Niagara Falls Wedding Advice – How To Create Your Wedding Day Guest List
There’s no way around it – deciding who’s going to be invited to your Niagara Falls or Niagara-on-the-Lake wedding is one of the most agonizing things about planning a wedding. You’re going to be worried about hurting people’s feelings – and some might feel slighted that they weren’t invited – but you can’t invite everyone. To avoid minimal heartbreak, you need to make the decision about who to invited based on several factors. We’re here to help you decide who makes the final cut. Let me give you some old fashioned Niagara Falls wedding advice on this one:
Dividing the Guest Count
Generally, the bride and groom split the number of invites in half for fairness. However, if the bride has eight sisters and the groom is an only child, these guidelines are negotiable. Whichever way you divvy up the guest list is entirely up to you, but make sure you do it in a manner that both of you feel allows you to invite the most number of people that matter
Tied to determining how the guest list is divvied up is the age-old question of who is paying for this wedding? If your parents are paying for the entire wedding, you must be willing to allow them a certain percentage of invitees. For example, the couple gets half of the guests and the parents gets a quarter each. This does not mean you should allow your parents to hijack your wedding. This is, after all, your wedding and you want people you know to attend. You can always decline their assistance and invite whomever you want.
Wedding Budget Cuts
Once you have an idea of who’s paying and what your budget can allow, you’ll have a good idea of how many guests you can actually invite. For instance, if your wedding is $150 a plate and you want to invite 300 people, but your entire budget is $5,000, this is not going to work. You need to be realistic about how many people you are inviting.
Create a Master List
While you’ve set some parameters to start, now let your imagination run wild and create a master list of everyone you would want to invite if money wasn’t an issue. This could include all your second cousins, your childhood friends and all your co-workers.
Start the Cut With Kids
You already know you need to whittle down the master list, so a great place to start is by determining whether you want to invite children. There are a few things to keep in mind with this decision. One, if you don’t invite children, some adults might not attend. Two, it must be a blanket rule. You don’t want to tell some people no kids and then they show up and see other kids there. That is a guaranteed way to offend.
Other Possible Cuts
The plus guest is always a debatable issue and a great way to cut down on potential guests. If your cousin has been living with someone for more than a year, chances are you’ll invite the plus one. But do you want to send out a plus one for everyone who might be invited as a single? We didn’t say making these choices would be easy! Other possible people you will want to cut are people who drink too much (if you don’t know them well), business acquaintances, ex-girlfriends/boyfriends and anyone from whom you are estranged.
Make Some Cutting Rules
And stick to them. The best way to eliminate people from your guest list is by coming up with a set of rules you both deem fair and that you can live with. Here are some examples
- If you have never spoken to or met someone
- If you haven’t spoken to them (not email) in three years
- You’re inviting them only because you feel guilty
- If you see someone only because they are friends with a mutual friend
- If they’re out of town, would you visit them when you were in that city?
- Would you still be friends if the situation (ie work) you knew them from wasn’t there?
- In five years, will you look at your wedding photos and think, who’s that?
The A and B Lists
While this might not be advisable because of deadlines, you could consider an A and B list. This is a great way to get the most people to your wedding because inevitably, you’re going to have to leave some people you care about out. The A list contains your closest family and friends. The B list consists of people you really really want to come but can’t invite on the A list because of all the other factors we’ve already discussed. When you get regrets from the A list, you can invite the B list. It’s also good to have a B list because, generally, 20 per cent of your invited guests won’t be able to make it. You might be able to streamline this process through a “save the date” campaign before your actual invitations are sent out. The B list can also have a different RSVP date to accommodate more guests.
Just as you’ve created all your lists and feel in control of the list, don’t get trapped in the last minute add-on conundrum. If you’re talking to someone and they say, “I’m so excited to go to your wedding,” and they didn’t make the A or B list, don’t say “Me too,” and then run home and add them. Prepare yourself for these potentially awkward conversations by having a polite, yet firm, response. For example, “We want to invite everyone but because of our budget and the venue space, we aren’t able to.” And leave it at that. Then steer the conversation in another direction.