Wedding Guest Survival Guide
Got a million weddings this summer? Take note
Yeah, yeah, yeah. Being a bride is stressful. There’s so much to plan, do, eat, et cetera. But you know what else is stressful? Being invited to three or four weddings a summer whilst pondering why you (who is, frankly, smarter and hotter than these brides-to-be) are still living single. Or maybe you’re not single, but you absolutely hate weddings. Worry not! We’ve got some tips to get you through the nuptials season.
No, you didn’t misread that. You can just decline, especially if the happy couple are more acquaintances than good friends. Send a polite response on that little card. You have a prior engagement or a scheduled bladder infection or something. It’s polite to send a gift but at least you won’t have to waste a weekend on a wedding you don’t care about, spend money getting there, scramble to find a date, or sit through a million boring speeches.
Find a date
If you can’t decline and you’re expected to find a date, that’s your first concern. If you already have a honey, you’re in the clear. If you’ve just started dating someone, tread lightly. You don’t want to scare the guy (or girl). I was once asked to a wedding four months away by a guy I’d been dating for a month and the relationship promptly went sour. Ask yourself; is it worth showing off your new squeeze and risk potentially scaring the bejeezus out of him? “You’re asking a lot of someone to be your date,” says Charlene Mendes, a 25-year-old project manager who has no less than five weddings slated this summer, “But the person has to have a sense of humour and be able to hold a conversation while you’re not at the table. They can’t think they’re better than being there or else it won’t be fun.” If you’re without a mate and you absolutely need a date, you can ask a friend, although I would recommend going solo to easier facilitate meeting a potential smooching partner. But what do I know? One thing is for sure: if anyone does you the honour of being your date, you’d better pay for his or her part of the gift.
Meet a potential smooching partner
Picking up at a wedding is kind of a cliché. I mean, there are all sorts of movies about it and you’d think that it was as easy as pie. And if you’re a man, it is. Haven’t you seen Wedding Crashers? Aside from jerks who just want to hook up, there might actually be a few good single dudes at the wedding. Meaning: look your best, try not to be bitter, and make an effort to meet people. It’s better than a bar because you have a connection to everyone at the wedding and it’s better than a house party because you don’t have to bring your own beer.
Charlene, who has a huge network of friends and family, spends about $1,000 each summer on weddings. “I didn’t realize how much I was spending,” she says. This epiphany should lead to a tight budget. Between bachelorette parties, wedding and shower gifts, and being part of the bridal party, you can’t afford to spend lavishly on every wedding you attend. Go in on gifts with friends and tell the bride if you can’t afford something. If she’s a good friend, she’s sure to understand. Charlene sets a budget for a $50 shower gift (you only have to give one, even if you attend two showers) and $100 for a wedding gift. If it’s your best friend, you might want to spend a little more.
Be a good guest
If you decide to go to the wedding (we’ve already explored the option of declining), then be a good guest. Don’t get so drunk that there are embarrassing pictures of you all over the internet the next day (those wedding photos last much longer than your friend’s “Last Weekend” album on Facebook). Don’t fall asleep during the aforementioned boring speeches. Don’t be late and don’t stuff yourself with the free grub and leave immediately. Remember, these people just might attend your “big day” so build up some good karma by being a good guest!
Written by: Nicolle Weeks