Weddings are supposed to be celebrations of love and the marking of a glorious union between two people who have decided to devote the entirety of their lives to one another. And different people decide to celebrate this love in different ways, and that's all contingent upon personal preferences, cultural/religious cues, and, as uncomfortable as it may be to discuss, the amount of money in one's bank account.
The wedding industry is big, big business in the US. In fact, it currently represents a whopping $57.9 billion in market share. In 2020, the average cost of a wedding was $20,300, which was actually a $4,400 decrease from 2019 (COVID and everything.) However, there are definitely instances of people paying a heck of a lot more, and that doesn't even include all of the ancillary expenditures surrounding the wedding itself.
Take Groom and Bridal parties for instance. If you're "chosen" to be a part of the grooms or bride's party, then you're going to probably set aside some cash for a rip-roaring time. However, what happens if the amount of cash that's expected of you is too rich for your blood? That's what happened to a reluctant Groomsman who confided in fellow Redditors that he was finding it difficult to enjoy all of the partying surrounding the wedding.
In the now deleted post, the frustrated 20-something-year-old wrote: "My close friends are getting married. It’s my first wedding as an adult, as well as for a lot of other people attending. We’re all in our early-mid 20s and just a couple of years out of college, so we’re not swimming in cash. I wasn’t asked to be a groomsman I was told I was going to be a groomsman."
He didn't really know what all of that entailed, but he did know there was going to be a bachelor party. The problem is, all of the costs associated with the party kept increasing over a six-month period, leaving him struggling to budget accordingly and stressed at how much he was dumping into a party he felt forced into from the beginning.
"It was assumed I would be going to the bachelor party. And I’m happy to be a groomsman and I am happy to be a part of the bachelor party, but as we get closer to these events it’s become extremely expensive. I was initially told that the bachelor party would be no more than $400 for an Airbnb. However, it’s now $750."
However, as the wedding date drew closer and closer, the disgruntled Groomsman noticed that there were even more costs: "The plane tickets were outrageous. We all live in the same part of the state, but the venue is a 3-hour drive away in a random town. To stay two nights there is $700, but luckily I’m splitting it with a friend and paying $350. The suit for the groomsmen is $250. And then there’s the present for them, the cost to get to the venue, the amount of cash dropped to go out at the bachelor party."
He went on to say that the amount of money he's putting into partying and hanging out with his friends to celebrate the wedding outside of the wedding (including gifts, traveling to the venue, a room, etc.) he's going to be out for more or less what the groom paid for the wedding ring.
"This whole situation is going to cost me at the very least $2,000 but most likely closer to $2,500. I don’t think I’m too far off from matching how much he paid for the wedding ring. If all these costs were upfront I would’ve appreciated it, but instead, they’ve been staggered throughout the past 6 months."
Tons of commenters sympathized with his plight and many urged him to extricate himself from the bachelor party and just attend the wedding instead. "It’s 100% acceptable to bail on the bachelor party but make it to the wedding. Call your buddy and be straight with him. Let him know you don’t have money for both and you would much rather be there on his wedding day than anything else. If he is a good friend he will understand. If he is an ass about it, then he isn’t as good of a friend as you thought."
Others said that they had personal experience with groomsmen being upfront about not being able to afford a bachelor party, so they scaled everything down instead. "Honestly my husband was the first in his group to get married and some guys were down for a bachelor party in New Orleans, until one of them spoke up and said there was absolutely no way he could afford it, everyone else kind of got on the bandwagon and agreed that it was way too much. They went to Atlantic City...had a great time, but it cost maybe $700 split like 5 ways. They still paid for the suits, and none of them had to fly either."
What do you think? Are you a fan of wedding/bachelor parties that take place over a weekend? Or do you believe it's unfair to try and get people to fork over a ton of money just so you can celebrate your special day the way you want?