Destination Weddings: Paying for Bridesmaids' Expenses?
Q: I am getting married in Hawaii. At first I planned to have four wedding attendants on each side. I agreed to pay the bridesmaids' airfare if they paid for the hotel, but now I'm considering costs, and I'm not sure I'll be able to. Should I just tell them we've decided to only have our maid of honor and best man, or should I ask them to pay for their trips?
A: Instead of telling them you've decided to exclude them without offering a reason -- which is bound to hurt some feelings -- honesty is the best policy. Sure, the added cost of getting to Hawaii may mean some or all of them won't be able to make the trip, but it should be their decision. If you simply explain that you overestimated how much you were going to be able to contribute, that's something they can understand and appreciate. If they're doubtful of the cost but still really want to try to make it, help them look into discounted fares through a travel agent or an online broker. They may be able to get a good fare if they travel during off-hours, for example. It can be done, if you're willing to do the research.-- JoAnn Gregoli