Hostesses With The Mostest > Entertaining and Hospitality

Arranging Transportation for the Elderly and Non-Drivers

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RubyCat:
I believe this subject has come up in the last few months, but I don't recall what the conclusion was.  What is the host's obligations as far as arranging transportation when inviting somebody who does not or cannot drive?

Dh and I are having a party this Saturday.  We live an hour's drive away from my granddad, who recently gave up his license and my youngest daughter who has never gotten one.  I feel that if I invited them, I should make some sort of arrangement to get them here, especially my granddad who is quite elderly.  Youngest daughter could, in theory, take the bus but it is a bit expensive.

My oldest daughter would be willing to drive granddad even though it will take her out of her way but says there is no way she is able to stand being in a car with youngest daughter for the hour's drive.  Youngest daughter is kind of hard to take sometimes and I totally understand where oldest daughter is coming from.  Youngest daughter and granddad live in the same building.

I guess I could drive two round trips to get them myself, but I have things to take care of at home before and after the party.  Spending 4 hours in the car transporting them is a lot. (An hour to go get them, an hour to bring them to my house, an hour to bring them home, and hour to drive myself home.) I get exhausted just thinking about it.

I'm leaning toward just doing all the driving myself but I'm wondering about what ettiquette requires. And also how much responsibility guest lies with the guests?  How much does somebody's age and health play into it?

Oh, and one other question.  The following weekend we are having another party involving many of the same people.  If I do all the driving for the first party, am I obligated to do all the driving the following week?  I might be able to pull it off the first week but because of my work schedule, it would be exhausting to try to pull it off the second week.






LadyL:

--- Quote from: RubyCat on September 25, 2013, 04:31:15 PM ---I believe this subject has come up in the last few months, but I don't recall what the conclusion was.  What is the host's obligations as far as arranging transportation when inviting somebody who does not or cannot drive?


--- End quote ---

I don't think you have any obligation in the sense of it being polite to provide transportation and impolite not to do so. I do think that it is a nice thing, if you can swing it, to help make things easier for people - but I wouldn't say it's required.

I vote for oldest daughter drives grand dad and youngest takes the bus. If the youngest is difficult and doesn't have a license I don't think she is owed a favor. Grandpa gets a break due to age but should be looking into options like a senior transport service or moving closer to immediate family if transportation is going to be a frequent issue.

I do think that if you are hosting you really shouldn't be expected to also transport guests.

camlan:
Etiquette does not require that a host provide transportation to an event.

However, family feeling might.

In my case, when I invite someone who is elderly and who might feel that asking for transportation would be an imposition, I figure out ahead of time who might be available to drive them. Then I include in the invitation, "If you need a ride, please let me know. Tom/Sue/Bill will be happy to pick you up." Mostly, I do this because I know my elderly relatives and know that they wouldn't dream of asking for a ride and they really aren't up to taking public transportation at their ages. And I want them there.

But for someone who isn't ill/infirm/elderly, I leave it up to them to figure out how to get to my house. They have more options--calling a cab, taking public transportation, asking a friend for a lift, asking a family member for a lift. I still want them there, but expect them to be able to figure out how to get where they need to be on their own.

We recently had a family party. Aunt Alice was told, "If your kids can't give you a ride, Bill or Sam can. Just let us know." But the younger cousins just out of college, who don't have their own cars yet, were just invited. It was up to them to call their parents/siblings/other cousins to figure out the logistics.

RubyCat, I see your dilemma is made worse because your DD and Grandfather live in the same building. It's hard to pick up one of them without giving a ride to the other.

In your case, I don't think I would offer rides. It would be just too much time out of your day. And you'd probably have to pick them up fairly early, so you could get home to cook and do the other prep, and then you'd have two extra people hanging around the house, possibly getting in your way as you try to get everything ready.

So, in your shoes, I'd probably arrange a ride for Grandfather, with Oldest Daughter, if that works. Then I'd either tell Youngest Daughter she's on her own, or, most likely, I'd offer to pay her bus fare. Depends on how much you want her there.

And if Youngest Daughter finds out Grandfather is getting a ride and she isn't, I'd point out why--her behavior is such that her own sister doesn't want to give her a ride. Give her something to think about as she takes the bus back and forth.

rose red:
Etiquette doesn't require you to do any driving at all.  If a guest can't get transportation, they can decline the invitation.  It's nice if you drive because they are family and you want them there, but there is no etiquette rule that says you must (I don't think).  After all, what if you invite 7 coworkers and none of them can drive?  Are you responsible for them too?  I say no.

That said, since the reason Granddad can't drive is because of age, it would be nice to find some way for him to get there.  That seems taken care of by your older DD. 

As for the youngest DD, she's going to keep facing situations like this.  She can spend money to take the bus or decline the invitation.  A bus ticket may be expensive, but so are car payments, insurance, gas, and maintenance which I assume your olderst DD has.

LadyL:

--- Quote from: rose red on September 25, 2013, 05:04:29 PM ---
As for the youngest DD, she's going to keep facing situations like this.  She can spend money to take the bus or decline the invitation.  A bus ticket may be expensive, but so are car payments, insurance, gas, and maintenance which I assume your olderst DD has.

--- End quote ---

Another option is a rental or zipcar - it might cost $30-60 for the day, but that's nothing compared to the average monthly car payment, insurance, and cost of gas.

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