Shrinking The Guest List


A smaller wedding is sometimes unavoidable, whether that’s for money reasons, venue capacity, guest number restrictions or a change of heart as to the sort of wedding you want.

We’ve put together six steps to follow to get the guest list down without losing your mind with stress.

1. Assess the effect on the budget

Whatever happens with guest numbers, the more you have, the hire the cost. Likewise, reducing numbers will also affect cost, so make sure you know by how much. There may well be a point where reducing numbers doesn’t reduce the overall cost by much.

2. Only invite people who will be part of your future

Think about who you will have in your married life and err on the side of picking people from your future, not your past. For instance, if you haven’t spoken to your friend from high school in over a year, then don’t feel obliged to invite them out your shared history. It’s likely you won’t speak to them for a year after the wedding either.

3. Ask your parents not to go overboard with invites

Even if your parents have paid for the wedding, it’s still your wedding, so gently explain to them how much it matters that you know all the people attending.

4. Make three lists

Make three lists – one for close family, one for close friends who will be with you for the long run, and a third for everyone else. You might be surprised at how many people are on the thru list and how easy it is to reduce that list down.

5. Cut out plus-ones

It’s important that your guests are happy, which may mean them bringing a date. But if numbers are tight it makes sense that established partners or long-term girlfriends/boyfriends should get preference over plus-ones who have only been on the scene a few weeks.

6. Make the wedding child-less

This is a sensitive subject, but children can find a wedding long and boring, particularly kids in the 2-10 age bracket. And don’t the parents deserve a night out? It’s a judgement call, but don’t dismiss it as a possibility.

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