When it comes to family weddings, you’ll go anywhere to be a part of the bride and groom’s special day. Considering that the bride has been thinking about this day since she was old enough to know what marriage was, this can likely mean you’ll be travelling quite a distance to be a part of that special event. Traveling often comes with a host of expenses that you’re not quite ready for. The following is a guide to help you attend that special day for as little of a financial burden as possible. Take a look at these five tips.
First, look for travel options as soon as you learn the wedding date. If the bride and groom give you at least three or four months’ notice, you can often book a seat on a flight for pretty cheap. Don’t just visit the websites of your favorite airlines, but check out discount flight sites like Travelocity, Expedia, Kayak, or CheapFlights.com. If there are deals to be had, they’ll be here.
Second, if the wedding location is close enough, consider the price of carpooling. Five people paying for the gas of a fuel-efficient sedan can often get three to six hundred miles away much cheaper than if you hopped a plane there. That’s considering it’s a round trip experience. You’ll have to spend a bit of extra time on the road, but you’ll save money in the long run.
Not only that, but family members passing through can often offer you a ride for free. It’s always polite to push gas money on them for this, but hopping in with them can often be cheaper. Many times it helps you catch up with important family members you’ve been neglecting along the way. The point for travel to remember is to plan early, and to plan cheaply.
Third, pack food to hold you over for many of the meals. It’s easy to get to a new city, want to spend quality time with friends and family and be pressured to spending money at a fancy restaurant, bar, or activity. When it comes to eating, pack granola bars, sandwiches, and other meals for the trip. Avoid eating out as much as possible and you’ll save yourself between $10 and $20 per person, per meal. After a three day weekend, that can mean saving yourself between $30 and $80, depending on the eating habits of your family.
Fourth, remember that the wedding gift is a lovely donation to a starting couple. That said, it’s becoming increasingly common for couples to be understanding if you can’t afford anything fancy. Should your niece want to get married in Maui and you’ll be flying from Maine, they’ll be much more understanding that you can’t afford some of the more expensive things on their list. Your presence is enough. You shouldn’t feel ashamed of writing them a nice note and including a small gift card to show you cared. The time of unrealistic expectations is passing as some of the older traditions are beginning to fade. Get them something small, write something thoughtful, and let your presence be enough of a present to get them through. Let’s be honest, twenty years from now, they’ll remember that you came more than what you brought anyways. Which one do you think they care about the most?
Fifth and finally, consider looking into sharing more than just a car as you arrive in the city. Share a hotel room. Share a condo. You may not get the privacy that you’re hoping for, but you can at least save a little money for a few nights on your night-time accommodations. This may mean that you have to room with annoying Aunt Betty, but it could be an experience to help you appreciate what you have. Consider who you could room with, where you could go for a cheap hotel room, and work out a rooming situation that can get you through the wedding.
Traveling to a wedding doesn’t have to be as extravagant as the wedding themselves. You don’t need the most expensive form of travel. You don’t need to eat out just because you’re all “celebrating” for an entire weekend. You also don’t need an elaborate gift to please your family. Your family wants you there, they don’t care what it takes to get you there, nor are they particularly worried about what you eat outside of the festivities. They especially don’t want you to worry about a payday loan if you don’t need it. If you have financial concerns, don’t be ashamed of keeping to a tight budget. For after all, it’s the sweetness of the wedding that you’re looking to do. That said, payday loans can help you reserve the tickets you need to be able to buy today for a cheaper price.