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Bride demands two destination events, friend asks "should I forfeit my $700 ticket?"

Bride demands two destination events, friend asks "should I forfeit my $700 ticket?"


Between bridal showers, bachelorette parties, the rehearsal dinner, and the wedding itself--being friends with a soon-to-be-bride can come with a crushing price tag...

Asking friends to drop their lives for three separate weekends, purchase plane tickets, book Airbnbs, buy two separate gifts off the registry, and wear matching hot pink outfits for Instagram while trying not to fall asleep on a tequila tour bus? It's cheaper to fall off the face of the earth when your friends get engaged.

So, when a conflicted friend decided to vent to the gloriously petty 'Wedding Shaming' group on Reddit about a bride who is demaning not one, but two separate destination parties for her wedding, the jury of judgmental strangers was ready to pile on.

My best friend’s mess of a bridal shower cost me $700 down the drain...

My childhood best friend got engaged summer of last year and set her wedding early of 2024. The wedding is going to be a destination wedding where the airfare averages somewhere between $500 to $1,000 (depending on the airline and how far in advance you decide to book your tickets). For the sake of anonymity, let’s just say we all live in NYC and her wedding is going to be in France.

Sometime late last year, she decided she wants to do her bridal shower in Italy in October 2023. I suggested that instead of October, why don’t we do her bridal shower just before her 2024 wedding, so that we can all travel to Italy, and take a cheap flight to France for her wedding.

She agrees to do this until she consulted with her wedding make-up artist who said that this is not advisable because she is going to tan + potential accidents caused by adventurous tours, so she insists again that this be done in October 2023.

At this point, I still don’t have any information at all about her 2024 destination wedding in France. I have a +1, so for tickets alone it will already cost me at least $1500 (with the sh*ttiest airline). Apart from this, she confirmed that I will have to pay for my own dress, accommodation and pre-wedding tours or activities — all of which there’s no further details on.

For example, she didn’t provide information on whether I can choose my own accommodation by the time I arrive in her destination. Or how long I need to be in the destination before and after the wedding. Or what the pre-wedding activities are.

So I expressed that it will be difficult for me to commit to her October 2023 bridal shower without knowing how much money I will have to spend in 2024.

Fast forward to December, she said that it has already been discussed with our other childhood friends (let’s name them Charlie and Bianca) and that they have already agreed to go in April 2023 instead.

I’m aware that Charlie and Bianca are not financially stable enough to make 2 separate trips to the same continent in a span of less than a year, so I felt like if they are willing to make it work despite their financial situation, then I would have no excuse not to go (for context, I make about 5x more than Charlie and Bianca). So after discussions with my partner, I agreed to go regardless knowing that even if I’m not happy to spend the money, it won’t break the bank.

2 weeks ago, the bride, groom, Charlie and Bianca announced that they have already purchased their tickets to Italy. All without consulting anyone else in the group who are planning to come.

I decided to purchase my tickets too because I was under the impression that they have already planned something. Paid $700 for a non-refundable ticket. I suppose you already know where this is going, but it doesn’t end there.

Later on, the bride, my childhood best friend, asks me to plan the bridal shower. I agreed, thinking that it will only the bridal shower evening itself. Upon investigation, so many complications arose:

Her budget for a bridal shower evening of set menu for a party of 10, free-flowing alcoholic drinks, entertainment, decorations, photographers, etc. is only $900, but she is looking at luxury hotels where the average rate per night in the cheapest room is at least $1,500.

The venues she has shortlisted is about 8hrs drive away from our city of arrival. Unless we take a local flight that costs at least another $100.

It was revealed that apart from the bridal shower evening, she is not going to pay for anyone’s accommodation or anything else, and because she set the travel dates to be a 7-day trip, Charlie and Bianca want to plan their own itinerary to make the most out of the trip they are paying for.

It was also revealed that the only reason Charlie and Bianca agreed to a 7-day trip is because they were told by the bride that they only need to pitch in $130 to rent an AirBnb together, something I didn’t agree to do, nor some of the other parties in our entourage because the bride is inviting other guests that we don’t know + we all have different standards to what’s the acceptable level of comfort when it comes to accommodation.

For example, my preferred accommodation would fall somewhere around the price range of $500- $800 per person to book a nice place. Otherwise, I might as well just book my own hotel room.

Because of this, it has been a stressful trying to figure out what scenarios could work that would please everyone. I have been asking the bride to provide me with more information that would help me plan the event, yet she has not been cooperative.

So I ended up ranting to Charlie that I’m going to withdraw from planning because it’s starting to get messy. She asked me if I would like for her to start the conversation with the bride, to which I explicitly asked her not to because I’m happy to address all of this with the bride herself.

The next morning, after debating how to tell her all of this delicately, I finally spoke to the bride and she agreed to just make it a trip. This is an upsetting outcome for me because I would not have gone with them if it was “just a normal trip”, but I just let it go and end up having a good conversation with the bride.

That same evening, the bride confronted me once again now upset that I was “talking to her behind her back” with Charlie. When I told her the exact same things, except in a more sugar-coated way because I obviously didn’t want to upset her.

She has not spoken to me since, and it has been a tornado of toxic, unnecessary drama in the past week. I’m now debating whether to cut my losses and just forfeit my $700 ticket, otherwise I’ll end up spending more just to follow through with the trip that now has zero point.

Of course, the jury of wedding shamers was eager to weigh in on this mess. Here's what people had to say...

DottedUnicorn said:

Go to Italy, just not with them. Have a great time!!

that_was_way_harsh said:

A destination BRIDAL SHOWER? Your friend is cuckoo bananas.

thisgirlnamedbree said:

A bridal shower in Italy that is costing thousands apart from the already expensive wedding? And only for ten people? I would have respectfully backed out from the shower and said I'll just be attending the wedding and I hope you have a good time. I would accept the loss and use the money for a vacation instead. You'd probably have a better time.

Cat_Lilac_Dog22 said:

Cut your losses and get out now. Nobody should be spending that kind of money on a supposed friend’s wedding. A friend doesn’t ask you to do that. Just get out of the wedding altogether. Since you already bought the plane tickets to Italy maybe give yourself a little vacation? But definitely not with the bride. Can you change the tickets to a different week maybe? You can use the wedding cost money to pay for your Italy accommodations.

Heidihighkicks said:

This is a lesson in firm boundaries and communication.

While most people agreed that this friend should've rejected all of this expensive nonsense much earlier, most people agreed that she should take herself on a vacation instead of surrendering the ticket. Good luck, everyone...

Sources: Reddit
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