Wedding Guest List Tips

When you’re planning a wedding, one of the biggest determining factors (if not the biggest) is the guest list. Who should you invite?

From The Knot’s comprehensive list of expert wedding planning tips and tricks, we’ve pulled our top 5 tips for how to manage your guest list. These tips should help you plan a wonderful party that doesn’t cramp your style or break the budget.

Prioritize People: Although you may want to invite everyone, making a prioritized guest list will help in the case that you choose a venue that’s not large enough to accommodate everyone or you are struggling to fit everyone into your budget. At the top of the list are your immediate family and best friends (like your bridal party), then extended family and close friends, and lastly co-workers and family friends or neighbors.

Budget Friendly List: If you and your partner begin to realize the cost per person is too high for you to invite everyone, don’t be afraid to limit your guest list. According to The Knot, “half of your wedding budget goes to wining and dining your guests,” and it’s better to have fewer people attend so you can select the menu and venue you really want than include everyone.

Kids Policy: Another piece of sage advice from The Knot is to have a consistent kids policy for your wedding. They give you four choices, “You can welcome children with open arms; you can decide to have an ‘adults only’ wedding; you can include immediate family only; or, you can hire a child care service to provide day care either at the reception space, in a hotel room or at a family member’s home.” It may be best to avoid having some kids and not others to thwart hurt feelings.

Plus One’s: Before deciding whether your single friends and family can bring a plus one, visualize how you’d seat your guests at reception tables. Make sure your guest list isn’t getting too long, but consider where people will be sitting and what might make them more comfortable during the reception.

Ample Space for Guests: The Knot suggests “25 to 30 square feet per guest” at your venue to ensure everyone, including staff like wedding vendors, will have a comfortable amount of space to enjoy the wedding and reception. Don’t forget your guests will need space on the dance floor to get their groove on!

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