Travel Betty

Encouraging Fearless Independent Travel For Women

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Gold Country Wedding Plans Take Tropical Turn

September 18th, 2007 · 4 Comments

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Well, it all started off innocently enough. Travel Boyfriend and I sat down to look over the estimates we’d received from our top two choices for our wedding location. It seemed the decision between the two was easy enough. We really loved Newcastle Wedding Gardens and thought it would make a fantastic site for our nuptials. The price was around the same as the Monte Verde and even though it didn’t include flowers and the cake, we figured those two items wouldn’t be “big ticket.”

Then we went to The Knot to start plugging in our numbers into their helpful interactive budgeting tool. Food costs. Check. Beverage costs. Check. Facility rental fee? Naively, I said, “Hmm, I think that’s included somewhere in there with the food and beverage costs on that first page.” Nope. It wasn’t. The rental cost was on the second page and was meant to be added to the first page total. And that’s about when things started to turn.

During this whole process, neither of us have been very comfortable with the idea of spending so much money for a single day’s event. When we added in the cost of the site fee, we realized the only way we were going to stay under $20k for this wedding was to serve Saltines and garden hose water. And as much as I’d love to see a few key family members attempt to take a drink as I crimp and release the hose, it just started to seem completely exhausting. And a little bit ridiculous.

So Travel Boyfriend and I started to wrack our brains. Vegas? We love Vegas and could just have a fun ceremony at the Little White Wedding Chapel and head out to a cool restaurant and bar afterwards. But, because TB’s Dad is so sick, he can’t fly or even travel by car very far. That means TB’s Mom would either have to skip the wedding too or go alone. Not gonna work.

Cut the list? We’ve got 120 people total and I feel like there are a whole lot of people I want to have at my wedding that already aren’t invited. We’re also still trying to figure out what to do about kids. For every child who attends, that’s one adult that can’t attend. And while there’s a good chance either could end up running around the dance floor with underwear displayed for the whole world to see, it’s just a really tough call to make. Cutting the list just didn’t seem like an option. Plus, the price goes up per person when there are less than 100, so there goes the savings.

Go back to dating? We didn’t have any of this pressure when we were a carefree, unbetrothed couple. Just the occasional odd stare when we told people we’d been together for 6 years. But that didn’t cost me anything close to $30,000.

And suddenly, it hit me…

B…A…L…I…, fools!

I leave for my month-long vacation in Bali in exactly 30 days. Travel Boyfriend had toyed with the idea of coming out for a week and had even managed to secure a round-trip frequent flier ticket just in case. So, why not get married in the most stunning, exotic, ritual-infused (and ridiculously cheap) island I could ever imagine?! Yeah, why not?!

We could still do a reception of sorts when we got back. But it could be more of a fun party and we could actually have it in San Francisco. My parents are coming out for Thanksgiving the day after I return for Bali to spend time with us and Travel Boyfriend’s family. Why not have a little after-wedding family celebration? We’ll still have that fresh “newlywed” smell.

So, from now until October 17, Travel Betty is turning into Travel Bride. Can I pull together a meaningful, romantic ceremony 3,000 miles away in only 30 days and for only $3,000 while wearing a dress two sizes too small? You’ll have to stay tuned to find out!

Tags: Bali · California · Northern California · Weddings

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  • 4 responses so far ↓

    • 1 jf // Sep 18, 2007 at 6:01 pm

      thank god. i thought you were completely losing your mind.

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    • 2 kara // Sep 21, 2007 at 8:55 am

      Good god I’m glad I tuned back in. I’m the one who has to wait till JANUARY to visit Bali, which is the honeymoon we’ve got planned a nice, safe distance from the late October wedding….can’t wait to live vicariously!!!!!!! I beg you, eat pig..but also check out Mozaic, a restaurant I constantly read raves about (high end but apparently worth it)….oh my god I’m excited to see the food pics alone, never mind the pics of Bali itself!!)

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    • 3 Travel Betty // Sep 21, 2007 at 9:45 am

      JF, I was almost tempted to go through with the original plan just to spite you. But you know I love you too much!

      Welcome back, Kara :) Not only am I going to eat pig, I’m going to order a whole damn pig for just myself and TB as our wedding feast!!Thanks for the Mozaic tip. I will definitely check it out and report back. Good luck with your own wedding plans.

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    • 4 Amanda is a Traveling Photographer // Apr 7, 2009 at 2:38 pm

      So THAT’S how you picked Bali ! I think I was reading posts out of order and all of a sudden it was CA ….. then Bali ….. then CA …. and I was totally confused !

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