To the brides and grooms out there, when you look at your wedding photos, your friends are going to look so happy. They’ll be dancing and drinking, seemingly without a care in the world. But don’t be fooled; most of them dipped into savings they had put aside for a mortgage one day to make it through wedding season. Now you know why your guests take such advantage of the open bar. June through September can be a rather stressful time of year for people in their twenties and thirties. Why? Because it’s wedding season and those are the ages when people tend to get hitched. If you’re in this age range, you’d be smart to pinch pennies throughout the year. Remember that in addition to the vacations you’d like to plan for yourself, you’ll also have to travel to weddings. The struggle is real: here is what wedding season is like for the broke.

The mail is a point of stress

Credit card offers, takeout menus, and even doctor’s bills are honestly a welcome relief in the mailbox. It’s those large, thick letters with pretty typing and borders that cause panic. They may contain something that will cost you far more than a doctor’s visit; they may contain a wedding invitation.

You’re always pushing for the in-town location

If you are close enough to the bride and groom to put in your two cents, you’ll push for that in-town location. You’ll even send the bride unsolicited emails about wonderful venues, right here in town! Right here, where your family lives! (Right here where I don’t need to pay for a plane ticket or a hotel or take off days from work).

You secretly take the bus

You aren’t paying for an expensive taxi and you aren’t chipping in on the limo the bride and groom arranged for guests who wanted it. Oh no. You and your date are taking the bus to the venue. Okay, not exactly to the venue. You’ll get off one stop early and walk so nobody sees you arrive on the bus.

You’ve shared a Lyft or Uber in your wedding attire

You’ve also used things like Lyft Lines and shared Ubers to save money on wedding transportation. So you and your date, all decked out in your ball gown and tuxedo, sat crammed in the back of a Hyundai with teenagers going to a concert.

You stay at the off-map motel

You are not staying at that gorgeous resort the bride and groom blocked out rooms at. Oh no. You are looking at the motels in the sketchier parts of town. And when people ask you at the wedding where you’re staying, you change the subject. Or you describe your motel as a “boutique inn.”

You dread being made a bridesmaid

There are some women who you are sort of close with, but you’re just on the line of friendship where maybe they’ll ask you to be a bridesmaid—maybe they won’t. You purposefully make yourself very busy for months after these women announce the date, just so they don’t feel close enough to you to ask you to be a bridesmaid.

You suggest the beach for the bachelorette’s party

You try really hard to sell the bachelorette party on the idea of going to the beach or having a barbecue. How about just a wine night at home? Getting bottle service at a club is so passé. Come on ladies! Let’s have an intimate night of board games and two-buck chuck.

You get creative with the same dress

You have worn the same dress to five weddings. Of course, you didn’t want people to notice that in photos. So you’ve become a master of adding a waist belt here, a sash there, some decorative pins here and chunky jewelry there. Shawls are also your friend.


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