this thread is in the warlords forum but i'm gonna sneak a BtS-only related thought into it. i've never made a colony in BtS yet, none of my games have lasted that long until the current one. this game, i went to war and demolished a guy and kept his cities on another smallish continent. i decided not to take his capitulation because during the war i discovered steam power, found out i had no coal and he had one source. nobody else had steam power yet. i had this fear of teching him up to steam power so that i could demand it from him, and him trading my monopoly techs to everybody else waaaaaah. found out later it has my only sources of oil too, i picked the right guy to squash!
but the thought of colony expenses scared me too, along with the distance maintenance. at first i was thinking of building versailles over there. then i thought the palace, since it doesn't matter which city is the actual palace once i'm not in bureaucracy. realized in time that would make my original (bigger) continent pay colony prices so that would be REALLY bad.
so i built the forbidden palace over there. my thinking was that if i do later turn those cities into a colony, i get the right to build a forbidden palace again, since it's a national wonder and i'd have lost the city mine was built in. if i built versailles over there and then colonized 'em, i could never build versailles anywhere else or capture it from an AI who conveniently built it somewhere far from my palace.
i know FP doesn't cut down colony expenses but it did help with the distance. i think it really helped but i wonder if it was kind of permanoobish in some way that i don't know. i mean just the "build FP over there on the basis of i'd get it back if i later liberate 'em" part, not the being indecisive, of course that last part is permanoob *giggle*. his holy city/capital did have the time/hammers to build FP, i was in a golden age, so it wasn't a seriously huge problem to build it. game is still going and i still haven't liberated them, expenses are okay but i reserve the right to if i need to