My ex-husbands best friend invited our 15yr old daughter to join their family on their spring break vacation, who pays for what?

by Ruth
(Boise, ID.)

Miss Manners,


My ex-husbands best friend sent me a text inviting our 15yr old daughter to join their family for their spring break vacation this April (our daughters have been great friends for many years). The trip is planned for a tropical, expensive location that I cannot afford. My daughters friends family is wealthy & my ex-husband is a surgeon. The "friend" asked me to pay for half of my daughters airfare. The request came after I thanked them for including her & offered to send her with money to contribute to her food & activities. I was surprised at the request. I know it is a wonderful opportunity for my daughter, but I am unsure of what I should be responsible for financially at this point?

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Trips and Vacations
by: Ms P Etiquette

Hello Ruth~

This situation comes up more often than we realize.

You will be responsible for any financial contribution the host requests. It is certainly appropriate for the hosting family to ask you to pay for half the airfare or any other expenses. Only you can decide if you can afford this trip for your daughter.

Having the invitation presented to you with all the details including the financial arrangements, before you were asked to respond would have been the ideal, of course.

If you cannot afford the trip, it is very appropriate for you to decline without giving a detailed explanation, i.e. you cannot afford it. Simply say, for example, you do not feel it is a good idea at this time.

One steadfast rule of good manners is avoiding creating any embarrassment for yourself or others. Please remember, that just because someone has more money than you do, does not make them responsible to carry more of the financial load.

Good luck,

Ms Practical Etiquette

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