Guest List

So much excitement about your pending nuptials and you both want a grand affair. Your family & friends all expect to attend and you want the very best, as you should. Do you know the cost for 300 guests at your wedding? NO. Well, let me be the first to tell you that it will cost more than $30k, depending on the venue & the food you want to serve. Three hundred people = space for 300 chairs/30 tables + 30 tables decor + 300 place settings + food for 300 + drinks for 300, then add tips for wait staff, music etc..etc.

Food & Music is very important and If you have bad food and terrible music it will be a bust. What about cocktails? Are you planning to have an open-bar? Then, add more $$ to that already expanding budget. This is the reason, a strict guest list has so much importance in wedding planning. Yes. . your wedding gown is of great importance, and you will find that it is much easier to shop for your dress, once you have your finances in order.

Now, on to selecting the people (Guests) who you choose to share in your joy on that wedding day. Note: "Share in your Joy". . . Do not invite those who are only there to mix and mingle, or those you think will write you a big check. Your guests must be Happy to see you get married and want to share in your JOY. That being said here are some guidelines:

1.  Create Tiers: Once you have written out a draft of your complete list, place each guest into a relationship category. The first tier consists of essential family members (grandparents, siblings, uncles, first cousins) and so on.
2.  Next Percentages: Assign 50 percent of that number to the bride and groom and 25 percent to each set of parents (or, with multiple sets of parents, 25 percent to each side altogether).
3.  Give Parents Their Number Early: To save embarrassment later, give them specific guidelines as soon as possible―before they start making phone calls inviting friends and family.
4.  Do the One-Year Test: If you’re not sure whether to invite someone, “Ask yourself, ‘Have I seen or spoken to this person in the last year?” says David Tutera, celebrity event planner. “If the answer is NO, odds are that you can keep them off your must-have list.”

When all else fails. . ask yourself – who are the people, who have always been & will always be part of our lives?  THEY. . are the perfect guests for your wedding.

Now, that you have established the guidelines and created a realistic Guest List. It's time to trim the budget. In my experience, every single budget needs a good trim because we use approximate costs and then realization happens. Once you have all the costs under control, you can shop for the Venue & Caterers. Yay! . . You are on your way to a Grand Joyous Wedding. CONGRATS.

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