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Let's face it, weddings are expensive. And while tradition dictates that the bride's parents writes the checks, times have changed as more and more couples contribute to the shindig themselves. So how do you figure out where the funds are coming from (a major step before you set your budget!)? Our experts tell us how to politely broach the subject.
The most important thing is to be polite and to not make any assumptions. You don't want to offend anyone before the conversation has even begun! Before you sit down to ask your parents if they are going to pay for a portion, or all, of your wedding, start discussing your expectations with your fiancé. Have you dreamed of a black tie affair, or do you want something more casual in your childhood backyard? This will start to inform how much your wedding might cost. Then, take a look at what you might be able to contribute yourselves (if any) so that you can get an idea of how much money you might need to ask for.
Says wedding and etiquette expert Elaine Swann, "Start the discussion by saying, 'John and I have started to go over the budget, and we wanted to know if you planned on contributing?' This puts your parents in a position to let you know how they intend to contribute, whether it's a certain sum or a blank check, or to begin the conversation amongst themselves."
If your groom's parents had mentioned interest in contributing to the costs, as well, this same format will help get the ball rolling. Once you've found out how much money you have to work with, put together a budget and do your best to stick to it! It's hard enough to ask for money in the first place, never mind asking for more if the funds run dry.