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How To Get Through Wedding Season Without Losing All Your Friends

Hot paddling pools, questionable drinks and bountiful beige picnics – is there anything better than British summertime? The sun is finally shining so let’s make this a season to remember. Together with PayPal we’ve put together The Go All Out Guide: a one-stop shop for everything you could ever need to plan for the perfect summer day. So kick back on that lilo, take a sip of your…whatever that is...and take notes.
This summer, wedding season is back with a vengeance: all those pandemic engagements coming good, those COVID-postponed weddings back on the table, everyone reaching out and grabbing life after two years of staying at home. 
When your friends start getting married (often all at once) it can be overwhelming at the best of times. You forget what it’s like not to have to ask, "So how's the wedding planning going?" or be consumed by what the hell you’re going to wear to four different weddings in eight weeks. 
But don’t worry, we’re here to help. So: no more awkward chats! No more group drama! No more getting stuck talking to Uncle Tommy with his one tedious anecdote! Only good times, nice vibes and, obviously, going barefoot on the dance floor at the end of the night. 

Pace Yourself Financially...

Wedding season is a marathon, not a sprint. Emotionally, financially and – how do we put this? – indulgence-wise, you need to work within your limits and not be tempted to overstretch. If you’ve got four weddings this summer, you may well have four hen dos, too: that’s eight weekends of dancing, socialising and wearing your fanciest clothes. Be honest with yourself about what you can afford and try to stick to a budget that covers life as well as finance. 
There’s absolutely nothing wrong with rewearing an outfit, for example (very few people, if any, will notice). There are also cheaper options than buying a new outfit for each shindig: consider renting an outfit or swapping clothes with friends if you’re keen to switch up your look. Remember, if you feel good, you’ll look good. So maybe step away from the eight-inch heels – and definitely do not wear white.
When it comes to the gift, try not to feel pressured into spending more than you can afford. Have a look for bargains online – keep an eye out for flash sales and voucher codes, which you can often find doing the rounds on social media. Many retailers offer PayPal at checkout, which means you can pay easily, quickly and securely without putting in your payment details every time. So if you find yourself scrambling the morning of, you can rest assured that it won’t take long. 
Maybe there’s even something sentimental you can put together – a collage of photos or a handmade blanket that you know will match their living room – or perhaps it’d be more cost-effective to team up with the rest of your friendship group to make a bigger contribution to the honeymoon. Your friends won’t want you to bankrupt yourself for them: remember that. 

...And Pace Yourself Emotionally 

Between bridal events you should schedule in nights to do absolutely nothing. Watch reality TV, eat a salad and only move if you need another cup of tea. If someone asks if you fancy going out, you’re busy. Your body needs to rest, your blisters need to heal and your bank balance needs a break. Trust us, you’ll feel so much better for it. 
Oh, and you know you can leave a wedding before the end, right? If it’s your third in as many weeks, no one will be offended or think any less of you (and you’ll be the life and soul of the post-wedding brunch). An Irish exit is the easiest way – just slip out into the night and send a quick text telling the bride how wonderful she is and what a beautiful day you’ve had. 

Hen Do Etiquette 

Forget parliamentary negotiations, hen dos are the premier political minefield facing humanity at this time. A bunch of disparate babes thrown into a group chat then expected to gel seamlessly during a night or weekend? Things could get messy. 
Luckily, there are ways to avoid this. The first thing to do is to mute the group chat and only engage at times that suit you because it doesn’t need to take over your life. Suss out who else is on your wavelength and form an alliance – that way, when Lucy brings up that thing that Stacey said to her in 2018, you can team up to change the subject or shuffle one of them off into the loos to get it out of their system. 
A lot of hen do fracas arises from finances: there’s always someone who feels that they’re paying more than their fair share, or someone trying to get away without contributing as much. You can use PayPal as an easy way to pay back friends or split payments using the app. It only takes a few moments so there’s no excuse! Top tip: a PayPal account is required to send or receive money so sign up before you head out. 
Just remember, this weekend is not about you. It’s about your friend having the best send-off into married life and everyone having a good time along the way. So always check the bride has a drink, is enjoying herself and is being kept out of the drama. If all else fails: march everyone to the nearest karaoke.

Don’t Be Afraid To Go Solo 

Numbers are tight and you don’t have a plus one but don’t worry, you can still have a blast at a wedding when you’re flying solo, even if the wedding is overseas. If you’re off to a foreign country, it’s the perfect chance to tag on a holiday. Holidaying alone is great because you can do what you want whenever you feel like it, though you could also persuade a friend to join you pre- or post-nuptials for a few days in the sun. 
Remember your hen do allies? Seek them out before the ceremony and you’ll have someone to sit with. There’s plenty of small talk to be had with new faces too – what a lovely service, do you have enough confetti, how do you know the happy couple – which can lead to more interesting conversations over the wedding breakfast. Try to be your most adventurous self and if all else fails, remember you probably won’t see many of these people again. Tell them secrets, bust out your best dance moves and sneak out to the gardens for a breather if you need a break. 

Enjoy It! 

Even if the lead-up has been all stress, you are going to have a good time at the wedding. We promise. A wedding is, at its heart, a gorgeous thing: a celebration of love and a reminder of how important your friends are to you. 
So get dolled up then get stuck in. Wrestle for the bouquet, lend grandma your lippy, clear the dance floor and do the worm, talk to people you don’t know, get your requests in to the DJ early and commandeer a disposable camera for a selfie with the bride. 
Then get ready to do it all again next weekend... 
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