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Off resort guests--RSVP wording & guests inviting themselves


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#31 terrihugg

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    Posted 02 November 2012 - 07:41 AM

    Everyone has offered some great tips here. I wish I had seen this before. I definitely want to start telling people about having to pay their own day pass, but I think it's too late for me. 

     

    Unfortunately, I sent out my save the dates back in June and already had some people book their lodging out our resort of choice. But I've also had several people say they will attend the wedding but will stay else where. That was months ago, so I have no idea of those people already booked their alternate lodging. It's probably too late for me to start saying that they have to pay their own day pass to the resort. 



    #32 terrihugg

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      Posted 02 November 2012 - 07:41 AM

      Everyone has offered some great tips here. I wish I had seen this before. I definitely want to start telling people about having to pay their own day pass, but I think it's too late for me. 

       

      Unfortunately, I sent out my save the dates back in June and already had some people book their lodging out our resort of choice. But I've also had several people say they will attend the wedding but will stay else where. That was months ago, so I have no idea of those people already booked their alternate lodging. It's probably too late for me to start saying that they have to pay their own day pass to the resort. 



      #33 terrihugg

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        Posted 02 November 2012 - 07:43 AM

        Everyone has offered some great tips here. I wish I had seen this before. I definitely want to start telling people about having to pay their own day pass, but I think it's too late for me. 

         

        Unfortunately, I sent out my save the dates back in June and already had some people book their lodging out our resort of choice. But I've also had several people say they will attend the wedding but will stay else where. That was months ago, so I have no idea of those people already booked their alternate lodging. It's probably too late for me to start saying that they have to pay their own day pass to the resort. 



        #34 Cherina

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          Posted 03 November 2012 - 08:25 AM

          Additionally for our resort we can only have 25% of guests stay off site so that plus the fees becomes a logistical nightmare

          2.14.14 I can not wait to marry my very best friend ... Again!


          #35 LAtravelgirl

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            Posted 04 November 2012 - 08:17 PM

            I think marid2012's wording is good. Let people know the rate of the resort, all that it offers, as well as the price of a day pass if they choose to stay elsewhere. We chose an all-inclusive for several reasons. Yes, there are probably cheaper resorts on the island. However, when you factor in all the meals are covered, it becomes an inexpensive vacation, it just might not seem like it at first. We only invited immediate family and didn't really tell many people except for immediate family of the plans. We thought it inappropriate to ask others to spend so much to attend our wedding.



            #36 EVKnowsitall

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              Posted 05 November 2012 - 11:32 AM

              Originally Posted by LAtravelgirl 

              I think marid2012's wording is good. Let people know the rate of the resort, all that it offers, as well as the price of a day pass if they choose to stay elsewhere. We chose an all-inclusive for several reasons. Yes, there are probably cheaper resorts on the island. However, when you factor in all the meals are covered, it becomes an inexpensive vacation, it just might not seem like it at first. We only invited immediate family and didn't really tell many people except for immediate family of the plans. We thought it inappropriate to ask others to spend so much to attend our wedding.

               

              You'd be surprised! At first we only invited immediate family but a lot of people expressed feeling "left out" and we explained that we thought they wouldn't go because of the expense and they expressed interest. In fact, we have more friends coming now than family because people saw it as a vacation opportunity with a group of people with the wedding as a plus- of course- the wedding should be the main reason. Some of our family who never travel are coming though, and that means the world to us.

               

              I was totally surprised with one of my coworkers who is coming. Another one of my coworkers is a family member of my fiance and she was talking about the wedding in front of my other coworker and she said "Oh I can't wait to go, when are you sending out the invites?" I sent the Save the dates, but didn't give her one, so I just gave her the travel agents information and the next day my TA told me she paid her deposit. I was stunned. So sometimes if you just put it out there- people will go. It is your choice however- to only have an intimate group and just your closest family and friends with you.


              Happily married to the love of my life- since July 5, 2013

              #37 TishaJules

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                Posted 05 November 2012 - 12:46 PM

                Originally Posted by EVKnowsitall 

                 

                You'd be surprised! At first we only invited immediate family but a lot of people expressed feeling "left out" and we explained that we thought they wouldn't go because of the expense and they expressed interest. In fact, we have more friends coming now than family because people saw it as a vacation opportunity with a group of people with the wedding as a plus- of course- the wedding should be the main reason. Some of our family who never travel are coming though, and that means the world to us.

                 

                I was totally surprised with one of my coworkers who is coming. Another one of my coworkers is a family member of my fiance and she was talking about the wedding in front of my other coworker and she said "Oh I can't wait to go, when are you sending out the invites?" I sent the Save the dates, but didn't give her one, so I just gave her the travel agents information and the next day my TA told me she paid her deposit. I was stunned. So sometimes if you just put it out there- people will go. It is your choice however- to only have an intimate group and just your closest family and friends with you.

                I did it the same way. At first, I was only going to invite people I knew would make the trip. But in passing conversations, I realized that I offended other people by not choosing to invite them.  In turn, we invited everyone that we would like to attend and we are leaving it to them to decided. Some people know that they won't be able to attend a destination wedding, but is extremely honored at the thought of being invited.  I do hope that alot of people feel honored! LOL.  My guest list is at 105 - but we know for a fact that maybe about half is coming.  But we had to invite them!



                #38 DP1andDP2

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                  Posted 06 November 2012 - 08:30 PM

                  I actually came across friends that assumed that because the wedding was at an all-inclusive resort that the wedding reception would be free--because food and drinks are included in a guests stay. I think there is a misperception that destination weddings at all-inclusive resorts are very cheap or free and that guests have paid to attend your reception--little do they know that it's like paying twice for dinner.



                  #39 EVKnowsitall

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                    Posted 07 November 2012 - 07:39 AM

                    Originally Posted by DP1andDP2 

                    I actually came across friends that assumed that because the wedding was at an all-inclusive resort that the wedding reception would be free--because food and drinks are included in a guests stay. I think there is a misperception that destination weddings at all-inclusive resorts are very cheap or free and that guests have paid to attend your reception--little do they know that it's like paying twice for dinner.

                     Yes! Even my mother was confused by this. I had a lot of guests ask why they were paying per person and not per room. They also assumed that the couple incurred no costs. "Dinner is included because we are staying at an all-inclusive" was the misnomer. It's also the reason they believe any guest staying at the resort can just attend the wedding. I explain it like this- if the resort did that they would lose business because EVERYONE would have a destination wedding every time they went on vacation lol I know I would! It's certainly one of the drawbacks because some people can become embittered- "I'm paying all this money to go to your wedding and I can't bring whoever I want?" It's just one of those things that if guests do not understand now, they certainly will when they see the effort you have poured into the wedding in terms of small touches, decorations, entertainment etc. 


                    Happily married to the love of my life- since July 5, 2013

                    #40 LCB803

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                      Posted 07 November 2012 - 09:42 PM

                      Everyone in this thread has had such helpful advice for how to handle this very sticky situation... thank you so much for sharing!

                       

                       

                       
                      Originally Posted by EVKnowsitall 

                      Quote:
                      Originally Posted by kisha311 

                      I was going to give the same advice because I am facing the same situation. I put the day pass fee on our website and stated that the people not staying at the resort would be responsible for paying for the day pass. I also stated that they HAVE to tell me in advance or else the resort will not have accommodations for them at the wedding and reception because we were not aware that they were coming. It's very stressful, I still get headaches about it but it's your money! They know there is still a cost associated with their attendance. 

                      That's actually a great way to handle it. Granted people want to save money and stay at a resort they think is less expensive- and you can't collect money the day of like the troll at the bridge- but just because your guests want to save a buck shouldn't mean it should cost you! I have been grappling with this myself and my Fiance has no bones about telling people to pay their own way- but I was on the fence about it. I too, searched for a way to word the invite that let people know they should book through our travel agent. I saw some suggestions on the site from where we ordered our invites. "strongly encouraged to book through our travel agent" etc. 

                       

                      As far as people inviting themselves-the ther bride here who suggested patience is right. I think people huff and puff but in the end, they weed themselves out. At first everyone said they were coming- we actually worried we would be over the guest count. Then so many people gave us grief about how expensive it was and we were worried no one would come. Now we have a few people booking so I'm going to take it easy and see what happens.

                       

                      One dilemma I ran into- was people deciding to turn the wedding into their family vacations and inviting their whole family. Case in point- I invited a coworker/friend. She invited her mother, her sister, her sisters husband and their 5 kids, and her other sister and her two kids, and her brother... I only invited her... When I sent the Save The Dates- her mother asked how come she didn't get one. I was hoping she would have the sense to realize bc she wasn't invited and spare me the awkward conversation but hat didn't happen. I flat out told her we had a strict limit on guests and we simply could not go over. I wanted to tell her my wedding wasn't her family reunion/ free-for-all, but how do you tell people- your family can't stay at the resort? You really can't. As luck would have it- it costs too much and they all decided to stay elsewhere and she is just coming as a guest to our wedding. Awkward convo spared and friendship intact. 

                       

                      Sometimes it just takes waiting it out a bit.

                       

                      Originally Posted by maridr2012 

                      Hi there.  I think most of us brides on this site have dealt with the same or similar situations, including myself.  And what you will find, is that most of those people will weed themselves out eventually when they realize what the costs will be to them, and you just need to have alot of patience.  First, have your Save the Dates gone out yet?  If they haven't, here is what I would suggest, send your Save the Dates only to those people who you know for sure, 100% you want to invite - e.g. your immediate families, your closest extended family & friends, and bridal party, and that's it.  Those are the folks that you know for sure must be invited and need to book their flights/hotel sooner than others.  Then, when you get ready to send out your invitations, create an A list, and a B list.  Your A's are the same folks you sent the Save the Dates to, as well as other folks that you really want to invite - with a given RSVP date.  When I sent mine out I did not ask where they would be staying, b/c I was hoping everyone would stay at our resort which we already negotiated group rates for..but of course you need to give people the option to stay where they want to.  So my workaround to that was I had created a wedding website, and on the page for travel info, I typed a note telling folks where we would be staying at with rate info, AND letting them know if they wanted to stay at another resort we understood however there is a $X fee they would need to pay for a one day pass into our wedding resort.  Thats it..I put the ownership on them.  And, don't worry because most people get it..they know you're already paying for a per person fee for your ceremony/reception.  I had a few folks that wanted to stay at another resort and when they told me I explained that was totally fine, but I also pointed out that between them paying for the 1 day pass (for my resort its almost $100 per person), PLUS a cab ride to my resort and back, and they would be missing out on all the group activities, they quickly changed their minds, lol.  

                       

                      As far as your B list invitations - that would be for the folks that you will invite if you get enough declines from your A list.  Obviously, the RSVP date for your A list has to be sooner than your B list, and you'll need 2 different RSVP dates.  

                       

                      And if anyone gives you crap about not inviting them, explain as nicely as you can that you have a very tight budget, and are only able to invite your closest family and handful of friends.  

                       

                      I got really worked up during  the initial planning & invitation sending started and trust me it'll work itself out.  ALOT of people will say they're coming, whether you invite them or not because everyone wants to feel included.  But you will find that those people who you do NOT invite hush down the talk of travel booking when they realize they did not get an invitation..they figure it out and most are understanding and actually relieved.  

                       

                      PS - You shouldn't feel its a tacky gesture to have guests that are staying at another resort pay for their own day passes.  I think you'll find you will feel very differently once all your costs start adding up, lol.  It all adds up very quickly, and $35 per person can make a difference in your budget. 

                       

                      Good luck!

                       

                       

                      Originally Posted by TheWolferts 

                      We had quite a few guests that told us they were coming, but not staying at our resort. We didnt feel that if they chose to stay at another resort that we should be responsible for their resort fee since it was their choice to stay at another resort; however, we did let our guests know that there would be additional costs that they needed to take into account should they choose to book elsewhere. After seeing the resort fees, they realized that the savings they would get staying at another resort would almost be eliminated if they had to purchase day passes to take part in the activities we had planned throughout the week. Rather than try to explain everything on an RSVP card, we sent an email to all of our guests. Below is an exerpt from our email. It may seem crass to some, but I think everyone was very understanding and had no idea that we would incur quite a bit of additional costs if they chose to stay elsewhere and they didnt want us to have to pay the extra money.

                       

                      Dear family and friends,

       

                           

                      We would like to thank those of you who have already put your deposit down and committed to joining us on our special day! We have had conversations about the excitement surrounding our destination wedding, as well as answered questions and concerns. It has been brought to our attention that some of our guests would love to join us for our special day, but are looking for other living accommodations to possibly save money. We understand the temptation to "bargain" search and try to make the trip as affordable as possible, but we want you to know that we have performed extensive research and looked for the best value for our guests. The idea behind our choosing to have a destination wedding is to share more than one busy night with our guests, and we hoped that over a couple of days, many of our closest friends and family from the Midwest and East Coast could get better acquainted. Having guests staying at various other locations prevents everyone from taking advantage of this opportunity.

                      


                      Also, we wanted to share a couple of reasons we chose to host our wedding at the El Dorado Royale…

                      ·         ALL-INCLUSIVE - Our resort provides premium alcohol and a variety of cuisine options at the 10 restaurants on the property. (No runny guacamole or watered down drinks here!) All-inclusive also includes 24-hour room service, beach and poolside service, unlimited premium alcoholic beverages, and as many meals as you can pack in. Because it is all-inclusive, any guest staying at another resort will incur fees associated with entering the host resort. A $72 fee per person is assessed for guests wishing to attend the ceremony, cocktail hour, and reception dinner; and a fee of $95 per person, per day is assessed should you want to attend any other functions we have planned throughout the week on resort property.

                      ·         ACTIVITIES THROUGHOUT THE WEEK - Another great thing about a destination wedding is that Nikki and I can plan fun activities and socialize throughout the trip with our closest friends and family. (We realize this trip will be a lot of guests’ vacations, so we don’t want to take up too much time!) We are still working all of the festivities out, but here is an example of what we are planning thus far:

                      o   Wednesday: Black and White Themed Cocktail Welcome Party

                      o   Friday: Rehearsal Dinner (everyone is invited!)

                      o   Saturday: obviously the big day! Ceremony is set to start at 5pm

                      o   Various daily activities at resort: sand/pool volleyball, breakfast/lunch/happy hour/dinner gatherings, happy hour gatherings, poolside lounging, dancing, nightly band/shows, oh, and did I mention happy hour gatherings! 

                      ·         DISCOUNTED ROOM RATE - We have reserved a block of rooms at a special discounted rate for our guests (20% off!) To lock in the discounted room rates, Nikki and I are currently holding a block of rooms, but unfortunately, if we do not get a majority of these rooms booked, Nikki and I will incur additional expenses.






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