Dilemma: The other bridesmaids have their heart set on a girls' getaway, but it's simply not within your means right now.
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If it’s the bride’s wish to plan a girls’ getaway to Vegas, don’t panic just yet: resorts have group packages that can be very affordable, and discount travel sites can turn up low-priced airfare. Check out all of the details and do diligent research before saying "yay" or "nay." In addition to travel and lodging, you'll need to factor in bar tabs, celebratory dinners, and other expenses, which can add up.
If you find that the cost is just way too high and the bride doesn't have her heart set on a particular location—Vegas may have been the maid of honor's idea—find fun places you can visit that are closer to home. For example, a boutique bed-and-breakfast nearby would give you the same bonding time, and you'd be able to spend more on activities, like a fine dinner, winery tour, or shopping. Also, use your connections to see if you can stay at a loved one's beach or ski house, or check out VRBO.com for vacation rentals at a fraction of the cost of a hotel.
Also, consider the time of year. There's no rule that the bachelorette party has to take place a few weeks before the wedding—you can save 50% or more by booking in an off-peak travel season.