How to Plan for +1 Wedding Guests

Wedding guests toasting champagne to the bride and groom

Prices for weddings have been skyrocketing and will probably increase as time goes by. Weddings take months of preparation, and getting all the reservations together for a final list is very difficult. Getting people to RSVP by the given date can be a hassle especially when the non-RSVPs bring a date to the wedding!

Preparing for The Worst

It takes a long time for weddings to develop. Getting the guests to RSVP in time is one the biggest concerns. In order to prepare the invitations, the bride or groom have to decide on a way to allow their guests a plus one. If you had all the money in the world, you would let every single guest bring a plus one, but you are probably on a budget with limited amount of space. The easiest way to cutting down wedding costs is to put a limitation on wedding invites.

To prepare for the worst, you want to have at least a few extra spaces available for guests that will most likely bring a plus one even though they were told not to do so. Expecting a little more people than the initial number you suggested is a good idea to keep in the back of your mind. Staying on track with each and every single guest and writing out personal invitations to them is a good strategy to start off with.

Couple embracing against a black background


Before making an executive decision on the plus ones, you must keep a few things in mind. What is the couple’s relationship status? Are they married, divorced, engaged, or just dating? All these factors have to be taken into consideration before officially sending out any invitations. If a couple is married, then you must assume they will be bringing their spouse. Instead of making a rule that will apply to all the guests, go ahead and make individual rules based on every single guest. Starting off your strategy on a case by case basis will make things easier.

Weigh out all the different relationships that your close cousins, friends, and other family members have. Think about whether the guest started dating before or after the invites were already sent out and start deciding from there. People from high school for example, with a boyfriend or girlfriend of two weeks, should not be given priority.

Couple writing in a notebook together

The Final Decision

After a long debacle of deciding which guests can bring plus one, your invitations are ready to be sent out. Unfortunately, anybody trying to attend the wedding after RSVPs have already been made can cause a huge problem and should not be allowed or accepted. For people that have been together longer than nine months or are already married, receiving a plus one shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. On the invitations make sure you write specifically who the invitation is for and if they can bring a date. Keeping track of families and how many people each guest can bring can help form a better idea of how many guests will be attending your wedding. Making an exception to the rules will become more difficult as the date of the wedding approaches.

The dreaded plus one questions shape and build the invitation list. Carefully analyzing who will be able to have a plus one will help maintain track of your budget. As the bride and groom, you have the final decision on adding plus ones or not. In most cases, some venues only offer a capacity of people which means you are limited to the amount of space. Remember, only send out plus one options to all the married couples and people that have been dating for over nine months, it will help lower the demands of plus ones!

Find Amazing Vendors