How to Create a Wedding Guest List

A wedding celebration is just that, a celebration! One that you will want to share with your family and friends! Although it would be nice to not have to limit the number of guests, the truth is that due to your wedding budget, you are only going to able to invite a certain number of wedding guests. In this episode, we are talking with Beth McIntyre of Your Favorite Day about how to create a wedding guest list.

Beth is the owner and lead planner of Your Favorite Day, a wedding planning company based in Central Florida. She specializes in Month of Planning and is passionate about empowering couples to plan their wedding and recognize their unique vision. 

How to Create a Wedding Guest List

When you create your wedding guest list keep in mind that it doesn’t mean you have to have a small list. Just be mindful that more wedding guests will mean more expense.

Also, a guest list is something that will take time to sort through. You definitely shouldn’t expect to get it done in one sitting. However, it is important that you have a preliminary idea of who you’d like to invite prior to doing your wedding venue search. Since all venues have a maximum capacity, you don’t want to fall in love with a venue only to find out it’s not big enough to hold all your “must-have” wedding guests.

Day of Coordination: Patina and Petals Design | Photographer: Lillie Shawn Imagery

Deciding Who To Invite

When creating a wedding guest list, start with the biggest version. Think of all the friends, family, and co-worker you and you future spouse would like to invite. After writing these down, start creating filters. Below are examples of filters:

Not Controversial –

  • No kids
  • No plus ones – for unmarried or uncoupled

Might Be Controversial –

  • No spouses for work friends
  • No one you haven’t spoken or texted within a year, 6 months, etc.

Other Factors

As mentioned above, keep different versions of your guest list in mind when you venue shop. It is possible that your dream wedding venue will dictate your guest list.

Another thing to look into prior to finalizing your guest list is the food and beverage cost. If your preferred venue doesn’t have onsite catering, get menus from preferred caterers to get an idea of the cost per wedding guest.

Photo: Sydney Marie Photography

Working with Your Wedding Guest List

Once you have your final guest list decided, keep it in a “smart place”. Buy a spreadsheet template or input it into an online wedding planning platform. This will make it easy to track RSVPs, document meal preferences and allergies, and create your seating chart.

Be patient with each other as you create your guest list. It can be tricky as family/friend dramas may come up. Just remember that you are responsible for your wedding guest’s experience once they become your guest.

Preferred Wedding Pros

Below are our preferred local wedding professionals that have been vetted and provide amazing service to couples.