Wedding Question: How Do We Tell Guests That There’s No Plus One?

It is about a month and half til our wedding. We are getting more and more rsvps in, which is great. However, we’ve noticed several of our single guests hav rsvp’d as bringing a date, when the invitation was clearly addressed to just them. What do you think is the best way to handle this situation? How do you keep your budget modest and not offend your guests?

Photo from The Wedding Lens

Photo from The Wedding Lens

The first thing you should know is that most people (especially single people) do not know the wedding etiquette for dates and that the envelope says who’s invited. I was invited to one of my first weddings in college and I didn’t know this at all. I responded that my best friend would be coming with me. In retrospect, I have NO idea what the invitation said; I’m sure I just assumed — as many people do.

Assuming that most people don’t know and have responded with a plus one, the best thing to do is talk to them. I know it can be awkward, but it will save you (and the guest) the embarrassment. The key is to explain the situation and explain why there are no dates permitted.

For example, “I just noticed that you responded that you’ll be bringing a guest with you. Unfortunately, we’re not able to let people bring guests unless we’ve specifically invited them. We’re just really tight on the budget and we really can’t afford to include more people. I hope you understand.”

There’s no easy fix and no easy way to let people know without a conversation (or a link to my blog post on invitations and bringing a date to the wedding!)

Hopefully they will understand and everything will be OK. They will eventually! Case in point: a group of friends and I attended a wedding a few years ago, one of whom complained the whole time about how we weren’t allowed to invite dates. Ahem. He got married this year and… um… he gets it now. No dates for his wedding either!

Good luck!

~ Natasha

Have a wedding question? Email me!


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