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Etiquette For Missing a Friend's Wedding

Group Therapy: Miss a Good Friend's Wedding For Vacation?

This question comes from Group Therapy in our TrèsSugar Community. Feel free to add your advice in the comments!

So I am in a very awkward position. Every year I go to Hawaii with my family over Labor Day weekend. In December, I made the travel arrangements and booked my flight. I also made a commitment to run a marathon while there, so I am very excited about the trip. However, I just found out that a good friend (who I've known for over 10 years) has decided to get married on Sunday, September 5, right in the middle of Labor Day. She's a little slow to the planning and hasn't even sent her save the dates, but she has booked the location for that day.

I don't know what to do. I can't get the money refunded for the marathon and keep trying to change my flight and come back early for her wedding, but since it's a holiday weekend, there are literally no flights. I'm getting very upset about this because I don't want it to jeopardize our friendship, but I know she will be hurt if I don't go to her wedding. Should I cancel my entire vacation? I will be losing money. Any advice is appreciated!

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Source: Flickr User Verstyl

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canadianbacon canadianbacon 5 years
My grandmother had plans for a trip to the Greek Islands and was not able to attend my wedding. She took the trip as planned, with our blessing. Had my fiancee and I been better planners, the "problem" would not have arisen. For us, there was no question: "Grandma, TAKE THE TRIP!"
snarkypants snarkypants 5 years
i agree jazzy...i forgot to put that in my previous post :OOPS: the bride has no right to get mad when people have legitimate reasons to miss the wedding. no matter when it is. for religious reasons, i will probably have to be married over a holiday weekend, since friday and saturday weddings are out. i'd hate to think people think i'm rude for having a wedding over a holiday weekend...especially since i'd be trying to make it more convenient for them. good thing i don't know anybody who does anything over labor day.
snarkypants snarkypants 5 years
i agree jazzy...i forgot to put that in my previous post :OOPS: the bride has no right to get mad when people have legitimate reasons to miss the wedding. no matter when it is.for religious reasons, i will probably have to be married over a holiday weekend, since friday and saturday weddings are out. i'd hate to think people think i'm rude for having a wedding over a holiday weekend...especially since i'd be trying to make it more convenient for them. good thing i don't know anybody who does anything over labor day.
jazzytummy jazzytummy 5 years
Although it may not be "rude" to plan a wedding over a holiday weekend, and "the wedding is about the couple, not the guests", a bride still has to accept the fact that many people may have other plans for a holiday weekend. I think Labor Day is not a great time, because folks are getting back from summer vacations, getting their kids ready to go back to school, etc. It is just a busy time for so many people, and many probably don't have extra disposable income to travel with.Yes, you can have the attitude that the wedding is all about the couple, it's your day to be selfish, fine, just don't feel too bad if there aren't many people there to help you celebrate.
jazzytummy jazzytummy 5 years
Although it may not be "rude" to plan a wedding over a holiday weekend, and "the wedding is about the couple, not the guests", a bride still has to accept the fact that many people may have other plans for a holiday weekend. I think Labor Day is not a great time, because folks are getting back from summer vacations, getting their kids ready to go back to school, etc. It is just a busy time for so many people, and many probably don't have extra disposable income to travel with. Yes, you can have the attitude that the wedding is all about the couple, it's your day to be selfish, fine, just don't feel too bad if there aren't many people there to help you celebrate.
luisamapacha luisamapacha 5 years
There's nothing complicated about this. You say, "Jenny, I am SO sorry, but I've already purchased plane tickets and registered for a marathon out of state that weekend. I wish I had known earlier about your wedding! I promise we'll celebrate just the two of us once I'm back and you're settled with your new husband." Then send a thoughtful card and gift to the wedding and don't worry about it anymore. People know that when they plan weddings late and over a holiday weekend, their best friends sometimes won't be able to make it.
luisamapacha luisamapacha 5 years
There's nothing complicated about this. You say, "Jenny, I am SO sorry, but I've already purchased plane tickets and registered for a marathon out of state that weekend. I wish I had known earlier about your wedding! I promise we'll celebrate just the two of us once I'm back and you're settled with your new husband." Then send a thoughtful card and gift to the wedding and don't worry about it anymore.People know that when they plan weddings late and over a holiday weekend, their best friends sometimes won't be able to make it.
snarkypants snarkypants 5 years
go on vacation. you had those plans first. the bride really shouldn't get mad, as somebody else said, an invitation is not a requirement that you go.anon #29, it's your wedding, so schedule it when YOU want. i don't think it's rude at all to plan a wedding over a holiday weekend. the wedding is about the couple, not the guests.
snarkypants snarkypants 5 years
go on vacation. you had those plans first. the bride really shouldn't get mad, as somebody else said, an invitation is not a requirement that you go. anon #29, it's your wedding, so schedule it when YOU want. i don't think it's rude at all to plan a wedding over a holiday weekend. the wedding is about the couple, not the guests.
Haethre Haethre 5 years
I don't know about this "tell you earlier" stuff, because it seems that she told you at least six months ahead of the wedding date. That being said, keep your trip!! true friends are very understanding, and if she whines about this then a) she doesn't know you well enough (because you do this every year) and b) she's not worth canceling a trip for, even if you are feeling generous! Have fun in Hawaii and maybe throw her a wedding shower or take her out for an awesome lunch to de-stress before the wedding!
danakscully64 danakscully64 5 years
I agree with the majority.
danakscully64 danakscully64 5 years
I agree with the majority.
Choco-cat Choco-cat 5 years
i'd say keep your trip...but there's a good chance she'll be mad at you (even though you're totally in the right).
GregS GregS 5 years
No, you go on vaca. You have to be considerate of others when you plan these things out, and know that some people just won't be able to make it because of __whatever__. Get a post-wedding party together of close friends of her and wish them good luck.I had a similar situation in that the man I wanted for best man couldn't make it. Something about needing to stay home with his pregnant wife - some excuse, eh? ;) The wedding was out of state by 1000 miles or so as that's where we were living at the time, so there was another party back "home" for friends and family from that corner of the world. Worked for us.
GregS GregS 5 years
No, you go on vaca. You have to be considerate of others when you plan these things out, and know that some people just won't be able to make it because of __whatever__. Get a post-wedding party together of close friends of her and wish them good luck. I had a similar situation in that the man I wanted for best man couldn't make it. Something about needing to stay home with his pregnant wife - some excuse, eh? ;) The wedding was out of state by 1000 miles or so as that's where we were living at the time, so there was another party back "home" for friends and family from that corner of the world. Worked for us.
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 5 years
I'm with Zivanod.
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 5 years
I'm with Zivanod.
tlsgirl tlsgirl 5 years
I'm with the others who have said not to cancel and just do your best to attend earlier events. It's not your fault at all and a friend should be understanding. Plus, that's a lot of money to lose when you factor in nonrefundable costs and change fees.
medenginer medenginer 5 years
I wouldn't cancel the trip because she's procrastinating on wedding planning and your not even in the wedding. I would try to get into as of the experience as I could then send a nice gift. Things like this will happen when planning takes place on short notice and during summer time. She has known you long enough that this is your routine and people do have a life.
kurniakasih kurniakasih 5 years
Tell her about your previous commitment asap. If she's a good friend of yours, chances are, she's known about your previous commitment and won't pressure you. If I were the bride, I'd have understood that it's a holiday weekend and most people have already had plan. And I won't turn bridezilla just because a good friend of mine can't make it. Totally understandable, people have their own lives too :) Like the others have suggested, get involved in other things (planning the bachelorette, accompany her on some pre-wedding trip) and if you can't get away still from your previous obligation, just send her a heartfelt card and a nice gift from the gift registry. Good luck.
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