Midwest lady has some questions about money etiquette at weddings
DEAR ANNIE: My son lives in California and is going to marry a local girl in the fall. Our entire family lives in the Midwest. My husband and I, along with our daughter’s family, will attend. But I know it is far too expensive for any of my relatives to be there.
Should they receive invitations even though we know they can’t come? I don’t want it to seem like a gift grab. Do I have a “meet the bride and groom” party in our hometown after the wedding? What is the proper procedure?
I have another question, too. My husband and I are retired, but are giving our son and future daughter-inlaw a large sum of money to help with wedding costs. As the parents of the groom, we will pay for the rehearsal dinner, but what about the rest? What are our responsibilities when it comes to out- of- state guests? — Don’t Want To Get Another
Dear Don’t Want: If these are close relatives, they probably would be hurt or offended to be excluded. Please invite them. They may wish to send a gift whether they attend or not. But you can skip more distant acquaintances, such as business associates or people you rarely contact. And should you decide to have an informal reception of your own after the wedding, that would be lovely and much appreciated.
As for expenses, your son should be covering most of them without your assistance. These days, most couples split the costs, perhaps with help from their parents. Traditionally, the groom or his parents would be responsible for his attendants’ accommodations, along with the officiant’s fee and travel costs. Other outof-town guests, however, are on their own. They should be given information about available hotels in the area, and you can supply a gift basket to each room so the guests have something to nibble on should they arrive too late to find an open restaurant. ( Some hosts provide a hospitality suite or include all out- of- towners at the rehearsal dinner, but this is optional and certainly not a requirement.) Our congratulations on your upcoming special event.