Color of Money: Here's why some coupes have destination weddings

Michelle Singletary on

WASHINGTON -- It never occurred to me that some couples plan destination weddings as a maneuver to eliminate potential guests.

They don't actually want you at their wedding, so they purposefully plot for it to take place at some exotic location, knowing you can't afford to come.

"A relative of mine and his fiancée know a lot of people where they live," one reader wrote. "If they had invited everyone that they felt they should have invited to their wedding, they could have filled the National Cathedral. They worried about how to reduce the guest list without offending the uninvited. Their solution was to have a destination wedding. A lot fewer people attended."

Recently I wrote about a poll that found that 56 percent of Americans dislike destination weddings, and the comments I received showed me that couples might want to leave you out on purpose.

I was surprised by this subterfuge.

"The people I've known to have destination weddings were having them to avoid the hassle of a regular wedding and reduce possible family drama by having fewer people attend," one reader wrote.

A reader in Chicago tweeted: "@SingletaryM has a column saying people should stop having destination weddings because it's a big ask for attendees. That's exactly why my wife and I had a destination wedding. Only the people we really wanted there would make such an effort. Not coming? Whew. Good."

Planning a destination wedding seems like an outrageous way to simply limit your guest list. Here's one short line you can use if you're questioned about the number of guests you've asked to witness your nuptials: "We can't afford (or don't want) a wedding large enough to accommodate everyone who might want to come."

Then stand your ground. Sure, you might lose friends or risk a fracture in your family. But trust me: Those folks won't likely come to your financial rescue when the need arises.

The same is true if you're an invited guest.


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