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View Full Version : ARGH Budget Buster... Being In A Friends Wedding


Trinity524
06-21-2011, 07:42 AM
Now, this is going to sound bad, but I understand it's mostly due to timing. One of my girlfriends I know for ten years now is getting married. First wedding and she's 39. She wants it all... I can understand, who wouldn't. She calls me in December and asks me to be in the wedding. I accept. It was supposed to be in March, but she calls in Feb and says they have to move it to September as most vendors can't do it that quick.

Here's the budget buster:

#1- I no longer live in Jax, FL. 262 in airfare. 112 in a rental car/50 on gas. 200 on hotel room.
#2- 150 on a dress I will never wear again. She wants us to wear silver heels (30). Hair 40.
#3- Bachlorette Party... I don't even know yet ;(
#4- Eating out for the 4 days I will be there.

All of that and guess what... it's the weekend before I go to Disney. ;(

I know it sounds horrible... but am up to almost 1000 dollars. I love her, but I never realized how expensive being in someone else's wedding could be.

Swimalie
06-21-2011, 08:00 AM
Is there any way you can room with any other town bridesmaids? Or share a car with one of them? Or get a hotel that has free breakfast and a mini fridge so you can eat in the room more?

HockeyMomNH
06-21-2011, 08:06 AM
Could you tweek the Disney dates to combine the two trips? That could save you some money in airfare if you are planning to fly to FL twice.

ccgirl
06-21-2011, 08:14 AM
Could you tweek the Disney dates to combine the two trips? That could save you some money in airfare if you are planning to fly to FL twice.

I just have to say your cakes are AMAZING! Do you make them yourself?

To the OP - yes, it is very expensive to be in the wedding. Especially when you live out of state. My SiL had to back out of being in one because she could no longer afford it (they were buying a house and needed a certain $$ down). The bride totally understood and had her do a reading instead.

Good luck with your decision.

GatorMama
06-21-2011, 08:23 AM
1. If you have lived in Jax before, and that's where the wedding is, then surely you know someone you can stay with, if not for all of the time, then at least part of it.
2. $150 is not an expensive bridesmaids dress... and $30 for shoes is CHEAP. Maybe discuss with her that you don't have the money for having your hair done professionally though. I think brides can decide what a bridesmaid/maid of honor wears is one thing but to tell them they have to have their hair and nails done is overboard unless they're the ones paying for it.
3. I would think you'd be part of the planning of the bachelorette party. It doesn't have to be expensive to have fun. Mine was pretty much just an old school slumber party. We did go out to dinner and a bar, but we're there long because that's not my kind of scene. I doubt the entire thing cost $150 TOTAL for the girls to put together and I think they shared the costs.
4. Who says you have to eat OUT the whole time you're there? Buy a loaf of bread and some peanut butter and a bag of apples. Maybe a yogurt if you have a fridge available. Hopefully you'll be fed for free for the rehearsal and wedding reception. Two meals you won't need to pay for. Why four days? Most of my wedding party arrived on Thursday night or Friday morning. I took them out to lunch and to get our nails done (which I paid for) and then we went to the rehearsal/rehearsal dinner. Wedding was Saturday night. Most left Sunday morning.

mom2princesss
06-21-2011, 08:49 AM
I would either be honest with her and tell her you can't afford it and send a great gift, or I'd make it work.

There is no need to be there for 4 days. I had a destination wedding and everyone arrived the day before or day of the wedding and left the next day. If you lived in Jax before do you know someone you could spend a night or two with?

The dress you can consign right after the wedding and get a little money back. You can find silver shoes anywhere, you don't all have to wear the same shoes. Payless usually has them for $10-15.

I'd skip the bachlorette party. You'll be there for the rehearsal and wedding.

If it is the weekend before your disney trip, can you tweek your dates so that you just go to orlando right after the wedding?

kimkoz
06-21-2011, 08:54 AM
Unfortunately being in a wedding is expensive, plan and simple. It sucks but its something we do. After reading I would suggest the same others have

Rooms - Sharing with other bridesmaids. I had all my out of town bridesmaids spend the night at my house the night before and then they shared the night of the wedding. I also didn't tell them at all where to stay, find whatever works...

Car - Why, I'm sure in town family or other bridesmaids would be happy to help carpool. The day of the wedding I'm sure there is transportation.

Food - If you go up the day before, I'm sure you'll have a rehearsal dinner, then the wedding dinner.. so really could just be a quick breakfast and maybe a lunch to pay for. ** I got married right out of college and knew my friends didn't have the money.. for all food was covered the whole weekend.. I really think most people do it even if money wasn't a problem. Normally we host a Thursday show up bbq after the guys get thier tuxs... Friday is lunch as a thank you from me,, then dinner is rehearsal,, then sat is the wedding and there is always tons of food. Breakfast while hair is done and dinner of course.

Dress - I have to say too, 150 isn't bad. I know it seems like alot with vacation but be thankful, thats not alot anymore.. Don't forget alterations, go to a local place or friend to save some $$.. Shoes - ask around, maybe you can find a friend that has a pair already. You have time to search around for deals.

Suggestions - Talk to the bride and just be honest. Maybe you just can't attend the bachlorette party, its not the end of the world. I've been in weddings and not attended - for location and pregnancy related reasons.

All you can do is talk to the bride about your concerns. I'm sure between her and the local famil they can help.. If she wants you in it she'll help. It's a honor to be in someones wedding but it doesn't mean you need to go broke. I'm sure she can work things out to make this a little cheaper for you, if not just attend as a friend.

maggiew
06-21-2011, 09:02 AM
Things to do to try to get the costs down:

1. Find another bridesmaid and try to share hotel room and/or rental car.
2. Skip the bachelorette party if its expensive.
3. Try to find an old friend in JAX that you can stay with.
4. Ask the bride if someone in the family could put you up for a few nights. I know I would be willing to host a bridesmaid if I was a relative (sister, mom, aunt, etc.) of the bride. I'd even throw in the food!!

I would definitely look into combining the wedding and Disney trip if possible. That way you are only paying the one airfare.

Good luck.

Maggie

ilovemk76
06-21-2011, 09:23 AM
Now, this is going to sound bad, but I understand it's mostly due to timing. One of my girlfriends I know for ten years now is getting married. First wedding and she's 39. She wants it all... I can understand, who wouldn't. She calls me in December and asks me to be in the wedding. I accept. It was supposed to be in March, but she calls in Feb and says they have to move it to September as most vendors can't do it that quick.

Here's the budget buster:

#1- I no longer live in Jax, FL. 262 in airfare. 112 in a rental car/50 on gas. 200 on hotel room.
#2- 150 on a dress I will never wear again. She wants us to wear silver heels (30). Hair 40.
#3- Bachlorette Party... I don't even know yet ;(
#4- Eating out for the 4 days I will be there.

All of that and guess what... it's the weekend before I go to Disney. ;(

I know it sounds horrible... but am up to almost 1000 dollars. I love her, but I never realized how expensive being in someone else's wedding could be.

You gave her your word so now you have to figure out how to make it work. The wedding is two months away. You cannot back out now. When she moved the wedding was when you had to decide if you could still do September.

How would you have felt is your bridemaid pulled out because of the cost but a week later took a vacation near to where the wedding was?:confused3

KELLY
06-21-2011, 09:24 AM
Yes it is expensive. Can you downgrade your hotel at dinsey to make up some of the extra expenses ?

The dress and shoes seem like a reasonable price to pay. Maybe you can do your own hair?

tlbwriter
06-21-2011, 09:33 AM
#3- Bachlorette Party... I don't even know yet ;(


Tell whoever is in charge that you are under SERIOUS budget constraints and won't be able to contribute more than X toward the party.

scrapquitler
06-21-2011, 10:12 AM
I know it sounds horrible... but am up to almost 1000 dollars. I love her, but I never realized how expensive being in someone else's wedding could be.

Very true. I have to REALLY love some one to agree to be in the wedding.

Maybe you can find a way to save some money in all this...perhaps you can do your own hair at least? Find someone to share the hotel room with, or stay at a friends house instead? Eat on the cheap while you are there (cook in the hotel room stop to visit every friend/family in town and eat with them?) Can you skip the Bachelorette party because you live out of town?

we3peas
06-21-2011, 10:16 AM
I understand this is her 1st wedding but having lived a little longer before getting married should help her to be understanding about the costs for others.

You should have begged off when she changed the date but you didn't. You are now committed to it. You now have to have a conversation with her about expenses.

Maybe she knows someone else who needs help and you can split expenses. I've seen many weddings where the bridesmaids wear different dresses from each other but from the same shade. See if she is open to that, but remember it is the couple's wedding not yours. Shoes don't have to match either. Anything silver is fine, Payless sells those. Beg off from the bachlorette party. I never had one and did not miss it either. If I was the bride I would feel sorry you couldn't make it but I would understand. Find someone to stay with or Priceline your hotel to make it cheaper.

wide awake
06-21-2011, 11:28 AM
I would just tell her w/ the change of dates you can't do it. I would do this asap so she has time to get a replacement. I would hope a 39 year old woman would understand financial responsibility. I wouldn't downgrade my vacation, I am assuming others are going w/ you so how fair is that to them?

justintime
06-21-2011, 11:40 AM
I would imagine you will also have the expense of a bridal shower, which I have found to be a bigger budget buster than the bachelorette party.

luvmy3
06-21-2011, 12:01 PM
I would just tell her w/ the change of dates you can't do it. I would do this asap so she has time to get a replacement. I would hope a 39 year old woman would understand financial responsibility. I wouldn't downgrade my vacation, I am assuming others are going w/ you so how fair is that to them?

The OP said that the change of date was made in February, its too late to use that as an excuse. I think its too late to back out now anyway, but if you can't afford it then you can't afford it.
(although I don't recall the OP saying she wanted to back out, or can't afford it, she's just venting that it cost alot more than she thought)

mhsjax
06-21-2011, 12:19 PM
You gave her your word so now you have to figure out how to make it work. The wedding is two months away. You cannot back out now. When she moved the wedding was when you had to decide if you could still do September.

How would you have felt is your bridemaid pulled out because of the cost but a week later took a vacation near to where the wedding was?:confused3

Yes, she told her she would do it, however, the bride changed the date. If her vacation was planned first well then too bad. I wouldn't think anything of a friend that pulled out because she had a family vacation planned first. Sorry but my family comes first.

I do see now that the bride called in Feb to notify the OP of the change, that changes the way I feel about it. I think you just need to find a way to cut your expenses for the wedding, but I would never down grade MY vacation, so I could be in someone else's wedding.

crashbb
06-21-2011, 12:48 PM
Yes, she told her she would do it, however, the bride changed the date. If her vacation was planned first well then too bad. I wouldn't think anything of a friend that pulled out because she had a family vacation planned first. Sorry but my family comes first.

I do see now that the bride called in Feb to notify the OP of the change, that changes the way I feel about it. I think you just need to find a way to cut your expenses for the wedding, but I would never down grade MY vacation, so I could be in someone else's wedding.

I'm not picking on you, you're just the last person to mention the date change.

The bride moved the wedding LATER (not earlier). If finances weren't a concern for March, why would they be for September? That's an extra 6 months to save the money. I get that the wedding is now close to the time of the vacation, but that doesn't change the amount needed for either event - it is not like only money made X weeks before the event can be spent on the event.

NYEmomma
06-21-2011, 01:10 PM
I agree with the PPs that said it's too late to back out... it's a pretty big commitment to make & one that I think you make KNOWING that it's going to be quite an expense. If you don't think you'll have the money for it, say that in the very beginning. There's certainly nothing wrong with not being able to afford it. It happens to us all. I'm sure the bride would understand. But IMO, it's too late for that at this point.

I think PPs have made some GREAT cost-saving suggestions. Buy your shoes at Payless or Walmart or at a consignment/thrift store. Skip the bachelorette party (that should cut down on the duration of your stay as well). Share a rental car/hotel room with other bridesmaid's. Tell the bride that you can't afford to pay for hair & nails and will do it yourself. I think in that respect, the bride's GOT to be accommodating. It's just a hair-do. If she's set on having it done by a specific person then she should be willing to pay for it. I'm sure you are perfectly capable of doing your own hair & nails and looking fabulous.

bumbershoot
06-21-2011, 02:27 PM
I love her, but I never realized how expensive being in someone else's wedding could be.


Oh yes, it can be difficult and expsensive!

If you can wear any sort of silver heel (don't have to match) and you haven't bought them yet...and if a size 9M would work, I have a pair of maybe 2 inch "mule" style (you slip your foot in) strappy sandal-ish silver heels. I'll never wear them again (they were for a wedding).


Is there ANY way to move your trip so it starts just after the wedding and you're already down there?

Hair...one one of my bridesmaids had her hair (and makeup) done at the salon with me. Everyone else did each other's hair, and then left to go to the mall to get their makeup done at the MAC counter. And I'd asked them to have their hair done at the salon...but just b/c the bride asks doesn't meant b'maids have to do it!

Karenj2
06-21-2011, 03:19 PM
I'm not picking on you, you're just the last person to mention the date change.

The bride moved the wedding LATER (not earlier). If finances weren't a concern for March, why would they be for September? That's an extra 6 months to save the money. I get that the wedding is now close to the time of the vacation, but that doesn't change the amount needed for either event - it is not like only money made X weeks before the event can be spent on the event.

I could be completely wrong, but I think the OP just recently moved to San Antonio from Jax, so when the wedding was originally planned, she would have been a local, and wouldn't have had the hotel/car expenses. (The rest of it would have been the same, though...)

OP, you've gotten some good advice - good luck!

*Seanaci*
06-21-2011, 03:28 PM
I'm guessing you've been planning your Disney trip for a while. She called you back in Feb to let you know of the date change. Unless everything is already paid for (and you're now having to move your flight/car rental/hotel room to Sept for the wedding) I would kindly bow out.

If your friend understands, it should be a huge issue. If she's not understanding, well, that is her issue. It's unfortunate that they had to change the wedding date.

Good luck!

crashbb
06-21-2011, 03:32 PM
I could be completely wrong, but I think the OP just recently moved to San Antonio from Jax, so when the wedding was originally planned, she would have been a local, and wouldn't have had the hotel/car expenses. (The rest of it would have been the same, though...)

OP, you've gotten some good advice - good luck!

Good theory, but I had to go look at old posts (curiosity killed the cat - I know). There are posts from last year and she was in Texas then - so the move did not happen between March and now.

seashoreCM
06-21-2011, 03:39 PM
I would imagine you will also have the expense of a bridal shower, which I have found to be a bigger budget buster than the bachelorette party.
You do not have to take a group to dinner or throw the shower or arrange the bachelorette party or "do" "a chunk" of the wedding. All you need to be is a guest.

It is now too late to back out because the time or place was changed. You would have had to back out almost immediately after you got wind of the change.

POOHsie
06-21-2011, 03:40 PM
My DD was selected to be a Bridesmaid, then soon after that, her DH got a new job and they moved across the country. She realized at that point, with getting a new job for herself, moving expenses, cost to go to the wedding with hotel and food, time away from new job, etc., that it was way over her financial ability. She bowed out, but sent a nice gift. There weren't any hard feelings.

mhsjax
06-21-2011, 06:33 PM
I'm not picking on you, you're just the last person to mention the date change.

The bride moved the wedding LATER (not earlier). If finances weren't a concern for March, why would they be for September? That's an extra 6 months to save the money. I get that the wedding is now close to the time of the vacation, but that doesn't change the amount needed for either event - it is not like only money made X weeks before the event can be spent on the event.

WEll color me stupid. I wasn't even thinking that way. I just saw changed the date and with the OP stating not being able to afford it, I didn't even pay attention to the dates. You are right, it is more time to save money.

tinatark
06-21-2011, 07:17 PM
Airfare is probably the only non-negotiable price you listed. My family is all in Jacksonville, and we travel there frequently.

I get my hotels via priceline - never more than $50/night for a 3* - we've gotten Aloft, Crowne Plaza, Marriott and Hyatt Place.

Rental car - I've used priceline, but Advantage Car Rental is a division of Hertz and has awesome rates - I rented a 2011 Mustang for a day when we were there during Thanksgiving for $25.

It really doesn't have to be as expensive as it seems!

crashbb
06-21-2011, 07:23 PM
WEll color me stupid. I wasn't even thinking that way. I just saw changed the date and with the OP stating not being able to afford it, I didn't even pay attention to the dates. You are right, it is more time to save money.

I thought maybe I was missing something obvious, since so many people were commenting on the date change being a problem.

aprilgail2
06-21-2011, 08:14 PM
I would imagine you will also have the expense of a bridal shower, which I have found to be a bigger budget buster than the bachelorette party.

oh yea! As I was reading her list I thought right away of the shower which easily costs over $1000.00. Hopefully the wedding party is REALLY big so it gets divided up among a lot of them!

Trinity524
06-22-2011, 07:17 AM
OP here. I bought my original ticket for airfare by Priceline NYOP, and got burned there. So while the extra time was wonderful, I was already out of pocket 250.

I have been in TX for six years. So, I am just venting because I imagined this at a different price. Seems like everything changed, even little things such as, you can stay with me to save money and I will pick you up to I am working the day you come in and then the request for us to all stay at the beach. As for the other girls involved to share a room or car, I don't know them and I haven't heard from the matron of honor for the shower or bachlorette party. Luckily I am coming in Thursday and leaving Sunday, even though that is 9/11 (yikes)

Because it's near my Disney trip, I can't take two weeks off from work and my husband can't change his dates off.

While I understand that the costs associated should have been known to me before, I wasn't fully thinking at the time of accepting. I hope this helps someone budget in the future for the out of state weddings.

Frustrating, but if you love someone, you will find a way :)

tink2dw
06-22-2011, 08:26 AM
Is the Wedding on the Beach?? If not choose a cheap hotel near the venue.

Ask the Bride to arrange for one of the other brides maids or a friend to pick you up at the airport. She can't leave you stuck at the airport after you have gone to the expense of getting there!! Come on she has to know someone who can pick you up!!!! There needs to be some one to greet you and explain the schedule!!

And ask the bride to query the other brides maids to see if any want to share a room to cut costs. Pack food you can eat, nuts, energy bars, pop tarts and such.

The Dress and shoes should have already been purchased. like your airfare.

If you do need to go to get hair and nails, just get your own nails polished that will cut down on that cost. Check online for coupons for the area for hotels, food, ans salons.

tlbwriter
06-22-2011, 08:29 AM
Don't be afraid to say "I'm sorry, I can't afford that." The bride wants you all to stay on the beach? Yes, it sounds nice, but you're sorry, you can't afford it. Etc.

sweetsusannah
06-22-2011, 08:32 AM
I symphatize with the OP here. I know weddings are special but it costs so much to participate. When you are trying to stick to a monthly budget it makes it even harder. My DH, DD, and I were asked to participate in my SIL's wedding. She asked all her siblings and everyone said yes so we felt obligated plus we love her and want to help make her day special. With airfare, dressses/tux, and accomodations it is costing us almost as much as the small wedding my husband and I had ourselves. $2800 so far. Every week we get another email requesting us to be part of a new shower or party. It's tough and we are the only single income family out of my husband's large family so we don't get much in the understanding a limited budget department, they just think we're cheapos.