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Wedding: The Ins and Outs of Wedding Guest Lists Advice from Weddingbells’ Editor-in-Chief Alison McGill

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Let's back track a bit. Last time I interviewed Weddingbells’ Editor-in-Chief Alison McGill the topic was wedding dress shopping. Today's topic is something that ALL brides dread.. The wedding guest list. This is the one part that has caused me so many headaches! I'm trying to keep my wedding small but all these people are popping up out of nowhere! Trying to accommodate everyone- plus listening to your parents requests is stressful. Hope this helps someone out there! 

Editor-in-Chief Alison McGill tackles my wedding guest list questions

How do you pick who comes to your wedding?
On your wedding day you want to be surrounded by those nearest and dearest to you (both family and friends). Whether you invite all of them will depend of course on your wedding budget and the size of the guest list you can accommodate. If your wedding is super-small and intimate, you may be challenged to narrow down exactly whom you invite. There are no hard and fast rules on who must be there—invite the people who mean the most in your life, who are extra-special. Wedding invites are a delicate subject and often come with their fair share of drama. It’s always good to be prepared for backlash because it happens. Often.

Are plus ones necessary?
Plus ones are not necessary but it’s often expected. Your guest will expect to invite a guest to accompany them to the wedding. If you are not extending the invitation to a plus one, be sure that is clearly indicated on your guest’s invitation. You may hear from the guest asking to confirm that a plus one is not invited. Taking it one step further, your guest may write in the name of their plus one even though you have indicated the invitation is for them alone. Once again be prepared to deal with this situation as you may have a disgruntled wedding guest on your hands.

How early in advance should you send out your invites?
Wedding invitations should be sent out no later than three months in advance of your wedding day. Better yet, it’s always appreciated by your guests if you send a save the date far in advance of your wedding day. People love advance notice on events and you want to be sure they clear their calendar for your wedding day.

What should be in the invite? (Response cards, for example)
Your invitation package includes the actual wedding invite and an RSVP card (or an email address/website where guests can respond). Including a map of the ceremony and reception location is also a great idea.

RSVPS: Mailing them back vs. email corresponding?
Either way is acceptable. It all depends on what the couple is asking for. If there is an RSVP card enclosed, fill out and send back. If there is an email, then send your reply electronically.

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