How to Say You Can't Afford to Be in the Wedding
NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- If you've been asked to attend or be part of a friend's wedding, you know how expensive it can get. From the cost of the dress or tuxedo rental to the flight or hotel rooms, it can turn into a $2,000 weekend before you know it. If money is tight and you just can't swing the cost, there are ways to break it to the bride and groom while keeping the relationship intact.
Clarify what's expected of you
Don't say "no" without asking if there are ways you can make it work, says Cathleya Schroeckenstein, editor in chief of WeddingBee.com.
"Ask the bride what her honest expectations are of you, and sit down together to look at the numbers," she says.For example, you may find out that it's possible for you to attend the wedding by sharing a hotel room, or that the bride and groom are hiring a bus to take everyone to the wedding venue. If you discover you're going to need a plane ticket or a hotel room for several nights, though, it's easier for you to explain that that the money simply isn't in your budget. "No one wants someone grumpy at their wedding, moping around all weekend because they spent too much money," says Meg Keene, founder and editor in chief of website A Practical Wedding and author of a book by the same name. "Take a look at how much it's going to cost. The worst thing that can happen is that you go into debt trying to make it work." A weekend for a couple attending a wedding that involves travel and hotel stays can easily exceed $2,000, Keene cautions. Especially if you're asked to be in the bridal party, you'll need to find out what added costs you may incur. "The dress, travel, hair, makeup, nails, bachelorette parties, bridal showers, etc., all add up over time and should be considered in the overall cost of participating," warns Jessica Lehry Bishop, founder and editor of The Budget Savvy Bride. Choose your words carefully Don't make the couple feel like their wedding is an imposition, Keene cautions.
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