# 2476 Better Late Than Whatever

Q. I’m invited to a Chanukah party in another section of town and I’m being picked up about a half an hour before the shekia to be able to attend. Should I light candles before I leave or after I come back around 10 PM? Can I just light or participate with some money with my host?
A. On question 421 regarding lighting Chanuka candles before sunset we wrote: “Shulchan Aruch (O.H. 672: 1) rules that “you do not light the menorah before the shkiah – and one opinion is that in need you may light after plag hamincha” [one and a quarter hour (zmaniyos) before nightfall]. Mishna Berura (ibid. 3) adds that you can light with a brocho.
Nonetheless Shevet Halevy (4: 66) advises that it is better to light using an agent and on the right time rather than lighting oneself before the shkiah (after plag). A few Poiskim also maintain that you should avoid kindling before the shkia and if you have too you should not recite a brocho (Piskey Teshuvos ibid.Nitey Gavriel, Chanukah 3: 11).
Horav Shlomo Miller’s Shlit’a opinion is in general to avoid kindling before shkiah unless it is utterly necessary, such as Erev Shabbos when we do recite a brocho.”
The Rov’s opinion is that in your case it is better to light at night, when you return home at night.
Rabbi A. Bartfeld as revised by Horav Shlomo Miller Shlit’a

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