wedding-invitationSo, you’ve chosen the date for your big day, but who will you invite to your wedding?

Determining the guest list is a very important step in the wedding planning process. The number of guests that you will be able to invite depends on the kind of wedding that you are planning to have and the budget that you have to work with.

Do you plan to have an intimate gathering or something more extravagant where you invite everyone you’ve ever met? The more people you invite, the more expensive your wedding will be.

If you’re trying to stretch your budget, cutting down the number of guests is one of the first things you should do. Here are some points to consider when making your guest list.

– Family members take priority and should be first on the list. Be sure to account for the number of invitations you’ll be giving to your parents to give to their friends.

– When you allow your guests to bring someone along, your costs start to rise dramatically. Will you let single people bring a date? Will you let guests bring their children along?

– Inviting children can really cost you. Even if you specify “no children,” people may RSVP with them or show up with them anyway. This is your day, you don’t have to invite everyone and you don’t have to invite their kids. However, be prepared for people to send regrets if they can’t bring the kids along.

– Is there anyone you absolutely can’t stand and don’t want at your wedding? Then don’t invite them! But make sure both you and your partner agree with this decision.   Same goes for inviting people who you think won’t attend—because they might actually show up and then you’ll be sorry! Be wary of inviting people who are known for starting drama or creating scenes—you don’t want that at your wedding.

– If you’re trying to figure out how to narrow your list of prospective guests, do not invite anyone with whom you have not had a meaningful conversation within the last year.

– Keep in mind that not everyone will RSVP. Sometimes people forget to RSVP, but they may show up to the wedding anyway!!

– How many guests are local, how many are from out of town?  Guest living locally will be more likely to attend than guests who are coming from a distance and will have to pay to travel.

Making the guest list can be one of the most stressful parts of planning your wedding. Take plenty of time to make the list, there’s no need to rush through this process. Make sure that you and your partner agree on who you want to be there before inviting anyone!