Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

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kenoryan
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by kenoryan »

triceratop wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 8:30 pm I think OP is Bangladeshi. So, for people asking about the OP's background, consider that.

As others have noted, Indian weddings are famously lavish, and are often paid for by the bride's family. I have some personal experience with this -- though in my case not fully, partially because bride's parents could not approve of someone who cared so little about organizing one's life around the maximization of wealth. So the wedding never happened. But, if it had, I was clear that I was not paying more than half of what I considered a reasonable sum for a wedding. I'm white, so my figure was substantially smaller.

OP, I don't have any advice for you here other than to be clear and communicate what you feel and what you want.
I say just give that much money to the kids. They can use it to pay off their student loans or put it towards a house. It's crazy
It's often not either/or, it's "and", "also", and "as well". The student loans, postgraduate education loans, and house as well. :) Not a bad deal at all, choose your parents wisely.
<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<Not a bad deal at all, choose your parents wisely.>>>>>>

Or your in-laws! :D

Oh yeah, and does it have to be during a Michigan-Notre Dame football game? :annoyed
spectec
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by spectec »

sambb wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 8:23 pm It might be that she comes from much more family wealth than you, and this is not expensive to them
That's also a possibility. If this is not expensive to them, yet they expect a traditional wedding which they won't follow tradition in paying for, perhaps they are sending a strong signal about their attitude toward the marriage.
Don't gamble; take all your savings and buy some good stock and hold it till it goes up, then sell it. If it don't go up, don't buy it. - Will Rogers
katnok
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by katnok »

Indian weddings can be really expensive. IMO, parents, more than bride and groom, care about how lavish the wedding has to be. It's their opportunity to show off what they have got.

May be the OP can have a conversation with her parents and see if they can foot the bill. If they can afford and are willing, let them handle it.

My wife and I have 2 girls (7&9), and my wife never fails to bring up the cost of their future weddings in our financial calculations. However, she doesn't want to give me a number, but simply says it's going to be a lot :oops:
TravelGeek
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by TravelGeek »

spectec wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 8:54 pm
sambb wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 8:23 pm It might be that she comes from much more family wealth than you, and this is not expensive to them
That's also a possibility. If this is not expensive to them, yet they expect a traditional wedding which they won't follow tradition in paying for, perhaps they are sending a strong signal about their attitude toward the marriage.
The OP stated:

“She doesn't come from a rich family either, but she does not come with the understanding as to how to spend/save the money.”
spectec
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by spectec »

"Rich" is relative. But you make a valid point.
Don't gamble; take all your savings and buy some good stock and hold it till it goes up, then sell it. If it don't go up, don't buy it. - Will Rogers
moneywise3
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by moneywise3 »

That's cheap. I experienced an Indian wedding about 14 years ago in SoCal. The groom's parents spent a few hundred thousand dollars. They had a lavish multi day wedding in India with thousands of guests and a second one here with hundreds. That doesn't include the gifts that were exchanged! The bride was from India, first time to US after wedding. Her parents didn't spend much. The groom himself was probably making a fifth of that as his annual salary, so it was a parents thing.
James123
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by James123 »

If the wedding is in NYC, OP is vastly underestimating the expense of the wedding. A lavish flower arrangement for 400 people could easily cost $ 20-30k. The food cost could be $100-150 per person (40-60 k for the whole wedding). Gold jewelry, clothes, photo/ videographer, horse everything adds up... All these expenses are just for one day. If it stretches over 2-3 days, expenses will further add up
In NYC, expenses could easily exceed $ 200k :oops: :moneybag :moneybag :moneybag
Warm regards, | James
spectec
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by spectec »

And along with the horse there's also the cost of the loud drummers and the suit covered with money...
Don't gamble; take all your savings and buy some good stock and hold it till it goes up, then sell it. If it don't go up, don't buy it. - Will Rogers
KlangFool
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by KlangFool »

OP,

What do I miss here?

A) If we follow the tradition, then, a big wedding is a must.

B) If we follow the tradition, then, the bride's parent is paying for the wedding.

C) So, where is the problem?

D) Are you the problem?

i) You do not want a big wedding.

and

ii) You do not allow the bride's parent to pay for it.

What do I miss here?

The persons that want a big wedding aka bride's parent is paying for the wedding. So, where is the problem?

KlangFool
TravelGeek
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by TravelGeek »

KlangFool wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:16 pm
What do I miss here?

The persons that want a big wedding aka bride's parent is paying for the wedding. So, where is the problem?
This part: "She has a lavish wedding plan , with about 400 guests and 2-3 days of wedding. "

The wife-to-be wants the lavish wedding as well. The OP's dilemma is to convince the bride that the plan is not workable without outside funding.
KlangFool
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by KlangFool »

OP,

Is it your job to organize the wedding in the first place? As some folks had said, it is the bride's parent that pay and organize the wedding. So, why are you doing something that is not your job in the first place? I am not Indian. So, pardon my ignorance if I am wrong.

KlangFool
KlangFool
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by KlangFool »

TravelGeek wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:19 pm
KlangFool wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:16 pm
What do I miss here?

The persons that want a big wedding aka bride's parent is paying for the wedding. So, where is the problem?
This part: "She has a lavish wedding plan , with about 400 guests and 2-3 days of wedding. "

The wife-to-be wants the lavish wedding as well. The OP's dilemma is to convince the bride that the plan is not workable without outside funding.
TravelGeek,

Why? OP is not supposed to fund the wedding in the first place as per their culture. It is not his problem. It is her parents' problem. It is between her and her parents.

KlangFool
KlangFool
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by KlangFool »

Folks,

Every culture has its own way to deal with this kind of problem. Or else, folks will not get married and the culture will cease to exist. So, OP's answer is in his culture. He needs to find a priest or elder or whoever is the senior ranking person in his community and find the culturally acceptable answer.

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triceratop
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by triceratop »

KlangFool,
In the area of interpersonal relationships it is often not sufficient to reduce things to exclusive multiple-choice decisions which all logical humans will happily complete and arrive at the "correct" decision. As Thaler is fond of saying, humans are not so-called "Econs", those enviable creatures that mathematicians and economists would like them to be. You and I might wish them to be, but it is not so.
"To play the stock market is to play musical chairs under the chord progression of a bid-ask spread."
KlangFool
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by KlangFool »

triceratop wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:35 pm KlangFool,
In the area of interpersonal relationships it is often not sufficient to reduce things to exclusive multiple-choice decisions which all logical humans will happily complete and arrive at the "correct" decision. As Thaler is fond of saying, humans are not so-called "Econs", those enviable creatures that mathematicians and economists would like them to be. You and I might wish them to be, but it is not so.
triceratop,

A culture has a set of protocol to deal with this kind of situation. So, if it is between culture, you have more than one possible answer. But, within the same culture, the protocol has to take precedent.

Just for an example,

In my culture, the guests essentially pay most of the cost of the wedding. The largest cost of the wedding is the wedding banquet and the guests are expected to give enough cash to cover the wedding banquet. As long as the bride and groom do not invite too many guests from other cultures, the wedding will essentially be breaking even financially.

KlangFool
Elysium
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by Elysium »

I think the problem here is complicated. Bride's parents are probably paying for most of it, but Bride herself isn't totally removed from it, and she may be footing more than she has saved for this wedding. OP is worried about she spending money she doesn't have before they are even married. It is very likely that in addition to the bill footed by her parents, she has additional things planned by herself. This is clear based on what he explained about her as not caring too much about finances. She is probably the type who likes to spend first then think later. Bottomline, this doesn't seem to have anything to do with the title line (Indian wedding), but more to do with two individuals who are not on same page when it comes to finances.
TravelGeek
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by TravelGeek »

Elysium wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:48 pm I think the problem here is complicated. Bride's parents are probably paying for most of it, but Bride herself isn't totally removed from it,
That isn’t how I read this part of the OP:

“She has a lavish wedding plan , with about 400 guests and 2-3 days of wedding.
We don't want to burden our parents with finances. “
hmw
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by hmw »

I echo one previous post that $15 to 20k is not going to cover a 300-400 person 3-day wedding.

My wife and I got married about 10 years ago. We had about 120 guests, and it was a one-day wedding. We tried to control costs. I.e. definitely not lavish. It cost me about $35k. One close friend spent 80k on his wedding and I didn’t think his wedding was particularly lavish.

Good luck
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by hmw »

KlangFool wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:43 pm
triceratop wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:35 pm KlangFool,
In the area of interpersonal relationships it is often not sufficient to reduce things to exclusive multiple-choice decisions which all logical humans will happily complete and arrive at the "correct" decision. As Thaler is fond of saying, humans are not so-called "Econs", those enviable creatures that mathematicians and economists would like them to be. You and I might wish them to be, but it is not so.
triceratop,

A culture has a set of protocol to deal with this kind of situation. So, if it is between culture, you have more than one possible answer. But, within the same culture, the protocol has to take precedent.

Just for an example,

In my culture, the guests essentially pay most of the cost of the wedding. The largest cost of the wedding is the wedding banquet and the guests are expected to give enough cash to cover the wedding banquet. As long as the bride and groom do not invite too many guests from other cultures, the wedding will essentially be breaking even financially.

KlangFool
KlangFool,

Do the cash gifts go towards paying for the wedding? My wife also received cash gifts at our wedding, and she kept it all. :happy I had no idea how much she got. But I suspect it was not enough to cover the entire wedding.
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Watty
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by Watty »

I suspect that there is a big disconnect on the idea of what a typical Indian wedding is really like and what is being planned.

I just looked it up and the per-capita income in India is very modest and even if everything is less expensive in India there is no way that the average wedding in India could be anything like what is being discussed.
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triceratop
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by triceratop »

Watty wrote: Tue Aug 28, 2018 12:11 am I suspect that there is a big disconnect on the idea of what a typical Indian wedding is really like and what is being planned.

I just looked it up and the per-capita income in India is very modest and even if everything is less expensive in India there is no way that the average wedding in India could be anything like what is being discussed.
There is a washington post article linked above which discusses how the modest means of many in India may differ from the experiences of south Asians in America. Consider that many Indians are quite wealthy as they are disproportionately well-educated and many pursue high-status professions. Whatever your opinion about the merits about that, there are lots of rich south asians. Also, do you think the poorest Indians are the ones most likely to make it to the US?

Amusingly, the numbers presented in the article ($12 million over 415 weddings) do not exactly paint a picture of extravagance that the author depicted.
"To play the stock market is to play musical chairs under the chord progression of a bid-ask spread."
TravelGeek
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by TravelGeek »

triceratop wrote: Tue Aug 28, 2018 12:19 am Amusingly, the numbers presented in the article ($12 million over 415 weddings) do not exactly paint a picture of extravagance that the author depicted.
I was wondering about that as well. That’s an average of less than $30k per wedding. The other revenue number mentioned, $3.3 million for 118 weddings is very close to that. Maybe many weddings are significantly smaller affairs, but the article certainly doesn’t give that impression.
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triceratop
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by triceratop »

TravelGeek wrote: Tue Aug 28, 2018 1:00 am
triceratop wrote: Tue Aug 28, 2018 12:19 am Amusingly, the numbers presented in the article ($12 million over 415 weddings) do not exactly paint a picture of extravagance that the author depicted.
I was wondering about that as well. That’s an average of less than $30k per wedding. The other revenue number mentioned, $3.3 million for 118 weddings is very close to that. Maybe many weddings are significantly smaller affairs, but the article certainly doesn’t give that impression.
These are revenue figures for the hotel, of course. The total cost of the wedding is likely far more; I may have been too hasty -- $30k rental fee for the hotel venue may correspond to quite a hefty total cost.
"To play the stock market is to play musical chairs under the chord progression of a bid-ask spread."
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unclescrooge
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by unclescrooge »

Watty wrote: Tue Aug 28, 2018 12:11 am I suspect that there is a big disconnect on the idea of what a typical Indian wedding is really like and what is being planned.

I just looked it up and the per-capita income in India is very modest and even if everything is less expensive in India there is no way that the average wedding in India could be anything like what is being discussed.
People spend obscene amounts of money on weddings in India. If you have a daughter you don't save for her college, but instead start saving for her wedding.

The OP is sadly underestimating the cost of an Indian wedding. I would budget $150-200 per person all in, on the low end.

Just like remodeling a house, wedding budgets can spiral out of control quickly.

My wife wanted a somewhat extravagant wedding, as did her parents. But she is a reasonable and price sensitive person. I told her parents that I would pay in proportion to the number of guests I was inviting. Since 2/3rds of the guests were their friends, they should pay for 2/3rds of the wedding.

Luckily, they were in a position to afford it, and between my mother-in-law's thriftiness and my negotiating skills, we threw a $75k wedding for under $50k. We had 188 guests so we spent about $250 per person. And we got several thousand dollars in gifts.

In-laws asked if I could chip in more, and I flatly refused. I knew I would need the money as a down payment on a house and I gently suggested if the budget was getting out of hand we should cull the guest list.

No one got bumped and everyone had a great time.

OP needs to have a frank discussion with his future life partner about values. If both parties value different things in life, it will make for many unpleasant conversations. Better to start now.
Elysium
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by Elysium »

TravelGeek wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:55 pm
Elysium wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:48 pm I think the problem here is complicated. Bride's parents are probably paying for most of it, but Bride herself isn't totally removed from it,
That isn’t how I read this part of the OP:

“She has a lavish wedding plan , with about 400 guests and 2-3 days of wedding.
We don't want to burden our parents with finances. “
Obviously there is more between the lines than what was said. OP left out several things. For instance, he did not explain his background. Based on what I hear, it is usually the bride's parents who pay for the wedding and they do not consider it a burden but a celebration. Anyhow, we cannot assume too many of these things, without OP explaining the disconnecting pieces. To me, it does look like an individual background thing between OP and his to-be wife.
KlangFool
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by KlangFool »

hmw wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 11:47 pm
KlangFool wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:43 pm
triceratop wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:35 pm KlangFool,
In the area of interpersonal relationships it is often not sufficient to reduce things to exclusive multiple-choice decisions which all logical humans will happily complete and arrive at the "correct" decision. As Thaler is fond of saying, humans are not so-called "Econs", those enviable creatures that mathematicians and economists would like them to be. You and I might wish them to be, but it is not so.
triceratop,

A culture has a set of protocol to deal with this kind of situation. So, if it is between culture, you have more than one possible answer. But, within the same culture, the protocol has to take precedent.

Just for an example,

In my culture, the guests essentially pay most of the cost of the wedding. The largest cost of the wedding is the wedding banquet and the guests are expected to give enough cash to cover the wedding banquet. As long as the bride and groom do not invite too many guests from other cultures, the wedding will essentially be breaking even financially.

KlangFool
KlangFool,

Do the cash gifts go towards paying for the wedding? My wife also received cash gifts at our wedding, and she kept it all. :happy I had no idea how much she got. But I suspect it was not enough to cover the entire wedding.
Bride and groom kept the money. They can use it for anything. By custom, the cash should cover the cost of the banquet. So, if it is $50 per person, 2 guests = $100.

KlangFool
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haranoth
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by haranoth »

Thanks to everyone for their advice.
As most you mentioned marriage is a journey and there will need to be some sacrifice along the way.
I grew up most of my life in Boston area, although I originally am from Bangladesh. My parents decided to spend their life later adult life in Bangladesh doing social work after spending their early adult life in middle-east. And my fiancee lived all her life in NYC. So, there is a bit of disconnect in terms of our understanding about wedding and what that entails. I am more on the conservative side on these things. And she is feeling some pressure from her family.

Many of you have prudently mentioned, its' the marriage part of the wedding ; that's what counts.
Thanks for people who chimed in with the real numbers. My fiancee and I had a bit of chat with those numbers and now we are atleast talking about what that expense might do to our future. I am not sure whether we will come down to a number within my liking, but we are talking about our future finances now..
We have established, we do not want to get into debt, or lower our contribution to 401k for the wedding, and we might cut down on some lavish stuff, and wedding gown is off the discussion table :)
I guess it's a fair enough conversation starter for me, without upsetting her...

Thanks for all the advise. It does really help.
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triceratop
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by triceratop »

triceratop wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 8:30 pm I think OP is Bangladeshi. So, for people asking about the OP's background, consider that.
I grew up most of my life in Boston area, although I originally am from Bangladesh.
8-)
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staythecourse
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by staythecourse »

IngognitoUSA wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 9:54 am Wedding are important to Indians and if they are planning a $100k wedding, there is family wealth that you will get in the future.
Not necessarily. Most estate lawyers are pretty intelligent about this and will advice that the money go to into a trust with the beneficiary as the wife and her kids ONLY. Spouse is left out for a reason. Divorce rates are just too high to believe in fairy tale marriages that last forever. They know it and make sure that money is not diverted to a SIL to touch it WITHOUT being actively married to the wife.

Good luck.
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xrvision
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by xrvision »

I am first generation Indian-American. I paid for my own wedding (I was the bride) with minimal help from my parents and none from the groom's side.

-My biggest advice for saving $ for an Indian wedding is to DECREASE THE NUMBER OF EVENTS. Each event you have will add a bare minimum $15K. Skip the Mehendi, or have it at a smaller room at the hotel. Our workaround- we got married on a Friday due to religious reasons, and nobody was going to come to a Mehendi/Sangeet on a Wednesday or Thursday night. So we just had a small simple dinner for out of town guests on Thursday night before the wedding.
-I did NOT get any new jewelry for the wedding. My mom had plenty of gold jewelry, and I wore pieces that she already had. This saved a large amount of money. When you're on a stage and you're wearing all the jewelry at once, nobody notices :D
-Decide on what you want to spend your $ on. Food? Clothes? DJ? Skimp on the other stuff. (Example- I should have skimped on the invitations. You can design your own invitations on Vistaprint, etc.)

I really have no other advice for you except that this definitely merits a bigger discussion on finances with your fiance. Many Indian families raise their kids to not talk about money, AND many Indian families are obsessed with keeping up with the Jones. Example- I am pretty frugal and was raised by a frugal family. I saved a ton when I was younger, but had absolutely no understanding of what to do with that money. I did not understand what saving for retirement really meant. Your fiance may be in the same boat, and with some heart to heart talks, hopefully you all will end up on a similar financial page. It definitely is worth having those discussions now though! It doesn't end at the wedding- I have friends that spend $4K for kids' first birthday parties.

Maybe concrete discussions on "10K could pay for decorations for one event, OR could pay for:"
-a week long vacation in Bali
-part of a brand new car
-would be worth $x in x years with compound interest

Good luck!
IngognitoUSA
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by IngognitoUSA »

https://www.marriott.com/hotelwebsites/ ... ckages.pdf

To get an idea, how expensive it can get pretty quickly.
neoptolemus412
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by neoptolemus412 »

I had an Indian wedding on Long Island last year. Desi weddings cost a lot b/c of 4 factors. Guests. Venue/Food. Stage. Clothes. We spent $65k spread out over 4 days of events, which was a little over budget. We paid for it all on our own with no family help.

A few suggestions to save money.

Guests

guests will drive your costs. Family will all need to be invited, so the only way to cut the list is picking an inconvenient date outside of wedding season. Kids will always be invited, but people with kids may choose for only one spouse to come b/c the cost for travel/hotel is not worth it. Do a shaadi on a Sunday in the fall or early winter. It will cut the list.

Venue/Food

Pick a hotel for the shaadi and a desi hall for the mehendi. Hotels can cut costs b/c they have weeekends to fill. If you choose peak wedding season, you’ll be competing with others. A fall wedding in October can get you some cost savings. Desi halls are way cheaper, but likely in areas with big Indian or Pakistani polpulations. I have no clue where in ny you want, but queens and Long Island are your best bets. For our wedding, the shaadi was at a traditional ‘American venue’ and came to $125/plate with taxes and fees. The desi venue was $50/plate.

If you stick to American venues, food costs can be driven down by buffet style outside desi caterers. We did not do this, but I know many couples that did. Then you’re just renting the space, tables, chairs, etc for the events. Caterers for 400 people will run you $30-$50/plate.

Stage

This is the desi specific stuff that can go wild. We paid $2k/day for our stages. It’s tough to find a deal on this as there are only so many places that do Indian weddings. This limits the venue. Can’t go to the vw hall with an 8 ft ceiling. Is shop around, but I’d expect $1,500/day for the most basic of stages.

Clothes

The clothes for the bride and groom can get cut down. It’s actually cheaper to fly to Karachi and shop for 10 day and Have the clothes shipped here than it is to buy in the US. We did this and saved a few thousand.


Overall, I can go on a tirade about some of the comments that just don’t get desi wedding culture. There are just a certain set of cultural expectations that drive up guest count and costs. It’s not right or wrong, but just how it is. If you have 400 people that you have invite, it’s going to limit the venues and options. Best of luck. PM me if looking in the queens/nyc area for suggestions.
mervinj7
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by mervinj7 »

Watty wrote: Tue Aug 28, 2018 12:11 am I suspect that there is a big disconnect on the idea of what a typical Indian wedding is really like and what is being planned.

I just looked it up and the per-capita income in India is very modest and even if everything is less expensive in India there is no way that the average wedding in India could be anything like what is being discussed.
Watty, OP is discussing a Indian American wedding in the NY/NH area of the United States. Per-capita income in the country of India is irrelevant. Indian Americans in the U.S. have the highest median household income of any ethnic group at $100k/year in 2015 compared with $53k among all U.S. households.

http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/20 ... americans/

I tried looking up the 2016 Census data for Population Category 400-401 (Asian Indian alone), and the updated median household income is $110k/year. 2017 American Community survey data will be released in Sept 2018 but I expect the upward trend will continue.
https://factfinder.census.gov/faces/tab ... Type=table

$50k for a one-day Indian American wedding in NY with 400 guests ($100/plate + wedding expenses) wouldn't surprise me but I don't see how you can do a full 3-day event for that quote...
Caduceus
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Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by Caduceus »

Seems like too many moving parts and complications. Why not the two of you with your families settle on an overall sum you both can live with, and then you decide how to allocate? Otherwise you will probably end up skimping a little here and a little there but still find out the numbers are ginormous.
njdealguy
Posts: 163
Joined: Wed Jul 26, 2017 8:15 am

Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by njdealguy »

KlangFool wrote: Tue Aug 28, 2018 6:49 am
hmw wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 11:47 pm
KlangFool wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:43 pm
triceratop wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:35 pm KlangFool,
In the area of interpersonal relationships it is often not sufficient to reduce things to exclusive multiple-choice decisions which all logical humans will happily complete and arrive at the "correct" decision. As Thaler is fond of saying, humans are not so-called "Econs", those enviable creatures that mathematicians and economists would like them to be. You and I might wish them to be, but it is not so.
triceratop,

A culture has a set of protocol to deal with this kind of situation. So, if it is between culture, you have more than one possible answer. But, within the same culture, the protocol has to take precedent.

Just for an example,

In my culture, the guests essentially pay most of the cost of the wedding. The largest cost of the wedding is the wedding banquet and the guests are expected to give enough cash to cover the wedding banquet. As long as the bride and groom do not invite too many guests from other cultures, the wedding will essentially be breaking even financially.

KlangFool
KlangFool,

Do the cash gifts go towards paying for the wedding? My wife also received cash gifts at our wedding, and she kept it all. :happy I had no idea how much she got. But I suspect it was not enough to cover the entire wedding.
Bride and groom kept the money. They can use it for anything. By custom, the cash should cover the cost of the banquet. So, if it is $50 per person, 2 guests = $100.

KlangFool

KlangFool,

Looks like based on these posts can actually guess your ethnicity now (I'm Indian). What would confirm it is if this cash that guests give for the wedding banquet is given in a red envelope.
KlangFool
Posts: 17865
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2008 12:35 pm

Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by KlangFool »

njdealguy wrote: Tue Aug 28, 2018 2:04 pm
KlangFool wrote: Tue Aug 28, 2018 6:49 am
hmw wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 11:47 pm
KlangFool wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:43 pm
triceratop wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 10:35 pm KlangFool,
In the area of interpersonal relationships it is often not sufficient to reduce things to exclusive multiple-choice decisions which all logical humans will happily complete and arrive at the "correct" decision. As Thaler is fond of saying, humans are not so-called "Econs", those enviable creatures that mathematicians and economists would like them to be. You and I might wish them to be, but it is not so.
triceratop,

A culture has a set of protocol to deal with this kind of situation. So, if it is between culture, you have more than one possible answer. But, within the same culture, the protocol has to take precedent.

Just for an example,

In my culture, the guests essentially pay most of the cost of the wedding. The largest cost of the wedding is the wedding banquet and the guests are expected to give enough cash to cover the wedding banquet. As long as the bride and groom do not invite too many guests from other cultures, the wedding will essentially be breaking even financially.

KlangFool
KlangFool,

Do the cash gifts go towards paying for the wedding? My wife also received cash gifts at our wedding, and she kept it all. :happy I had no idea how much she got. But I suspect it was not enough to cover the entire wedding.
Bride and groom kept the money. They can use it for anything. By custom, the cash should cover the cost of the banquet. So, if it is $50 per person, 2 guests = $100.

KlangFool

KlangFool,

Looks like based on these posts can actually guess your ethnicity now (I'm Indian). What would confirm it is if this cash that guests give for the wedding banquet is given in a red envelope.
You got it.

KlangFool
Finridge
Posts: 775
Joined: Mon May 16, 2011 7:27 pm

Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by Finridge »

By a South Asian, Ramit Sethi, (although not specific to South Asian weddings): https://www.iwillteachyoutoberich.com/b ... -weddings/

In his book he talked about how weddings are the one item that we think everyone else should spend less on, but often end up going "all out" ourselves...

If I had it my way, most wedding receptions would be inexpensive potluck picnics in the local public park.
delamer
Posts: 10551
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 6:13 pm

Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by delamer »

staythecourse wrote: Tue Aug 28, 2018 8:00 am
IngognitoUSA wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 9:54 am Wedding are important to Indians and if they are planning a $100k wedding, there is family wealth that you will get in the future.
Not necessarily. Most estate lawyers are pretty intelligent about this and will advice that the money go to into a trust with the beneficiary as the wife and her kids ONLY. Spouse is left out for a reason. Divorce rates are just too high to believe in fairy tale marriages that last forever. They know it and make sure that money is not diverted to a SIL to touch it WITHOUT being actively married to the wife.

Good luck.
The phrase “actively married” made me giggle...
Dottie57
Posts: 9210
Joined: Thu May 19, 2016 5:43 pm
Location: Earth Northern Hemisphere

Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by Dottie57 »

delamer wrote: Tue Aug 28, 2018 7:44 pm
staythecourse wrote: Tue Aug 28, 2018 8:00 am
IngognitoUSA wrote: Mon Aug 27, 2018 9:54 am Wedding are important to Indians and if they are planning a $100k wedding, there is family wealth that you will get in the future.
Not necessarily. Most estate lawyers are pretty intelligent about this and will advice that the money go to into a trust with the beneficiary as the wife and her kids ONLY. Spouse is left out for a reason. Divorce rates are just too high to believe in fairy tale marriages that last forever. They know it and make sure that money is not diverted to a SIL to touch it WITHOUT being actively married to the wife.

Good luck.
The phrase “actively married” made me giggle...
Me too!
moneywise3
Posts: 501
Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2010 6:54 pm

Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by moneywise3 »

I mentioned this thread to my family, and my pre-teen daughter's advice is "it's about creating memories".
☺️❤️🤣
sc9182
Posts: 368
Joined: Wed Aug 17, 2016 7:43 pm

Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by sc9182 »

Almost sounds like there is friction/gap there, and how come your parents are not in the loop, may be they should take their part in these discussions.

Doesn't sound like one of those fully arranged marriages, is it? If it is, either the parents are bit lower-middle class, or that the bride is 7th kid in their family, hence they ran out of money raising/marry'ing their elder kids!

If its not 100% arranged marriage, forget about custom regarding who should traditionally bear Wedding costs etc. You have to sort that out!

As for bride's wish for lavish wedding - she'll prolly love a 2 carat diamond ring as a surprise present, if you got sufficient means and love to show for :-)
Last edited by sc9182 on Wed Aug 29, 2018 6:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
NYnative
Posts: 423
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 10:41 am

Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by NYnative »

I don't know how many here have recent experience with a wedding for one of your kids. DS was married in May and there were about 80 guests in attendance. We live in a somewhat high cost area, but there are many that are far higher. I don't know the intricacies of an Indian wedding, but I estimate that one for 400 people will cost well over $100K. I attended one about 10 years ago and it was an extremely lavish affair with lots of guests and the proverbial white horse. The food costs some have posted will get you weenies and beans. A served, plated meal will run about $130 a person including taxes and tips. Then you have hors d'oeuvres before the meal that will be about $40 a person. A buffet may or may not cost a bit less. That does not include liquor, which does not appear to be an issue here. We are talking about $66K for food alone. If you use a live band, which I would think is appropriate for that number of people, it would be another $10K. Then there are limos, decorations, flowers, photographer, videographer, etc., etc., etc. For that many people you will have to use a hotel or a very large venue. Clothes may or not be a big item. We went to a friend's son's wedding a few years ago that was at a beach. I shouldn't have worn a suit - they were shoeless :D . Remember, a wedding is like a house renovation - no matter how much you think it will cost, it will cost more :moneybag .

DS's 80 person wedding was held in a county park with a beautiful flower garden for the ceremony (gotta pay the clergy also) and an indoor hall that could accommodate no more than 130 people. The total cost, after all was said and done, came to about $35K. We split everything with the bride's parents down the middle, so it wasn't that expensive for either of us and it was a wonderful event. DW and I were married in a backyard with about 40 people and a deli platter. Total cost was under $1K. But that's another story.

If the bride's parents can afford it, then go for it. If not, the first thing to cut is the number of attendees. Unless you are very rich, high in a large company or some other job that requires lots of diplomacy in who you invite, that's really far too many people. But it's your life and your decision. Congrats on getting married and I wish you the best of luck.
neoptolemus412
Posts: 171
Joined: Sun Jul 28, 2013 3:54 pm

Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by neoptolemus412 »

NYnative wrote: Wed Aug 29, 2018 12:13 am I don't know how many here have recent experience with a wedding for one of your kids. DS was married in May and there were about 80 guests in attendance. We live in a somewhat high cost area, but there are many that are far higher. I don't know the intricacies of an Indian wedding, but I estimate that one for 400 people will cost well over $100K. I attended one about 10 years ago and it was an extremely lavish affair with lots of guests and the proverbial white horse. The food costs some have posted will get you weenies and beans. A served, plated meal will run about $130 a person including taxes and tips. Then you have hors d'oeuvres before the meal that will be about $40 a person. A buffet may or may not cost a bit less. That does not include liquor, which does not appear to be an issue here. We are talking about $66K for food alone. If you use a live band, which I would think is appropriate for that number of people, it would be another $10K. Then there are limos, decorations, flowers, photographer, videographer, etc., etc., etc. For that many people you will have to use a hotel or a very large venue. Clothes may or not be a big item. We went to a friend's son's wedding a few years ago that was at a beach. I shouldn't have worn a suit - they were shoeless :D . Remember, a wedding is like a house renovation - no matter how much you think it will cost, it will cost more :moneybag .

DS's 80 person wedding was held in a county park with a beautiful flower garden for the ceremony (gotta pay the clergy also) and an indoor hall that could accommodate no more than 130 people. The total cost, after all was said and done, came to about $35K. We split everything with the bride's parents down the middle, so it wasn't that expensive for either of us and it was a wonderful event. DW and I were married in a backyard with about 40 people and a deli platter. Total cost was under $1K. But that's another story.

If the bride's parents can afford it, then go for it. If not, the first thing to cut is the number of attendees. Unless you are very rich, high in a large company or some other job that requires lots of diplomacy in who you invite, that's really far too many people. But it's your life and your decision. Congrats on getting married and I wish you the best of luck.
Weddings and funerals are 2 life events on the opposite spectrum where culture trumps most other concerns. It's one of those things where the wedding is built into the Indian/Pakistani/Bangladeshi (desi culture) as a representation of how your family treats those within the community (for better or worse). It's a communal culture. You don't see grandparents in old folks homes for a reason. They live with their family their whole life. Money is collectively shared. I know countless adults whose parents paid for med/grad school, houses, living expenses, etc. well into their 40s. You see relatives quite often, sometimes daily. Drama can cause real strife in people's lives. A cheap wedding that cuts certain relatives or family friends, can cause so many problems that it's not worth it. Parents hold sway over children's lives many times. In short, a wedding that goes against cultural norms may destroy one's life b/c of family disowning a child (extreme example that does happen) or, at a minimum, cause a lot of drama that will lead to stress and bad relationships with people you'll see a dozen times a year the rest of your life. For Desis, if someone feels slighted, you will hear about it and that person will return the favor through some means one way or another.
tenkuky
Posts: 1211
Joined: Sun Dec 14, 2014 4:28 pm

Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by tenkuky »

And I'm not sure how one balances keeping the relatives happy/avoiding slights with not sliding into debt or compromising savings.
In my humble experience, a relative who is inclined to not like you will find a reason one way or the other :twisted:
Pigeon
Posts: 298
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:50 am

Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by Pigeon »

Weddings and funerals are 2 life events on the opposite spectrum where culture trumps most other concerns. It's one of those things where the wedding is built into the Indian/Pakistani/Bangladeshi (desi culture) as a representation of how your family treats those within the community (for better or worse). It's a communal culture. You don't see grandparents in old folks homes for a reason. They live with their family their whole life. Money is collectively shared. I know countless adults whose parents paid for med/grad school, houses, living expenses, etc. well into their 40s. You see relatives quite often, sometimes daily. Drama can cause real strife in people's lives. A cheap wedding that cuts certain relatives or family friends, can cause so many problems that it's not worth it. Parents hold sway over children's lives many times. In short, a wedding that goes against cultural norms may destroy one's life b/c of family disowning a child (extreme example that does happen) or, at a minimum, cause a lot of drama that will lead to stress and bad relationships with people you'll see a dozen times a year the rest of your life. For Desis, if someone feels slighted, you will hear about it and that person will return the favor through some means one way or another.
It might be a reasonable expectation to follow all these cultural expectations for the wedding if one were also following the cultural expectation that the culturally appropriate people (bride's parents) were paying for it.

Personally, I would feel no such pressure to follow tradition if I were being expected to foot a huge bill.
sc9182
Posts: 368
Joined: Wed Aug 17, 2016 7:43 pm

Re: Planning for an Indian wedding In NY/ NH area.

Post by sc9182 »

Pigeon wrote: Thu Aug 30, 2018 11:46 am It might be a reasonable expectation to follow all these cultural expectations for the wedding if one were also following the cultural expectation that the culturally appropriate people (bride's parents) were paying for it.

Personally, I would feel no such pressure to follow tradition if I were being expected to foot a huge bill.
True dat, but there seems to be some amount of dis-connect there. Culturally speaking both sides of parents sit together and discuss things over - nobody expects take a quarter-million loan to pay for full-blown wedding., if bride's parents (or for that matter groom's parents) are not able to afford it. People/relatives do get that!

If parents spent monies to raise a kid (whether its a girl or a boy) with good education, not much debt, leading to gainful employment - the new cultural expectation is - bride's parents are not going to pay for all of the costs of (or not be able to afford: due to cost incurred in raising kid, paying some/most for education and such) good old-fashioned lavish cultural wedding. In such lavish weddings (if were to be paid-for by Bride's side) groom's family (not the groom from own savings!) is expected to offer/present a few pounds of gold and/or diamonds/jewelry to the bride-to-be. Whether the value of such Jewelry, equal to cost of wedding's, it depends.

Times may have changed .. water under the bridge. Work with what you can and toward minimizing differences - including financial ones.
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