I can already hear the sighs. It makes me sigh, too. Ugh.
Deciding on the wedding guest list is the hardest part of wedding planning. It was for me at least, and I hear this from a lot of engaged couples. It's so difficult because the guest list typically has the consideration of many parties, primarily the bride and groom, the bride’s mom and dad and the groom’s mom and dad. According to The Knot, the average wedding in 2014 hosted 136 guests. Divide that guest list count equally between all parties and you, the bride and groom, get to invite 45 people. After 29 years for brides and 31 for grooms (The Knot, 2014 report), most people know well over that many people, which makes deciding on your final wedding guest list no easy feat. So you can see how those plus ones become valuable real estate.
Before I got married, I thought everyone should be able to bring a date to the wedding. But when I was the bride and learned just how difficult it was to put together my wedding guest list, well, let’s just say, I turned the corner. Ignorance is bliss, isn’t it?
I’m no expert, but I do have the experience of planning a wedding and having to decide who to invite and who not to invite. Through that experience, this is my advice:
If you have friends who are not married or are not in serious committed relationships, which I deem one year or longer, then only extend a plus one if the budget allows.
Always include plus ones for immediate family and the bridal party. It’s the least you can do for them; they are spending more money than you know on your wedding.
If you think someone’s feelings are going to get hurt because you can’t give them a plus one, then call them and have an honest conversation about the challenges you are facing. In most cases, that person will understand. You could even say that if the wedding invitations start rolling in and you have extra room, you would be happy to extend a plus one to them.
I hope my advice has been helpful. What challenges are you facing while wedding planning? I’d love to give my thoughts to your questions in a future blog post. Shoot me email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I can't wait to hear from you!
P.S. - Before you go, don't forget to snag 20 creative ways to personalize your wedding right here!