The first thing we recommend to couples when they are kicking off their wedding planning in general is to figure out their guest list. We know it may feel like a weird first step, knowing who you are inviting when you don’t even know where the wedding is taking place or when, but it sets the foundation for your planning process. Well, your guest list is also the foundation for your invitation process.
Beginning Your List
Before you start your list, there are a few things you might want to decide so that you can provide direction and be on the same page as your partner when having guest list conversations with outside parties, like parents.
·Do you want to invite kids? If so, is there a minimum age? Only children of relatives or friends too?
Who do you want to give plus ones? Only married couples? People who are dating? Single Family members and single friends?
What is your ideal guest count? Are you hoping for a small wedding or open to a large one?
Next, you can take these principles and come up with a list of friends that you and your fiancé would like to invite. Simultaneously, you can request that you parents do this for family and family friends. Alternatively, you can develop the relatives list as well as a first draft. Once the lists are formed, you should plan to have a sit down with your parents to review the lists to make sure that you aren't missing any key members.
Some Things to Keep in Mind
We’ve found that 20-25% of invited guests will not attend
This rate might be higher if :
* it is a weekday or Sunday wedding
* a lot of people are coming from out of town
* it is a holiday weekend
* It is during a pandemic (still feels crazy that we need to add this one)
It’s a process
Sometimes making a guest list is like a series of negotiations. There may be people that your family feels are important to invite but you disagree. Try to be patient and do your best to accommodate requests when possible.
An A & B list
In Covid times, all rules are thrown out the window. If you need to reduce your list because of Covid restrictions, people will understand.
It doesn't hurt to create an A and B list for guests and send Save the Dates only to those on the A list. Hopefully by the time your date rolls around you will be able to send invitations to both lists.
Make your A list a conservative amount. Check with your venue and see what the current capacity limitations are and also how low they have been. Figure out a number that is comfortable for you within that range.