DW: how much time is expected with friends and family??

I am starting to feel uneasy about the time and events we've decided to spend with family and friends who are travelling to our DW.
this is what we are thinking:
1) Dinner the evening before wedding
2) ceremony & reception
3) Dinner the day after the wedding
(all of these would be paid for by us)

family & friends are travelling about 10-12 hrs from Toronto to Maui to attend the wedding. should we consider dedicating more than 3 days to them?? - pls be honest.
(btw, the group is about 20ppl)

our issue is that it is not within our budget to pay for additional events (aside from the 3 listed above) and we dont feel that we can organize a group event without having to pay for it (because more than half the guest are immediate family).

is it better to:
A) spend more than 3 days with guests and not pay for it or
B) leave after the 3 days and our guests would spend the rest of their vacation time on their own?
(seeing that it is a 10-12 hr flight for them, we are assuming that all guests who come will be in the mindset that this is also THEIR vacation)

A) or B)?
Posted on March 2, 2008 at 12:02 pm
ms.hazelton
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(10) Comments

pinkgerbers
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07/26/2008
pinkgerbers

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I think you need the spend the amount of time iwth them that feels right to you. That being said, I do NOT believe that you need to pay for other events. We are having several no-host events, including a day on the beach. We are meeting people there and if they choose to buy food, etc., that is on them. I am listing those events as being no-host. I am attending a destination wedding in Cabo, and they are have a no-host deep sea fishing day, day at the pool, golfing with the groom, and a day at the beach. They list each activity as being no-host and the price. We have chosen to attend some and not others and did not feel offended at all. Check out Lori Decter's info. She did a good job of listing that kind of information on her website for a Hawaii wedding.
Posted on March 2, 2008 at 12:57 pm
married2mrwright
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09/29/2007
married2mrwright

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married2mrwright

In the last thread you started about DW other events, I detailed what we had planned for/with our 21 guests over the week in Kauai. And also how I presented the optional activities to them.



http://www.projectwedding.com/post/list/destination-wedding-other-events-for-guests


That said, I hope that it didn't come across that you shouldn't organize events unless you can host (pay) for them! Quite the opposite, actually! Why do you feel that you have to pay for other events that you organize? No one expects that, I am sure!

What is nice though (for your guests and also for you and your FI) is to have some stuff organized so that you're not pulled in 20 directions. Your guests will definitely want to hang out with you guys before, during and after the wedding, whether you're paying for it or not! Seriously! They'e all coming to Hawaii to do so.



What I wanted to avoid was spending time (and stress) once we were in Kauai trying to plan things and arrange activities and see everyone. So by having pre-planned activities, it gave us a gameplan. And guests could pick and chose what they wanted to participate in (not everyone did each and every thing, but they all had the invite and option to do so.)



The three things that you are hosting is plenty! That said, how about organizing a snorkel day or hike or whatever? Just say....on such and such day at such and such time we'll be sunning and swimming at XYZ Beach. That's free! And people can join you (or not). If there are some activities such as sail cruise or horseback riding, etc. that you and your FI want to do, then you can book yourselves and just share the information with your guests so that if they want to join you, they can (unless you want to do those things alone). People are going to want to take you to dinner, meet for breakfast, hang out on the beach, sight-see and shop, etc. All with you two! For sure, no doubt.



We had three days on the island before the wedding (including the day we arrived) and three days after the wedding (including the day we departed) and spent each day with our guests. Not every hour of every day, of course, but we expected that we'd be visiting with them the entire time we were in Kauai. The majority of the time there was anywere from 8-15 of us doing stuff together. We also knew we'd have time to ourselves during the 5 days we spent in Maui. So...if you can, I'd say plan on spending some time, everyday, with your guests. If you can organize/plan some activities, you'll save yourself some stress once you're on the island.
Posted on March 2, 2008 at 1:02 pm
ms.hazelton
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ms.hazelton

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ms.hazelton

thanks again for your advice Lori - and pinkgergbers.
Lori, your site detailing your plans were extremely helpful and i've looked into several sailing, snorkeling events available on Maui.

after speaking with my FI about all of this, he didnt feel comfortable spending time with our immediate family without paying for it. i guess it may be traditional thinking, but its hard to "split the bill" when we are sitting with our families at dinner. one of our parents would probably want to pick it up and we dont want to impose a bill of 12-16ppl on them.
that said, the day events (sailing etc) would be easier to organize and have people pay their own. even so, it creates awkwardness we think.

at this time, we are thinking of spending 3 days with our guest via the above 3 events and then leaving Maui to go on our HM to another island.

is it better to A) spend more than 3 days with guests and not pay for it or B) leave after the 3 days and our guests would spend the rest of their vacation time on their own?
(seeing that it is a 10-12 hr flight for them, we are assuming that all guests who come will be in the mindset that this is also THEIR vacation)

A) or B)?
Posted on March 2, 2008 at 1:47 pm
theDame
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01/01/2008
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I totally understand your wanting to host, I feel the same way..... I think if you can enlist the help of someone else to plan a "no -host" activity for a 4th day; that'd be ideal... than you can spend 1 more day with everyone before heading off. If that's not comfortable than 3 days is probably enough!
Posted on March 2, 2008 at 4:35 pm
beatie
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10/11/2008
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I think if you word the events like "the bride and groom will be doing such and such on this date. If you would like to join them, they woujld love to see you!" My cousin got married in Kauai and a few days before the wedding, she attended a luau. She told people ahead of time that she and her husband-to-be were going to go to it and if guests wanted to join them, they would love to see them. She then gave details about the price, location, etc. That way, people understand that you're not hosting it and they have the option to attend or not attend. Also, if you're going to be spending time on the beach during the day, let your guests know where you'll be and when. It's a free activity and if they want to spend time with you, they can. Don't feel pressured to pay for everything. I think nowadays, when people attend weddings, destinations or not, they assume they'll be paying for stuff. Not many of us are millionaires! :) Maybe send out a wedding week itinerary to people ahead of time listing all that you and your FI will be doing. Whether it's relaxation time, dinners, getting a massage, finalizing reception details, or meeting with your officiant. I think people would be interested just to know what you guys will be doing leading up to your big day. That way, they can join you during the events that you want them to, but at the same time, they'll know how occupied you will be getting ready and won't pressure you to spend more time. Just a thought! :)
Posted on March 3, 2008 at 4:21 am
emssk8s
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04/11/2008
emssk8s

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I have a friend that did a maui wedding and they had people there and events going on for the whole week. They had site seeing tours and snorkeling planned and dinner the day after was acutally a B-b-q at their condo that they made themselves. They of course did not pay for everything but what I really liked more than anything was the little things like funny tid bits about people and the gift bags in our room and the best slideshow of old photos.

I think there are great ways to connect like that beyond just paying for stuff. While planning activities that you can attend is great but remember a few days before the wedding you are going to be super busy so you might not have the time to attend but all your guest could get together and get to know one another.

Good luck
Posted on March 3, 2008 at 9:18 am
married2mrwright
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09/29/2007
married2mrwright

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married2mrwright

I also wanted to add that maybe a friend or family member will "host" some events (not necessarily pay for them, but organized them)...

My mom organized a BBQ at her vacation rental and our friends all got together for drinks and lunch the afternoon that my DH and I were getting massages and having some alone time. The afternoon we had our TTD session, a bunch of our guests met up and went snorkeling. It was fun to see photos from the stuff we didn't do with them and of couse, it was fun to hang out and do "non-wedding" stuff like sailing and kayaking, etc.
Posted on March 3, 2008 at 10:01 am
married2mrwright
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married2mrwright

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married2mrwright

I also wanted to add that maybe a friend or family member will "host" some events (not necessarily pay for them, but organized them)...

My mom organized a BBQ at her vacation rental and our friends all got together for drinks and lunch the afternoon that my DH and I were getting massages and having some alone time. The afternoon we had our TTD session, a bunch of our guests met up and went snorkeling. It was fun to see photos from the stuff we didn't do with them and of couse, it was fun to hang out and do "non-wedding" stuff like sailing and kayaking, etc.
Posted on March 3, 2008 at 10:01 am
MarinBride
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MarinBride

We had the same debate and basically decided that less is more. I think it really depends on who your guests are and where your wedding is, but in our case, our guests are all very well-seasoned, self-sufficient travelers and will have cars of their own, so we figured they would rather explore on their own for the most part. We included an area map with our invitations with all of our favorite places clearly identified, and we did arrange a picnic for whomever wants to participate. But the rest of the weekend is unscheduled - we really wanted our wedding to be the main event.

I went to a DW in the Virgin Islands where the wedding was the ONLY scheduled event. Everyone met up at a restaurant/lounge the night before (unhosted) and a lot of the guests all hung out together at the same beach the morning of the wedding - and that was it. And it was lovely. And by contrast, I have a friend who planned all kinds of scheduled events for his wedding weekend, and a lot of the guests ended up skipping them because they got tired of schlepping from event to event! Weddings do not have to be the elaborate productions that people make them.
Posted on March 3, 2008 at 10:07 am
pookie
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06/01/2008
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Ms. Hazelton,
We struggled with this same issue before we decided to just stay home and host the wedding locally. I too, felt we should pay for the activities, but then it added up so quickly that we realized we couldn't afford it. I like your option B though. You'd be spending enough time with your family that they wouldn't feel like you are neglecting them. Yet, I think 3 days of activities are generous enough.
Posted on March 3, 2008 at 12:09 pm

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