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Must-Know Tips to Creating Your Wedding Guest List



Wedding Guest List

Must-Know Tips to Creating Your Wedding Guest List

It is very easy to start writing out your guest list only to realize a couple hours later that you have 400 or more people on it! Ahh!!!! Although deciding who to invite and who not to invite can be a pretty difficult task. We would like to provide you with our top tips and what to consider before you even begin.Let’s start from the beginning.

Set Guidelines

  • What is your budget? Keep in mind that each additional guest will require you to provide another meal. Not only that! Costs will also increase in stationary, chairs, china, silverware and glassware. Additions of about 8 or more guests will require a whole new table, linen, and centerpiece (just to name a few things). These items can add up quickly and depending on the vendors you are working with, this can mean that you are looking at an addition of at least $150.00- $200.00 per guest.

  • Who is paying for the wedding? This can be a sensitive subject in itself. Keep in mind that if you are receiving contributions from others, it is not uncommon to be asked to add a few of their friends to the list. We recommend that before you receive any contributions, that you and your fiancé have come up with a clear vision of who you would like to be in attendance. Having clear expectations going in will help make everything else run smoother.

  • Where are you getting married? If you have your eyes set on a rustic and vintage farmhouse, one that holds up to 150 guests, do not over invite! We typically see about 15%-20% of invited guests unable to attend.

  • Put a limit on extended family. This one, my friends, can make or break your desired count. Whether you make your decisions based on how long it’s been since you have seen a certain cousin, or you put a limit on 2nd cousins in general. Make sure that it is consistent across the board. You do not want to have any hurt feelings and making an allowance for one could cause you to make another and another.

  • Children and “Plus Ones”. If you would like your wedding to be a completely “adult-only” affair or look to have an intimate wedding with only your closest friends and family, this is a decision that will align back to the vision you have for your day and we think that there is absolutely no right or wrong answer

Create a Spreadsheet


Wedding Guest List

  • I can’t tell you how important it is to keep your guest list on an excel file. It will make life so much easier. Make sure to add your guest’s full name, spouse name, full address, phone number, email address and children’s name (if you are inviting them)

  • Make columns for all of your important events (or reminders) that these guests may or may not be invited to. (Ex. Engagement Party, Save The Date, Invitation, Rehearsal Dinner) Utilize the column to make note that you have sent out their invitations and also when you have received their RSVP. Keep track of your “yes’” and “no’s”

  • If you need to keep track of meal choices, add a column and label it “Meal Choices”. It will make life easier when sending over the counts to your caterer.

Organize it!

I happen to be obsessed with Excel and love that is such a simple way to keep yourself organized. Although the list above is not a complete list, it outlines some of the main tracking importances. You can make the spreadsheet as detailed as you would like!

If you have any questions reach out to us! Email us at or contact us HERE. Looking for more planning advice? Head here for tips on creating your wedding budget!

Happy Planning!!!

Nicole, Lisa and Lindsay

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