Surviving Wedding Season

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Surviving wedding season can be a lot. If you’re in your mid-twenties, you might have experienced an onslaught of engagement pictures, hen party invites, and links to Pinterest pages from your besties asking if you think emerald cut is better than princess cut (oh, just me?). Spring has barely begun, and already some of us have been flooded with invites to nuptials, hen dos, and stags. If this is the first wave of your friends getting married, congratulations! And also, get ready, because it ain’t a bed of roses. To make the most of this time, read on for the best ways to keep it as hassle-free as possible!

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Take care of what you can in advance

There are some things you do not want to leave until the last minute. This includes:

– Your RSVP. Did you know RSVP stands for “Repondez s’il vous plaît” which translates to “PLEASE RESPOND!” In some cases a late response might be taken as a lack of interest by the bride and groom. A friend of mine once thought she sent an RSVP, realised over a month later that she hadn’t (she’d meant to get stamps, put the card in her diary, and forgot). When she realised her mistake, she called the bride and found out that they’d downsized the venue after their RSVP cut-off date, and there was no longer space for her. Don’t let this happen to you!

-Your outfit. Lay it out the night before, including any accessories/hairpieces/jewellery (including cufflinks) you’ll need. If you’re travelling, put all these things into a separate Ziploc bag. You should do this ahead of time – you do not want to get to the morning of the wedding to realise there’s a wine stain on the jacket you wanted to wear!

-Your travel. If you know where you’re going, and when you need to be there, don’t cross your fingers and hope for a sale – buy your ticket! You don’t want to wait too long and find the prices have gone up, or (heaven forbid) the train you wanted to be on is fully booked.

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Budget, budget, budget

Do yourself a favour and figure out your expenses now, so that you don’t have a nasty shock when your Visa bill arrives. Ask yourself – what will I be expected to pay for? If you’re going to a hen or stag, will you have to pay a deposit? For booze or food on the day? For a present for the bride? Are you travelling for the hen/stag? Do you have to pay for accommodation in the city you’re traveling to, or can you stay with a friend?

How about for the big day itself – will you need to buy a new dress or suit, or can you use an old one? (If it’s an old one, is it clean, or will you need to take it to a dry cleaners?) Do you have to take a taxi or Uber from your accommodation to the ceremony, and/or from the ceremony to the reception? Is it open bar, or will you have to pay for booze? How much are you willing to spend on a gift?

All of these expenses can pop up out of nowhere, so figure out how much you’re willing to spend and if you don’t have it in the bank, start saving NOW. And if you’re looking for a discounted hotel or dress, might we suggest searching Wowcher for what you need?

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Have a good story in your back pocket

Let me give you a preview of a conversation that could potentially happen 100 times throughout the wedding reception:

“So, how do you know Amanda?”

“Work. You?”

“Oh, I know Dan from ultimate Frisbee”

“Oh.”

“Oh.”

…painful, right? Weddings are a great place to meet people, as everyone’s in a good mood and possibly a little liquored up. Even if you get nervous meeting new people, you can avoid this awkwardness by having a good story at the ready about the couple. You met the bride at work? Talk about how she couldn’t stop talking about the groom after their first date. You know the groom through ultimate Frisbee? Talk about how the whole team helped with the proposal. People love hearing stories, and at a wedding the only common ground you can guarantee is that everyone wishes the bride and groom well. Be sure to avoid stories that cast the happy couple in a poor light, including risqué stories about the stag or hen (you never know when new in-laws are listening!)

In fact, while you’re thinking of responses you can pull out at the drop of a hat, allow us to suggest you prepare for the comments you’ll get about your relationship status. If you’re single, get ready for: “Don’t worry, he’s out there SOMEWHERE”, “Are you doing online dating?” and “Have you met Alex over there? Of course, I forgot you were cousins…”. If you’ve brought someone, heaven help them, because you will get the ‘So when are you two going to tie the knot?’ question from at least one drunk uncle. Well-meaning relatives and family are great, but having a well-thought-out retort or joke is better.

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