Planning Pod Blog


Fresh insights and best practices for event professionals

Social butterfly? How to cut down your guest list

by | Mar 3, 2010 | Event Planning for Wedding Planners

March 3, 2010 – Some of us are blessed with many friends, which is great if you get a flat tire and need someone to come pick you up. But when it comes to planning the guest list for your wedding or event, it can almost seem like a hindrance. 44.5% of brides say their event will have fewer than 100 guests, and 70.7% are inviting no more than 150 guests. If you’re working on a limited budget and just can’t invite everyone, these tips are for you.

  • I recently heard a friend say that she’s not inviting anyone to her wedding that she wouldn’t have over to her house for dinner. I thought this was great advice! Whether it’s co-workers, customers, or that girl you run into tanning all the time, some people (even if you see them everyday) just aren’t that close to you!
  • Speaking of not being that close to you, how often to you really talk to all 500 of your friends on Facebook? We know you’re excited, but Facebook may not be the most tactful way to announce your engagement.
  • Be strong! You’re going to have to put your foot down sometimes, and that’s okay. Though they love you, parents are often guilty of mistaking your big day for a place to invite their friends and brag about you. It’s a gesture of love, and they want to show off your happiness, but if you’ve never met the friends they’re trying to invite it’s not inappropriate of you to say no. A nice way to avoid this confrontation is to give a set number of invitations to both sides’ parents and leave it at that.
  • It’s nice to be able to invite your single friends and add “and guest,” but sometimes it’s just not realistic. If you’re only inviting them, make it clear on the invitation. Simply write their name for them on the RSVP card. That way it will be obvious that the invite was only for them. In the end it’s your event, and you can invite (or not invite) who ever you want. If you decide not to allow single guests a +1 make sure that decision applies to all single guests. It’s tacky to allow some guests a +1 and others not.
  • Even if someone invited you to their event, you don’t have to reciprocate that invitation. More than anything, you should be comfortable and have fun at your wedding. You shouldn’t be worried about everyone else who’s there. On that note, cut down your bar tab and potential for disaster by cutting heavy drinkers from your list.
  • Kids too, can be cut from the list if necessary. Although most events incorporate children, if your event is late at night, or has a more cocktail theme, there is nothing wrong with cutting kids under 12, or even 18 if you’re so inclined.
  • There are lots of people who seem important in your life right now, but think of these relationships in terms of their longevity. Have these people been in your life for a while? Were they influential in you and your fiancés’ relationship? Will they still be in your life in 5 years? If the answer is no, reconsider including them on your list. Your day at the altar is not a social occasion; it’s a special, sacred even to share with the people you love.