Destination Weddings

Best Friend(MOH) can't afford to go to my destination wedding!

I'm really bummed..My best friend told me today she can't afford to go to my wedding in Vegas because of her student loans. She's my only real girl friend i have. I'm super bummed about this. I thought about paying for her because i really want her there. But Me and my fiance haven't even booked our own flight yet. Please help!

Re: Best Friend(MOH) can't afford to go to my destination wedding!

  • Unfortunately, when you have a DW, you risk that a lot of your guests will decline. It's always recommended that you check with your VIPs first before planning if you feel very strongly about certain people being present. Some people would change their wedding plans to ensure a VIP could attend, some would offer to pay, or some would just go forward without the person. It's really up to you on how you should handle it in your situation. Offering to pay is nice, but be sure to not offend others who may also not be able to attend due to cost.


  • Yes, unfortunately this is one of the major risks in having a destination wedding. You have to decide what is most important to you, including attendees. I verified with my VIPs before planning a destination wedding, but even so I am still risking some of them not attending for one reason or another. If your best friend's attendance is important to you, I recommend looking at the cost of footing the bill and seeing if it will fit into your budget. 
  • princessleia22princessleia22 Oceanfront Property in Arizona member
    Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 1000 Comments First Answer

    Like others said, that's a risk with destination weddings. We had a cruise wedding and checked with our VIP's, showing them itineraries and expenses, before making any real commitments or booking anything.  We were prepared to scrape the cruise wedding idea, or even the destination wedding in general, in any of our VIP's couldn't come. A couple months after booking everything, DH's best man (the only friend he even invited to the wedding) says he can't afford the trip.  Luckily, since we did embarkation wedding (on ship before it left port), we could have guests attend wedding without sailing on cruise.  So, he ended up coming by himself (left his wife & 4 kids at home) and just came to the port city for 1 night to attend the wedding. He stayed at a different (cheaper) hotel than us.  And we paid for his suit for the wedding to help offset some of his expenses. So, we didn't exactly pay for his trip, but helped figure out ways to reduce the expenses and helped out where we could, so he could be there.

    If it's really important to you to have her there, look at what compromises can be made to reduce costs. And maybe come up with some creative solutions. And you may want/need to help her financially, if you are able to. Are there discount airlines that go there from your city?  Does she have frequent flyer miles she can use? My MIL got a Southwest Airlines credit card when we started planning our wedding, and by the time she booked flights, she was able to get 5 round trip plane tickets for free.  Maybe you even get one to use for your wedding expenses (pay it off each month), then use the miles to buy her ticket? 

    How far away is she from Vegas?  Would there be other people interested in driving and carpooling to save them all some money?  We had a lot of people drive to our wedding, most around 1,000 miles, because they could drive 6 people in one car a lot cheaper than buying 6 plane tickets. And with multiple adults, they were able to switch of driving and drive straight through without stopping at hotels along the way. If you & FI haven't bought tickets yet, maybe this is even an option for you... it's also easier to take dress & wedding stuff in car rather than dragging it through an airport. It could be a fun pre-wedding road trip, and if you switch off driving it may not take too long.

    There are some cheaper hotels, especially if you get off the strip, or some good promotional deals sometimes. Is there someone (a single aunt or whatever) she can share a hotel room with and split cost?  Even if she sleeps on the floor or a cot for a night or two.

    And if there really isn't any way to get her there, maybe look at alternatives so she can still participate.  Maybe set up to Skype the wedding, so she can see it in real time.  There are places you can rent video streaming setup, or your venue may offer it.  Or, especially if it's just for one person, have someone in the front row hold a cell phone with her on Skype or Facetime.


  • That's totally up to you but I know I couldnt get married without my two best friends (MOHS). If I knew they couldnt afford it I would either change my plans or just have immediate family or elope and have a party when I got back. I could never pick anyone else to stand up with us though...Good luck!
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