Of course you want your BFF and besties to be in your bridal party. However, you really have to examine this more carefully if you are having a big wedding, or even a small one.  Today I witnessed two out of 3 bridesmaids who nearly ruined a simple morning wedding.  The issue was they were coming from New York to where we were in North Jersey.  By car it is about 30 minutes, but if you take the bus it could easily be 45 minutes or more.  The plan was to be dressed and ready for photos by 10am.  The plan was to take photos between 10:15 to 11:15 because guests would start arriving at 11:30, and this would give the bride, the groom and the bridal party at least 20 minutes to relax, freshen up, use the restroom and cool off from taking photos out in the hot sun.

All weddings are behind by 20 minute, I have yet to witness one that was perfectly on time, and on a very rare instance, we were actually more than a half hour ahead of schedule, its so rare, I am going to guess that in having covered a thousand weddings, maybe twice have things been so far ahead of schedule that we did not know what to do with ourselves because we are usually so stressed out that when we do have more than 30 minutes of downtime, we might actually sit down to eat without rushing, call our loved ones, or even perhaps download and backup our data.

So today when the bridesmaids showed up over an hour late, what happened was we had to take photos right after the ceremony. This is usually not a problem when there is a cocktail hour, but in this case there was no cocktail hour. The reception immediately followed. This meant that now the introductions, first dance and everything else was 30 minutes behind which resulted in everything else being rushed, even the cake cutting before the wait staff had time to serve coffee.

The bride is in charge of her wedding day.  She can have a planner, a Maid or Matron of Honor, but if they are not reliable, she has to make a decision as to who to choose to be in her bridal party.  And if any one member vital to the success of the day is vital to things going smoothly, be sure they are close to the location of the events.  If not, its not unreasonable to have her sleep at your house, or even put her in a local hotel.  If the bride just paid $10-20k for a wedding and $1,000 for photography, wouldn’t a $100 expense make more sense than putting all of that at risk?

I know weddings get expensive and by the time that day comes every dollar is already spent and any extra dollar that you have to spend going forward has to be toiled over, these are all things you might consider during the entire planning process.

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