel the other side and decided to stay on a few days as our annual holiday, was great fun and didn't resent the cost, as actually cost not much more than a 2 night stay in a British hotel when we've had to travel to a friends wedding across the uk. The other was a lot further afield, BUT it somewhere DH and I had always wanted to visit, so used it as an excuse to go there. We knew far in advance, saved like mad, no Xmas/birthday presents and we had a week there, great fun again. I think you should look at it as an excuse for a holiday. No child abroad weddings can be problematic though, had one this year, DH's friend. Had we been able to go for 2 nights, wouldn't of minded, but flights were 4 nights apart, and DC is still young, so he went, I stayed at home.

sooperdooper Sun 06-Oct-13 23:30:45

Bearbehind, I can't see how the bride is bridezilla, if the OP and her Dh haven't got the guts to just say no it's hardly her fault

I think the same as you apart from that , they seem to want to purposefully put themselves in debt, which they'll stew over for years and secretly resent the other couple when in actual fact they have the opportunity just not to go

M10s Mon 07-Oct-13 00:37:46

Just wondering. A remote venue, in the summer (so presumably warm weather) and you are hiring a vehicle. Could you camp? (Right outside the venue maybe, so you could make use of all it's facilities grin ). I know you intend to fly, so wouldn't want to be taking a tent, but in many countries it's possible to hire camping equipment. Or perhaps it would be within your holiday budget to hire a campervan, instead of a car.

Threalamandaclarke Mon 07-Oct-13 04:52:53

There must be more to this than meets the eye.
I agree it's madness to gointo debt for a wedding. Especially someone else's. If you are worried about falling out with the B&G then you might want to consider that it's almost inevitable if you spend money you don't have on attending their nuptials.
Even if your DH manages to manipulate the B&G into paying for the room there will still be flights to pay for.
Sorry. I don't mean to sound rude bt he or both of you are in denial about your situation.

FreeWee Mon 07-Oct-13 07:25:58

I actually agree with all the comments above and am happy to accept that using our credit cards is a stupid thing to do, but it seems inevitable to enable us to attend. I do understand all the 'don't go' comments but that's not an option. I know I'm going to get replies saying it is, but it's not. It just isn't. And all along this thread I've made it clear we're going. Just a bit peeved the b&g booked abroad because they couldn't afford UK at a time when we can't afford abroad. Debt for someone else's wedding is stupid but it's a 0% one and we're budgeting to pay it off by the end of the period, providing (& this is the dangerous bit) by DH gets a job within 3 months of finishing studying. I wouldn't say we're scared of the b&g but it's a long standing friendship which my DH wouldn't rock the boat of. The bride does like things her own way (who doesn't with a wedding?) but even she's surpassed herself with this one. DH is meeting his friend this week face to face so seemed better to give the information that way rather than a text.

And I know I'm being precious but I can't stand camping nor can my DH so whilst that is technically an option, with an 18 month old I'd really rather not. We're adding extra financial commitment because we'd like our DD to have a lovely time abroad for her first holiday. Hire car and flights will be pretty much the same it'll just be accommodation, which we're hoping to share, and food, which if we go self catering we can try and do as cheaply as at home.

That's a big if - do you know how many thousands of graduates are on the dole just now? hmm

Either way I think you have to let the b&g know that things are very tight but you're stretching yourself because you love them.

That way, when the "just a weekend" stag/hen dos are organised and you really can't go to them, they'll know why. Or if you don't give a present. Or if you don't book for the "night before" lavish dinner. And so on.

nkf Mon 07-Oct-13 07:38:31

Better to be sensible than peeved I'd say.

sooperdooper Mon 07-Oct-13 07:40:41

True long standing friendships don't get rocked by one persons financial arrangements, go but stop moaning about if or making out they're bring unreasonable, it's your decision

Threalamandaclarke Mon 07-Oct-13 07:55:57

Well if you have no choice but to go then your problem is with your dh IMO. Suck it up. Stick it on plastic and pay it off but don't blame your friend for her choice of venue.
It's not thoughtful to have a wedding that's so expensive for guests but the only reason you have to go is because you (or your DH at my best guess) want to.

Mimishimi Mon 07-Oct-13 08:19:16

It is unreasonable of them to dictate which hotel you should stay in to cover their costs. Definitely would not agree to that. Still think you should tell them asap that you can't make it so they can look for another best man.

Cohenite Mon 07-Oct-13 08:21:19

I discovered after my son's wedding that people (family members) had been complaining about the price of drink & accommodation in the rather beautiful country house hotel which was the wedding venue. Cue BIL telling everyone that 'no way would he expect people to pay extortionate amounts for drinks at his daughter's wedding'.

His perception of extortionate prices is perhaps skewed by the amount of alcohol he puts away!

Two years later it is announced that DNeice will be married abroad.

Neither the destination nor time of year are what I would choose for a holiday but accept their choice and book flights & accommodation neither of which were inexpensive. The wedding was lovely and I'm almost over the fact that it had to be my annual holiday because of the cost. What does continue to rile me is BIL repeatedly telling people how they had a fabulous holiday and even taking in the cost of their accommodation the wedding still cost them far less than the equivalent in the UK and of course there was a free bar!

Well of course that made it so much more affordable. Prat!!

Cohenite Mon 07-Oct-13 08:27:15

There was no need for anyone to stay in the wedding venue, there were a plethora of B&Bs around for those who wanted to stay but most of the family live less than an hour's drive away.

Peeved and resentful of Tunbridge Wells.

Cohenite Mon 07-Oct-13 08:28:42

Was referring to DS's wedding ^^ in UK

Threalamandaclarke Mon 07-Oct-13 08:48:54

cohenite grin thanks

FreeWee Mon 07-Oct-13 08:49:26

Horry I think that is the essence of it. Things are tight but we'll stretch ourselves because it's them so don't expect extravagant hen/stag do, present or yes that classic before the event dinner attendance. I'm moaning here because it would be mean spirited to moan in RL. I've brought it up with my DH and he's not keen to chat because I suspect he's doing that head in the sand thing where if you don't talk about it it will go away. hmm

My original point on this thread was that I feel it's unreasonable for b&gs to pass on wedding costs to their guests by having a wedding abroad because it's cheaper for them but not cheaper for their guests. Give me an example where it's been cheaper for the guests to go abroad than it would have been in the UK? Yes guests don't have to go and there's been other weddings abroad we've not gone to. But passing on costs to your nearest and dearest (close family and close friends e.g. Best man) because you think they can afford it more than you (which if you knew the WHOLE back story is what's probably happening here) is a bit unreasonable. B&gs can have whatever wedding they like it's completely up to them and they can think about themselves as much as they like. But. When they invite people to be part of the ceremony then change the goal posts because they realise they can't afford what they want in the UK thus passing on the costs to people who are supposed to be their closest f&f is I feel a bit unreasonable. I don't think the b&g are being malicious or sneaky or anything like that. I think they think they're getting what they want, their f&f can afford it so why not? Well because their best man and his family can't afford it. I think they're being thoughtless rather than anything else. It genuinely hasn't occurred to them how we're going to pay to attend almost a year after DH's last pay cheque. And him getting a job at the end of it isn't guaranteed so we do need to have contingency money. I do appreciate all the comments as it does help me see others perspective. I'm also a lot clearer about what is getting my goat and how we can resolve it.

Threalamandaclarke Mon 07-Oct-13 09:03:12

I do understand.
I spent 2k just to attend a relative's destination wedding in the Caribbean.
I could afford it (couldn't now with DCs) and i had a nice holiday but it still riled me. Not an island would have chosen and had to spend my holiday with family angry.
But if that came up now I wouldn't go because it wosecure an taking money away from things with/ for my DCs.
If my dh insisted we did that I might klb.
Luckily, for all that I grumble (Quite rightly grin) he wouldn't do that.
Good luck with it freewee and try to enjoy it if you have to go.

Mimishimi Mon 07-Oct-13 09:10:21

You need to tell them. Don't spoil their wedding by letting this fester under the surface.

diddl Mon 07-Oct-13 09:14:17

Is a UK wedding really so expensive that flights & accommodation elsewhere are cheaper??

Even if the B&G weren't trying to pass costs on, isn't a wedding abroad for a guest always more due to travel & maybe staying longer?

Plus there's time off work!

OP, I really don't understand why you're going-especially if you can't find cheaper accommodation.

MissBattleaxe Mon 07-Oct-13 09:48:15

I think you are going out of politeness and because you are afraid of upsetting them.

The bride and groom, meanwhile, should not be upset if their best man has no income and cannot afford to attend their overseas wedding. What they are doing is really unfair, and I think you're going just to please them.

I wouldn't go. Your credit card bill will last a lot longer than their wedding. It's unfair of them to ask so I'm at a loss to understand why you're going.

Also- remember that it will be about twice as expensive as you think it will be. If you can't refuse to go to their wedding, how are you going to refuse that expensive round of drinks at their wedding? or that big meal in the restaurant that they want you to go to? learn to say NO now, or you'll be paying for years.

expatinscotland Mon 07-Oct-13 10:04:49

You are resolving it by going into credit card debt. You two are as bad as they are, but far less sensible with money.

MissBattleaxe Mon 07-Oct-13 10:07:51

I think you're putting your friends before your finances and I think you always will because by going, you are enabling them to do similar again.

Threalamandaclarke Mon 07-Oct-13 10:35:25

If my best friend asked me for a pony for her birthday that would be unreasonable and thoughtless.
If I bought her one that would be *** stupid.

sooperdooper Mon 07-Oct-13 11:34:19

My original point on this thread was that I feel it's unreasonable for b&gs to pass on wedding costs to their guests by having a wedding abroad because it's cheaper for them but not cheaper for their guests. Give me an example where it's been cheaper for the guests to go abroad than it would have been in the UK?

Nobody has disagreed that obviously it's more expensive if people choose to accept the invite and make a holiday of it - nobody is holding a gun to your head, you seem set on making this their fault rather than blaming yourself/your DH for declining

If you want to be a martyr about it and then moan (and pay off your credit card) forever more then go for it

I'm also a lot clearer about what is getting my goat and how we can resolve it.

You can resolve it extremely simply, say no confused you seem scared of telling them the truth, are they really good friends or not?

Bearbehind Mon 07-Oct-13 11:47:17

You really don't have to go but if you have decided you will be going there is absolutely no point in having any of the conversations you or your husband planned to have with the B&G.

If they thought what they were doing was unreasonable, they wouldn't have done it so no amount of pussy footing around will change that and if you are going anyway, unless you emotionally blackmail them into paying for you, which makes you as bad as them, any conversation is a complete waste of breath.

The b&g have been completely unreasonable by asking your DH to be best man at a UK wedding, then changing their minds and telling you how much their wedding abroad will cost you and how many days you have to be there for.

However, the fact that you find it necessary to compensate for their shitty behaviour in order to continue the friendship, by doing exactly what they want you to do and by getting into debt and seriously compromising your family's financial security in doing so, makes you the complete idiots, not them.

MissBattleaxe Mon 07-Oct-13 12:14:24

Bearbehind- agree with this post and your earlier one too.

Who's the fool? the fool with the exorbitant wedding or the fool who goes to it?

sherbetpips Mon 07-Oct-13 12:24:16

Expense wise it is no cheaper for a couple to marry abroad than marry here. It is however somewhat more romantic to marry cheaply on a beach than marry cheaply at a register office.
As for transferring the costs to the guest yes there is a bit of that but it only becomes a problem when they get funny if you cant afford to come, especially if you are a very close friend or part of the wedding party. 'Can't afford it' is often seen as an easy excuse, especially in the eyes of the couple who are all wrapped up in the 'we are getting married everyone be happy for us' mentality.

LaRegina Mon 07-Oct-13 12:25:14


YABU. People (in general) seem to forget that a wedding is about what the bride and groom want. Anybody who has a problem with it doesn't have to go - problem solved.

Personally I always loved the idea of a wedding amidst a holiday with guaranteed sunshine and completely dodging the speeches/dramas with great aunts you never normally see and the crap disco at the end - and for DH & I (and our close friends/families) it couldn't have gone better.

Each to their own, etc etc - all you have to do is be upfront if you don't think you can afford the expense, or just don't want to go for whatever reason. When we got married some friends came, some didn't, for various reasons - we didn't mind at all smile

FreeWee Mon 07-Oct-13 12:25:31

I agree we are idiots for putting up with this but I think because the bride has form for hair brained ideas neither my DH nor I genuinely thought this wedding would actually be abroad. Till we got the text that they'd booked it. See the earlier post about doing up the house but not doing it up. She barely ever follows through on anything. So with hindsight we should have said something earlier when the idea was mooted but my DH didn't want to cause a fuss about something that was unlikely to happen. Except it did and his bluff has been well and truly called. He is now scared of saying to them "Errr hang on, we didn't actually think you'd do this".

Yep we are totally enabling them, particularly the bride who does has form as in a previous example re sleeping arrangements. But DH's best friend is marrying her and to get along we'll go along with it. There are many, many examples where I've got into arguments with DH about pandering to their behaviour and sometimes he tells them how he'd like things and sometimes he tells me I need to suck it up. This is a suck it up occasion of massive proportions but one, with hindsight, of our own making because we should have said when they mooted the idea that it would be out of the question for us. We really thought it was a stupid idea they'd realise was stupid and not actually do. Now the bride is moaning on FB about how difficult it is planning a wedding abroad!!! Forgive me if I don't give a shit.

Threalamandaclarke Mon 07-Oct-13 12:35:31

You seem to have chosen to make martyrs of yourselves by going into debt. But at least you can enjoy bitching about the bride forever more confused

sooperdooper Mon 07-Oct-13 12:38:38

Erm, so you did know there was a possibility it would be abroad all along, they haven't sprung it on you at all

MinesAPintOfTea Mon 07-Oct-13 12:38:47

Well you can just say "Sorry, only looked at our budget when you gave us the price. We really can't afford it. Have a lovely time, will see you when you get back etc."

You are allowed to not care, but you won't get much sympathy when hundreds of people have advised you on how to politely decline.

Inertia Mon 07-Oct-13 12:56:40

Well, there's inconsiderate behaviour due to selfishness/ ignorance , and there's financially reckless behaviour due to cowardice. Can't see how you're in any position to criticise the B&G's selfish behaviour by responding with a plan that' s both selfish and stupid (because you are not considering the future needs of your child here,you are spending money you don't have in a bid to smooth over a friendship).

You can blame the bride and groom all you like, but until you (as a couple) start taking responsibility for your own actions then your complaints are difficult to justify.

expatinscotland Mon 07-Oct-13 13:35:13

'There are many, many examples where I've got into arguments with DH about pandering to their behaviour and sometimes he tells them how he'd like things and sometimes he tells me I need to suck it up. This is a suck it up occasion of massive proportions but one, with hindsight, of our own making because we should have said when they mooted the idea that it would be out of the question for us. We really thought it was a stupid idea they'd realise was stupid and not actually do. '

And therein lies the problem.

Stupid is as stupid does.

theoriginalandbestrookie Mon 07-Oct-13 16:10:13

So just to clarify OP, you are going to get flights cheaply and share accomodation with friends and make it into your family holiday.

Does this mean you won't be staying at the venue? If so that will be an interesting discussion and one where you are absolutely in the right .Bride and groom will be annoyed as they have costed it based on the entire bridal party staying there so they will incur lots of additional cost if you don't stay there, but they absolutely cannot insist that you stay at a certain location.

ZZZenagain Mon 07-Oct-13 16:15:44

if you can't afford it, you can't afford it. I would tell them that you unfortunately cannot afford to attend. They will find someone else to be best man (perhaps from the wider family).

NachoAddict Mon 07-Oct-13 19:50:51

When they were throwing the idea around did your dp agree that he would be best man and attend abroad wedding? Thinking it would never happen? If that is the case then yabu to moan about it now and call them selfish and unreasonable. They discussed it before they booked!

WorrySighWorrySigh Mon 07-Oct-13 21:54:01

You are planning to risk your family's financial security rather than lose face and admit to your friends that you cant afford this.

Cant you see that this is feckless behaviour? It is no different from buying a plasma telly on tick when you cant afford the repayments.

MissBattleaxe Mon 07-Oct-13 22:00:42

I agree.

OP you are creating a financial burden for your family rather than say No. It's really foolish. Your DH needs to think again, as do you!

nkf Tue 08-Oct-13 17:38:36

I don't understand why you can't say no and be clear why. What do you think might happen if you did?

MissBattleaxe Wed 09-Oct-13 10:13:18

If you said no, they might be pissed off. But they shouldn't be pissed off since your financial situation is something you can't currently help.

You are effectively putting the couple before your own family.

Glendaanddennisarentinvited Wed 09-Oct-13 22:32:03

Would they do the same for you?

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