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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?

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.

ReginaldBlinker Thu 03-Oct-13 21:18:16

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...

CurlyhairedAssassin Thu 03-Oct-13 22:34:16

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.

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