Charging wedding guests, yes or no?

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Weddings & Anniversaries
35 replies 6.2K views
andyandnicoandyandnico Forumite
3 Posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Weddings & Anniversaries
Hello everyone.

I want a small wedding, only 30-40 people, and I'd like to keep it very simple, doing the catering ourselves, etc. Finding a venue seems impossible, though, everywhere is set up for much bigger groups, or won't let you cater yourself. We just can't afford it.

I've hit on the idea of hiring a country house where all my guests can stay, for say £2000, and then offering the rooms out at, for example, £100 each. That way, we make back some of the venue cost, and they don't have to worry about finding B&Bs nearby, taxis, etc.

On the one hand, that seems like a good deal for everyone . On the other, I worry it will seem like I'm asking my guests to pay for my wedding.

Any thoughts?
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Replies

  • Robin9Robin9 Forumite
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    Have you looked at village halls, community centres ?

    We hired a village hall, decorated it ourselves, local ladies did the catering.

    A wonderful occassion
    Never pay on an estimated bill
  • Torry_QuineTorry_Quine Forumite
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    That's a terrible idea, not least as £100 is expensive for one person to pay and I for one wouldn't pay that much.
    Lost my soulmate so life is empty.

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  • edited 9 July 2015 at 8:26PM
    firebird082firebird082 Forumite
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    edited 9 July 2015 at 8:26PM
    I think that's a really nice idea. There's lots of big houses around that rent out for large group accommodation. There's also options where there's a number of cottages very close to each other that together hold 30-40 people which works similarly. The only problem is getting people to agree and pay up-front. Suggest you speak to close family and see how they react...you'll need a decent percentage of the invitees on side right from the early stages of planning.

    Not to mention, I've ended up paying in the region of £100 to stay at hotels where friends have got married, so it doesn't seem unreasonable, given that they will be fed all meals (they will, I presume) etc.

    Village halls can be quite cheap, but may well be too large for 30-40 people. Try searching for venues without the word wedding in your search - you may well come across a lot of other options, although if you are having the legal ceremony at the venue rather than just the reception you are rather more limited. Check local council websites for the registered venues. Not all are ridiculous.
  • TigsteroonieTigsteroonie Forumite
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    "Please come to my wedding ... and pay £100 for the privilege". Don't think I'd be accepting the invitation, I'm afraid. I think you should have a wedding that you can afford, and change your search criteria if you can't find anything in your budget rather than expecting guests to contribute.
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  • edited 9 July 2015 at 8:30PM
    elsienelsien Forumite
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    edited 9 July 2015 at 8:30PM
    If I was planning on staying anyway I might consider it. I don't think it would feel as if I were paying for your wedding if I was doing the overnight. But £100 per person would probably be too much for me unless you were a close relative.
    The other thing you need to think about is what would you do if you book the place and most people choose to either go home or stay somewhere cheaper. Could you afford to make up the difference?

    Edit - just re-read your post about making a profit. I think you'd need to do a comparable rate to other local bed and breakfasts/ hotels, otherwise yes if would seem a bit cheeky.
    All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.

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  • PasturesNewPasturesNew Forumite
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    You should only do it if you can afford the house if everybody declines.

    Weddings are very expensive to attend and a lot of people grit their teeth when they feel they can't get out of it. Usually with accommodation they would feel quite free to book a room in the same hotel, or not, but your plan makes them feel even more obliged to pay more than they can afford to attend your event.

    You will be chattered about behind your back as those who can't afford it discuss it with those that really didn't want to afford it but didn't know how to say "no". They will also chatter about those who smugly could afford it and said "yes" and were telling everybody they're staying ....
  • Prothet_of_DoomProthet_of_Doom Forumite
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    If you are going to do it get the best man and maid of honour to do the emotional blackmail and arm-twisting and pretend it's an amazing surprise, you were not expecting.
  • McKneffMcKneff Forumite
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    I really wouldn't pay £200 (100 each) when there is probably a perfectly good premier inn for £29 nearby.


    I think your idea is dead in the water to be honest.
    make the most of it, we are only here for the weekend.
    and we will never, ever return.
  • arbrightonarbrighton Forumite
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    Hello everyone.

    I want a small wedding, only 30-40 people, and I'd like to keep it very simple, doing the catering ourselves, etc. Finding a venue seems impossible, though, everywhere is set up for much bigger groups, or won't let you cater yourself. We just can't afford it.

    On the one hand, that seems like a good deal for everyone . On the other, I worry it will seem like I'm asking my guests to pay for my wedding.

    Any thoughts?

    It's cheeky, they will be your guests, you want them there so cut your cloth accordingly. You could spend 2k on a really lovely dinner in a restaurant, and the bare minimum on the registry office bit. Our actual marriage was £70 to give notice, £120 for room hire in an approved venue (to seat 70) and £350 for the registrar. Would have been cheaper in the registry office but it's just not a nice place
  • DomRavioliDomRavioli
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    I'd literally not speak to you again if I got an invite demanding £100 to attend a wedding. A friend of mine did something similar earlier this year (but only charging £50) and out of 140 people invited, a wonderful 29 turned up.

    Don't charge your guests because you're a cheapskate - its not their fault, its yours.

    And you have no idea of the affordability, other people's ability to pay. How would you feel if someone had to borrow money just to attend your wedding and it went wrong?

    Sickening.
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