I've been invited to a wedding of a close friend. I "RSVP'd" verbally, because of course I would go to her wedding. After saying yes, I found out that the ceremony will be family-only and friends are only invited to the following reception where they are charging guests $75 per person for dinner! I'm somewhat horrified, because I've been planning my own wedding and not once have I considered charging my guests for anything.
I'm a bit choked because 1) I won't get to see the ceremony and 2) we're pretty much in the same boat financially so being charged $150 to attend a fancy dinner seems entirely rude, if not a little hurtful. Also, I would normally give a couple getting married $150 as a gift ... but now that I'm being charged the same amount for dinner, another $150 for a gift is a little unfeasible. The wedding is also out-of-town, so we'll have travel costs to cover as well.
I'm looking for some advice on how to handle this. Do we attend and just not give a gift outside of a card? Suck it up and charge things to my credit card so we can attend and give a gift? Or take back my RSVP and not attend?