Wedding Guest List Tips

Deciding on your wedding guest list can be stressful, it was for us. So we’re going to share our top tips to navigate this potentially tricky subject.

Our Top 5 Tips for Managing Your Wedding Guest List

  1. Only invite people that you really want to be there – this is YOUR special day and you should share it with those you care about most. Let go of any guilt you feel for not inviting everyone you know. Each guest equates to a cost, so with fixed amount of money to spend you have to put a limit on the numbers.
  2. Decided early on whether you are going to invite children and plus-ones to the wedding as this can have a significant effect on your total. Try to make it clear on the invitation what the situation is. To invite all our most important friends and family to our wedding, within our total guest budget, meant we couldn’t include everyone’s children or plus-ones – people were understanding once we explained.
  3. Consider any special requirements your guests have. Ask for dietary requirements in the RSVP, allow extra space in your seating plan for guests with disabilities or babies, that kinda thing.
  4. Keep your total guest number in mind when you’re looking at wedding venues. It will be tough if you fall in love with somewhere that is way too big or small. Make sure your preferred venue has sufficient capacity for all your guests, you don’t want to be squeezed in.
  5. It will be much easier to manage if all your guest list information is in one place. As well as contact details include a checklist to keep track of whether you’ve sent invites, received an RSVP and received a gift so you can thank them afterwards.


With our fondness for a good spreadsheet, it will be no surprise that we suggest using one to manage your wedding guest list. Keep all the details in a single wedding guest list spreadsheet featuring details such as:

  • Name, address, phone and email
  • Save the Date checklist
  • Invite checklist
  • RSVP checklist
  • Dietary requirements?
  • Did they give you a gift?
  • Thank You card checklist

So once you’ve sent the invite for example, you can check it off so you know it’s been done. Group guests together in the list if they live at the same address, so that you remember to only send one invite!

One Mistake to Avoid

Don’t be tempted to send invites to more people than you can accommodate just because you think not everyone will accept. There is advice out there saying that 10% or more of the people you invite to your wedding won’t be able to make it. But inviting more people to your wedding is a risky business, what if they surprise you by all accepting? Suddenly you don’t have enough room and you will have a rising bill. A safer bet would be to wait until people RSVP saying they can’t make it and then promptly invite people from a backup list, that way you won’t end up with more guest than you want.

Want to Learn More About Managing Your Wedding Guest List?

We’re giving away a FREE starter guide and wedding guest list template to help you manage your guest list. It includes a filled in version of the wedding guest list spreadsheet from our own wedding, so you can see how we used it.

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Happy planning!
Hannah x

HannahWedding Guest List Tips

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