Pre-wedding Parties

Rehearsal dinner etiquette

My FMIL has offered to pay for the rehearsal dinner. We are planning on having it at a restaurant near the rehearsal location which we have already put a non-refundable deposit down for a private room. Cost is about $20 a person and we will have between 30 and 40 people attending. We have invited all of the significant others but FMIL just got laid off and is worried she now can't afford to pay for everyone. The FI and I don't think that we will be able to cover the cost of it either. Would it be rude to offer to pay for only the wedding party and ask significant others to pay for their own meals if they would like to attend? They won't be at the rehearsal so they would then just have the option of whether or not they wanted to meet us for dinner. Is there another option that I'm missing?

Re: Rehearsal dinner etiquette

  • edited December 2011
    Is there anyway you can do a potluck or have in someone's backyard? I've heard of some having casual BBQ after rehearsal. You would be out your deposit, but at $20/person you would be saving money in the end. I'm sure that doesn't include drinks.
  • banana468banana468 member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited December 2011

    It's really extremely rude to as the SOs to pay for their dinner.  IMO, it's as rude as not inviting them.

    I understand that this is a tricky situation so is there any other way that you can cut back?  Can you figure out how much the dinner and drinks will cost and then see if you could scale back flowers or day of transportation to make it fit?

  • edited December 2011
    I agree that it is rude to pay for some but not others.  I think you should look into another location for a cheaper price.
  • danieliza1127danieliza1127 member
    10000 Comments 5 Love Its Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    I would find another place to have it.  You could go to someone's house and order pizzas, or just go to a pizza joint or some less expensive restaurant and then split the cost between yourselves and your FMIL. 

    Also, the RD isn't for another 5 months.  Surely you can save up the money by then or hopefully she'll have a new job by then.
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  • trix1223trix1223 member
    5000 Comments 25 Love Its Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    No, you really can't ask anyone else to pay for a dinner that you invite them to.  I'd recommend changing your RD to something much more cost-friendly.  A pot luck, a pizza and beer gathering in your backyard, or something like that.  I know you'll lose a deposit, but if you can't save the money for the original plan, it's better to lose the deposit than to spend $$ you don't have.
    "Trix, it's what they/our parents wanted. Why so judgemental? And why is your wedding date over a year and a half ago? And why do you not have a groom's name? And why have you posted over 12,000 posts? And why do you always say mean things to brides?" palegirl146
  • edited December 2011
    Yes it would be rude.  

    there is no reason for a rehersal dinner to be a big deal.  Pizza or a backyard bbq is fine and often more fun relaxing day before a wedding.  
  • edited December 2011
    I posted something similar on my local board today. I'm asking if it's a "must" that we include guests of the bridal party at the dinner. I'll let you know what feedback I get. My FH wants to invite the bridal party and immediate family only. It makes sense, I just don't know if it's right to do.
  • banana468banana468 member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited December 2011
    It IS a must that you include guests of the BP at the RD.  To do anything less is really rude.


  • edited December 2011
    I agree that you may need to find another place because if you don't have the money, you don't have it; however, speak to the restaurant staff about the situation. Maybe they offer a buffet option that is cheaper than the $20 price or maybe they can work another arrangement with you. Communicate with them and they may be able to make the original plan happen. The worst they can say is "no" and you lose the deposit and find another place.  Don't let the deposit which is a sunk cost (you can't get it back any way) affect your decision too much.
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