Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Wedding Planning: 9 No-Fail Tips for Trimming the Guest List

wedding blog, wedding ideas, wedding guest list, how to cut the guest list, wedding planning

I hear from couples all the time about what causes them stress during the wedding planning process. My job is to help alleviate that stress, so I’m happy to give tips and advice to address problem areas. One of the most common complaints I hear from couples pertains to creating their guest list.
It’s so important to pare down your guest list. As I’ve mentioned before, the tighter you get that list, the more your budget will stretch. Couples get pressured from many fronts on who to invite to their wedding, so I thought it would be helpful to offer a few tips on how to get your list more manageable.

1. Start big and whittle down. It’s a good idea to start with a list that includes everyone that you, your future spouse, and each of your sets of parents want to invite to the wedding. From there, you can whittle it down using some of the tips below. What’s nice about having this extensive list is that you’ll have the names of potential people to invite if your budget stretches more than you thought, or if less of your initial guest list can attend than you thought.

2. Set some parameters . . . and stick to them. Adhere to some rules of thumb when deciding whether or not to invite someone, such as whether you’ve spoken to or heard from them in more than a year, or if you have never even mentioned them to your future spouse, or if you’re only inviting them out of guilt. If those things pertain to someone you’re considering inviting, don’t.

3. Prioritize your list. Go through and prioritize your list in order of importance from those guests
whom you can’t imagine not being there to those whom you’re inviting largely out of obligation. When determining how many guests you can afford to include, start with the most important guests first.

4. Consider making it adults only. We love kids, but if you’re faced with reducing your guest count, consider leaving them off the list.

5. Take financial contributions into account. If anyone besides you and your future spouse is contributing to your wedding budget, they should have some say in who can attend. How much say they get should be based on what percentage of the wedding they’re paying for. Be clear on how many guests they can invite.

6. Specify on the invitation exactly who is invited. If you want to avoid any unexpected “Plus Ones” (or Twos, or Threes), make sure the invitation states exactly who is invited. If your cousin Stella thinks she “might” have a date for your wedding in three months but you can only afford to feed her, politely let her know that your budget can’t accommodate the potential guest.

7. Don’t bow to family or peer pressure. Barring the above mention of financial contributors, no one should have any say in your guest list besides the two of you. It’s your money, your wedding, and your decision who celebrates it with you. Stand firm so you don’t overspend.

8. Keep your plans largely to yourself. If you go around the office talking about your wedding plans, your coworkers may start telling you how much they’re looking forward to attending the wedding. If you don’t want a bunch of people inviting themselves to your wedding, keep those plans to yourself.

9. Be prepared to say no. Think of how you can politely address situations that are bound to come up where people want or expect an invitation but they didn’t make the guest list. It’s perfectly fine to tell them that you wish you could invite them, but your budget won’t allow it.


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