Can’t Make it to a Friend’s Wedding? Here are 5 Things You Can Do

When your friend first got engaged, it was an exciting time that you probably celebrated with your mutual friend group. You all probably talked about what the wedding would be like, where the honeymoon would happen and what you all should wear.

No matter how badly you wanted to be there to support your friend, life happened. Now you can’t make it to the ceremony like you meant to.

You’re not a bad friend for not being able to go, but there are things you can do to help make you feel better about declining your invitation. Check out these five things you can do for your friend to celebrate their wedding without being there.

1. Let Them Know ASAP

It’s crucial to let your friend know as soon as possible that you can’t make it to their ceremony. If you wait too long, they may pay for your dinner or reserve your hotel room. If they know sooner than later that you won’t be able to go, it’ll save them time and money in the future.

There are fewer stakes early on in the wedding planning process, but if you just found out you can’t go and the wedding is weeks away, still say something immediately. The finer details can be worked out, but the news will be easier for your friend to hear if they know you didn’t hold onto the information for a long time.

2. Make a Date

After your friend gets back from their wedding or their honeymoon, you can still celebrate with them. They’ll enjoy being treated to a delicious dinner or fun activity where you can hear all about how the wedding went. It’s a thoughtful way to say you still appreciate and care about them.

Think about how you and your friend normally hang out. How can you do something similar, but make it extra special? Go the extra mile to make your date stand out from all the other times you’ve hung out together. Decorate your home with wedding-themed balloons and streamers or write over your car’s windows in washable paint about your friend getting married.

3. Send Them Flowers

Flowers are a classic way to say that you love someone, so send your friend a beautiful bouquet to apologize for not making it to their wedding. This is a great option to use if your friend is in a different state but you still want to make a thoughtful gesture.

4. Go to Other Wedding Events

If you know you have to decline your invitation early on, talk with your friend about if you can attend their other wedding events. They’ll throw a bridal shower or a bachelorette party that you can attend and celebrate the wedding that way. Your friend will appreciate that you made the effort to go and have fun with them for the sake of their wedding when you could.

5. Don’t Change Your Mind

The worst thing you can do after declining your wedding invitation is to change your mind. After you cancel, the bride will have to adjust her catering and hotel reservations which could change the final fee she has to pay. Those may not be able to change back if you find a way to cancel your intruding plans.

It would also be frustrating for your friend if you found a way to go after canceling, then had to cancel again if your first solution didn’t work. If you have to cancel at all, it has to be your final choice for the sake of making things easy for your friend.

Get Creative With Your Efforts

Try out these simple solutions so you can still celebrate your friend’s wedding even if you can’t go. Even if these don’t seem right for your situation, you can still get creative with your efforts and find a way to make it up to them.

About the Author


Kacey Bradley is the blogger behind The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Kacey graduated with a degree in Communications while working for a lifestyle magazine. She has been able to fully embrace herself with the knowledge of nature, the power of exploring other locations and cultures, all while portraying her love for the world around her through her visually pleasing, culturally embracing and inspiring posts. Along with writing for her blog, she has written for sites like U.S. News, SUCCESS, Ruffled, and more!

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