When I initially started working on our guest list, one of the big questions that came up was, “How many people that we invite will actually show up to this shindig?” Of course, when I turned to my trusted friend, Google, I found many contradicting answers. Some websites said to expect 10-20% guests to respond with a “no” while others insisted that your declined list would be closer to 40% of those that had been invited. However, something that I noticed as I jumped from page to page was that the number of total invited was significantly different for each of these statistics. If you are inviting 500 of your “closest” friends to your wedding, I’m sure you can expect the decline rate to look a little different than a guest list that includes only you, immediate family, and your BFFs.
So, while our number of guests that responded “no” actually fell somewhere in the middle of the numbers I found, I think it’s important to share our RSVP breakdown with you guys, because it could be similar to your experience, especially if your list of people to invite looks similar to ours. Or, our numbers could be the exact opposite of yours, and my stats would be totally irrelevant. Either way, the graphs are fun to look at
So, here’s the breakdown:
- We invited a total of 135 people to our wedding, including the bride and groom.
- Our maximum occupancy in the reception ballroom was 120, meaning I was praying to receive some “no’s”
- Of those that were invited, 53% fell into the Bride’s family or friends categories.
- After tallying up all the yes’s and no’s, 93 people will be attending our get together, with 42 people celebrating from afar.
- Out of the 93 who are attending, almost 60% of them fall into the “Bride’s side category”; a large majority of the guests on Mr. C’s list live out of state and just couldn’t make the trek.
The info about RSVP’s time of return is some of what I found most interesting. We had an almost frustrating number of people not send their card back on time. I may or may not have gotten anxious and started texting & Facebook messaging people just a few days after the deadline, but really people, when did etiquette completely go out the window? *rant over*
- Just over 100 people sent back their RSVP card or let me know they were coming before October 1st (our deadline). Okay, I guess that wasn’t that bad.
- Of the 30 or so who didn’t RSVP on time, 20 of them either responded to my message, or sent their card in just a little late—most were actually a combination of both a text and then a card in the mail a few days later.
- Eight people did not give me any response whatsoever as to whether or not they would be showing up. Not receiving an RSVP card wasn’t too terribly disheartening, but not responding to my friendly text or FB message was a little upsetting. But hey, I’m over it! And our catering headcount went down!
A few other notes:
- Only 15 people on our guest list (including us) are local to the DFW area, so it’s semi-destination (driving or flying two+ hours) for everyone else.
- Thirteen of the 15 locals invited will be celebrating with us at the wedding! Woo, DFW peeps!
- Of the 135, 12 are kids under age 18, and all but one of those are family (the other might as well be!). The majority of the kids are involved in the wedding somehow, and we didn’t invite children of other guests.
- Of the 93 attending, four that I counted are our wonderful videographers and photographers, who are included in the overall number because of the vendor meals we’ll be providing.
- And finally, out of all of those wonderful RSVP cards we received in the mail, THREE did not have names on them, and two forgot to check yes or no! I have since been in touch with those who forgot to mark their response, but for the no-name problem, I highly suggest numbering the back of your cards and having a document with a numbered list of guests! It saved me from a good bit of stress.
I’m so glad you are excited to attend our wedding, but… I have no idea who you are!
Did any of y’all have similar numbers to ours? Any late October brides who still haven’t heard from a guest or two…or three…or eight…?