What Costs Do I Cover For My Guests?

Destination Wedding

Generally, guests pay for their own transportation and lodging. You cover the cost of any events you invite them to, such as the ceremony, receptions, dinners, or other activities centering around the wedding. If guests wish to enjoy extra activities on their own time, they take responsibility for those costs. Your attendants prove the exception for them, expect to pay for transportation and 2 days of lodging.

Note that some guests, no matter how diligently you research or how many people you try to cater to, may not want to stay at the hotel or resort you choose. If you invite guests who insist on staying elsewhere, note that some hotels charge you a “day pass fee” for allowing them to enter the property hosting your wedding. Because the couple covers the cost of wedding events for the guests, you take responsibility for paying this fee, even if you informed your guests of the situation.

Am I responsible for paying for any vendors I bring from home?

If you bring a favorite hairstylist or photographer from home, for example, you take responsibility for their lodging, transportation, food, and so on, except for activities they pursue outside of wedding events. Should I still send an invitation to someone who can’t make the trip after receiving their save-the-date?

It’s polite, and you never know that person might change their mind, particularly if it means the world for them to be with you on your special day! We invited a small group of people to our destination wedding. How can we still celebrate with a larger group of friends and family who couldn’t make it or didn’t make the guest list, and what’s the etiquette for inviting them?

Many couples choose to hold a post-wedding reception once they return home. Style this however you like, from a black tie affair to a backyard get-together it provides a wonderful way to enjoy the beauty of a destination wedding ceremony and still celebrate with all of your friends and loved ones. Don’t expect gifts at the reception, though guests bring these only at showers and weddings, and they need not, nor should you expect them to, provide gifts elsewhere.

If you hold an at-home reception separate from the destination wedding, you need 2 separate sets of invitations. Send the reception-only invitations 8 weeks before the event, minus any information about the wedding ceremony.

Can I invite people to my wedding shower but not to my destination wedding?

When following good etiquette, no. Many consider this rude, and some might see it as a play to receive more gifts. A wedding shower is not the appropriate place to celebrate with these guests for just this reason when attending the shower, you bring a gift. By inviting non-wedding guests, you send the message that you would love to take their presents, but that they aren’t good enough to come to your wedding.

Because of the expensive nature of destination weddings, you may want to simply forgo the shower altogether, especially when planning a very small wedding. The travel may tax some budgets enough already, without the additional cost of gifts, shower preparation and rentals, and so on.

The exception: if you choose to hold at-home reception after returning from your wedding. If you plan on inviting your guests to the reception, consider it appropriate to also invite them to the shower (guests need not bring gifts to the reception, which balances everything out.) However, ensure that they receive a save-the-date for the reception before the shower invitation some guests may take offense if it appears they’ve been invited to only the shower.

Should I include registry information in the invitations?

No. It’s considered rude to hint at or discuss gifts in your wedding invitations. When trying to share registry information, let it spread by word of mouth with the help of your bridal party. Some view it as acceptable to place registry information in the bridal shower invitations or on your personal wedding website.

How can I share news about our marriage with people not attending our wedding or the reception?
Use a wedding announcement to inform any remaining friends or family of your marriage. Announcements only go to those not invited to the ceremony or reception, and let the happy news circulate among the rest of your acquaintances.