One of the biggest challenges couples face during the wedding planning process is deciding who (and who will not) make the guest list cut for the Big Day! We know family and close friends will more than likely be on the list, but where do you draw the line? Second Cousins, Friends of Friends, or Friends Plus Ones, how do you decide? We have broken down the best steps couples can take to ensure they have everyone on their list necessary!
1. Real Talk.
Sit down with your Soon-To-Be and discuss what number would be comfortable (and within budget!) for you to invite. Draw up an initial guest list, just the two of you, and see where the numbers stand when you come together with your closest friends and family. From here, it is time to discuss with your family on how many people they can invite. Yes, we know this sounds silly, but trust us, they will have a friend or second cousin they feel ABSOLUTELY necessary to have in attendance.
2. Consider the Budget & Venue.
Dependent on where your wedding is set to take place, this will help determine minimum and maximum numbers. Some venues will charge an additional fee for a lower guest count, and are legally only able to hold a certain amount on the opposite end of the spectrum. Be sure you speak with your venue about these additional costs and maximum numbers before booking. This could lead to some problems later down the line when you realize you can't invite Third Cousin Francine because there just is not space. Budget will also play a factor here. If each guest meal will cost on average $45-$80/person (not including alcohol), be sure you are including this within your budget as the guest count grows. According to the 2017 Cost of Love study from RateSupermarket.ca, the average wedding costs $42,400.56, and if this is based on 150 guests, it would cost a couple $282.67/guest to attend.
3. When Was The Last Time You Spoke?
Be sure to ask yourself this question about guests on the list who you have not been in contact with lately. Invite people both you and your fiancé know, who you’ve spent time with together and who play an important part in your life. Or alternatively, invite those friends who you may not know together, but have played an important role in your life in a different stage of your life. There is no need to be inviting your entire First Grade Classroom, when you really only speak to your one best friend from there.
4. Stand Strong.
Don’t bend the rules, because it will get out of control. As soon as you start making exceptions for one person, you’ll soon realize you have to make exceptions for others – and then you’ll find yourself back at square one. There may be those individuals who do feel left out on the Big Day, but if they are not close to you, they have to understand.
You only want to be surrounded by those who have watched you learn, grow, and love throughout your life, and in your relationship as you become Newlyweds. Stick to your guns when making your lists, stay balanced with the budget, and understand that this is your Big Day - and you get the final say. Wishing you all the best as you make your Wedding Day Guest Lists Little Birdies!