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For not wanting to pay for this woman to come to DC's birthday activity?

(143 Posts)
Rosieeo Sat 30-Oct-10 09:04:59

DD's birthday is coming up, and we decided that we'd take her plus friends to a local theme park for the day. They're all in reception class. We planned on there being two adults/two cars/eight children.

Got an email last night from one parent saying that is was very generous of me to pay for everyone to have a day out. I was a bit confused and replied saying that it was only ten tickets and it would be significantly cheaper than having a party.

I got another email this morning saying that there was no way that she would let her DS go there 'on his own' for the day, but that she and her DH would meet us there with her DS. She finished by saying that she hoped I didn't mind and that it was 'only another two tickets after all' !?!

Now, I don't believe for one moment that I should have to pay for her and her DH, although I am interested in what you think of it! But am I being unreasonable to ask parents to let their 4/5 year old go on a 30 minute car journey to a theme park for the day without their parents?

thisisyesterday Sat 30-Oct-10 09:06:56

hmm i wouldn't let my 4 year old go to a theme park with only 2 adults to 4 children, no sorry.

i DO think she is taking the piss by saying it's "only another 2 tickets".
if it were me and i was uncomfortable with it i would either not let him go, or pay to go myself.

thequimreaper Sat 30-Oct-10 09:08:17

ditto thisisyesterday

rubyslippers Sat 30-Oct-10 09:08:19

I would accompany my 4 year old to a party especially one which is a drive away and an all day event

Would I pay? Yes I would

also 2 adults and 8 children - what about taking them to the loo and stuff? Sounds like you may be a little short handed IMO

SocialButterfly Sat 30-Oct-10 09:08:31

I dont think you should have to pay for them to come but I would be a bit worried about sending my 4 yr old to a theme park on her own for the day - in fact at 4 or 5 she probably wouldnt have gone on her own anyway. How well do you know them, its different if you are all good friends and know each other well but otherwise I think you are being a bit u.

borderslass Sat 30-Oct-10 09:09:04

mine are older but at that age I wouldn't of allowed it, not enough adults.But I wouldn't of expected another parent to pay for me to go either.

thisisyesterday Sat 30-Oct-10 09:10:44

sorry, i meant 1 adult to 4 children of course.

2 adults to 8

deaconblue Sat 30-Oct-10 09:11:24

There's no way my 4 year old could cope with a day out with someone else's parents. I would need to go along but I would expect to pay for my own ticket.

SeaTrek Sat 30-Oct-10 09:12:09

First of all, no, I would not let my 4/5 yr old go on a 30 min car journey for the day without us or close family.

However, there is NO WAY I would ask to be paid for. If I felt I wanted to drive him and be there then I would pay for myself.

My most likely response would be to pass on a regret and make up an excuse. I have done that once before for a party when my son was 5 and I felt the party was inappropriate for his age and it took too much travelling (was 40 mins away and parents were to make the trip).

I think you party is a lovely idea but really suited to an older age group - I would say 7+ at least.

cluelessnchaos Sat 30-Oct-10 09:13:03

Just email her and say you have budgeted only for her children and you look forward to seeing them there where you will happy to pay her dc in or else reimburse for the ticket if she is already paid in.

Rosieeo Sat 30-Oct-10 09:13:13

Oh dear. Would people just not allow it unless they (parents) were there, or would it be OK if I threw another adult in - so 3 adults to 8 children?

Glad I've not sent the invitations out yet!

rubyslippers Sat 30-Oct-10 09:14:44

Personally rosieeo, and my DS is very confident, I wouldn't let him go on his own

It is a HUGE responsibility for you as host

It sounds like a theme park may be suitable for an older age group

Goblinchild Sat 30-Oct-10 09:14:52

I think you need another couple of adults, are the other parents happy with the ratio?

But I also think that the mother should pay for the two adult tickets if she's inviting herself and her DH along.

thisisyesterday Sat 30-Oct-10 09:15:17

i would let ds1 go without me if there was 1 adult to 2 children, AND if it was someone he knew

SuePurblybilt Sat 30-Oct-10 09:16:31

Again, I wouldn't be letting DD (4) go alone but I would pay for my own ticket. Unless you've agreed with someone that they're "on duty" with you in which case I guess you should pay.
Is she not taking the piss a bit taking DH along as well? I do hope you reply to the email saying that you're only paying for the children but that she's welcome to tag along. You don't want resentment on the day that you were cornered into paying for two more tickets.

GivesHeadlessHorseman Sat 30-Oct-10 09:17:35

Are you sure they are expecting you to pay for them? Do they not just mean could you book their tickets for them?

I think for four/five year olds it's a very long day and a very big place for just 1:4 supervision ratio. these places can be a nightmare - so easy to get separated, and it's not like children that ages can ring you on their mobile!

loubielou31 Sat 30-Oct-10 09:17:38

Explain that it is a special deal for the ten tickets and an extra two tickets would be a lot more money, They are of course welcome to come and supervise their child if they with but will have to pay for their own tickets. Don't dress it up, don't apologise, just state it as a fact and see what they do.

However, I have to say why on earth do you think taking eight reception children to a theme park is a good idea? It is my idea of hell and I expect you will be glad of extra pair of hands, although you would be better off with ones you've chosen yourself, eg an aunt / grandma. One of you will always have to wait off the rides with those that don't want to go on them, someone will always need the loo at the wrong moment etc

FiveGoMadInDorset Sat 30-Oct-10 09:18:36

She should pay but like others I wouldn't let my 4 year old go to a theme park with 7 other children and only 2 adults

SocialButterfly Sat 30-Oct-10 09:19:13

I dont think its so much about the ratio of adults to children, although the amount you have at the moment is not enough imo. Its more that there is a lot of scope to lose a child, for them to be scared, feel pressure to go on rides they dont want to etc if parents arent around, its difficult if your child is quite confident but not all children are and I think a trip like that could be quite stressful for a 4/5 yr old. Its a lovely idea though and in a couple of years I think parents will be much more relaxed about it.

mummynumber2 Sat 30-Oct-10 09:19:30

Do you have to invite so many children. For my dss's 7th birthday we went to a theme park but only invited 2 of his friends, which he was very happy about. We figured that we could cope with that many but no more! Don't forget some 4 or 5 year olds can get very tired on a big day out....

Rosieeo Sat 30-Oct-10 09:19:39

When I say theme park, it's aimed specifically at young children, not an Alton Towers type experience. I had planned on 'tagging' them all as a precaution.

I mentioned it during school gate chat last week - I know most of the mums in question quite well, although I wouldn't describe them as close friends - and no one seemed concerned. Maybe I didn't make the numbers clear enough.

mjinhiding Sat 30-Oct-10 09:21:01

Message withdrawn

AreYouAZombieNoImArfasleep Sat 30-Oct-10 09:21:26

Agree with Goblinchild, 2 adults to 8 children not enough IMO, BUT other parents should def pay for themselves, if my DS was going I'd prob want to go too, theme park for 4/5 yr olds quite major trip (even if only 30mins drive) but I would pay for myself. You need to let her know that you'll pay for the children but not accompanying adults.

SuePurblybilt Sat 30-Oct-10 09:21:55

Maybe they've all assumed they're coming!
Can't you go with your initial plan and send an invite making the ratio clear and saying that parents are welcome. Make it clear that you are paying a group rate and providing children's food but not adult tickets or lager grin.

SocialButterfly Sat 30-Oct-10 09:22:01

Also I dont know what theme park it is but a lot of rides state that if child is under a certain height they must be accompanied by an adult ( this happened to our 6 yr old at legoland) so you will be there all day with one adult waiting off the ride and one taking them on one at a time.

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