Maid of Honor Advice
Can you still be a good Maid of Honor if you live a long distance away from the Bride?
The first thing to remember is that if you're even asking this question, your best friend thought you were a worthy maid of honor candidate despite your geographic handicap. You mean enough to the bride that she wants you to share in her wedding day bliss in a way that few others will get to. As a former maid of honor, let me tell you that there's nothing more amazing than being up close and personal as the bride and groom exchange rings and vows. You can see them tearing up, holding each other's hands; there's just no more incredible shared friend experience than that.
But being more realistic, can you really do everything the bride wants her maid of honor to do? Is the bride just caught up in her own emotional hyper-excited state unable to imagine the impracticality of a long distance maid of honor? Well yes, she probably is, but that doesn't mean you can't still be a supportive, caring participant in the wedding process.
Your most important responsibility is to lend moral support to the bride, on the wedding day but more importantly throughout the whole planning process. A long distance maid of honor can more than fulfill this by making frequent (and probably long!) phone calls, emails, and spending some quality time on instant messenger. This is really the only absolutely vital maid of honor obligation. The bride will need a good, compassionate ear as she goes through the stressful process of wedding planning.
Beyond that, the key is to be upfront with the bride about what you'll be capable of. Will you be able to fly in for the bachelorette party and/or bridal shower? Are you willing to plan these events from afar to fulfill your traditional maid of honor duties? Is the only plane ticket you can afford the one for the wedding itself? Can the bride manage to go dress shopping, pick a wedding venue, and address invitations without your help? A long distance maid of honor is a lot more successful when the bride has at least one bridesmaid who lives locally to pick up the slack.
As long as the bride understands what she can expect from you, then more power to both of you! Remember to call often, send links to suggested bridesmaid and even wedding dresses, send the bride flowers to show you're thinking of her. By maintaining contact, even across long distance, you can still be a world class maid of honor for your best female friend.