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Wedding Guest List: Getting It Together


After juggling important details, such as the budget and how you envision your big day, you're probably ready to get down to the business of setting up a wedding guest list. Do you want an intimate affair or foresee the biggest party in town? How much money do you have to spend on the reception? Answering the above questions will help you better focus on the number of people expected for the wedding guest list.

In the end, the number of people chosen will affect the overall:

• Location: Too many people will eliminate some reception and ceremony sites
• Budget: More people equals higher catering costs
• Mood: The more people, the merrier?

Wedding Guest List: The Beginning Stages

At some point, a bride and a groom settle down to decide who's in and who's out for the wedding guest list. Usually, the number of guests allotted to the bride and groom is split down the middle, but depending on individual needs – the final tally may fluctuate. In some cases, parents may play an important role in the planning and payment of a wedding, meaning they probably want a piece of the pie. It is not uncommon to see parents of the bride and groom share in the decision-making of the wedding guest list.

Once all interested parties are given an allowed limit, it's time to create separate wedding guest lists, which are later combined into one 'master list.'

Avoid Wedding Guest List Chaos

While you may want to invite everyone you know for your special day, it's just not possible with the majority of wedding guest lists. Some people need to chisel down their original lists, which means possibly hurting a few feelings. Avoid wedding guest list chaos by considering the following suggestions:

Eliminate Specific Categories: If you need to cut a few names from an original wedding guest list, start by eliminating certain categories, such as social groups and possibly coworkers.

Leave the Kids at Home: Some wedding guest lists do not include children for a multitude of reasons, especially when your wedding theme involves an evening filled with cocktails and dancing the night away. Not only will you save money by excluding younger guests, but you will also keep your guest list under control.

No Plus-Ones: While your cousin would love to bring her new boyfriend along for the wedding, gently explain to unmarried individuals and solo flyers that you're trying to include immediate family and friends on your wedding guest list and the space is pretty tight.

Once individual wedding guest lists have been comprised, share and revise. Remove any duplicates and combine all of the names on a single master list that includes their full names, address and phone number, and number of reserved seats.

Photos by Augie Chang

Last Updated: August 3, 2013 at 10:35 pm
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