How Should My Fiancé and I Divide The Guest List?

How to split wedding invitations and guest list

Photo: Noa Griffel

Before you and your fiancé send out your save-the-date cards, you've got to sit down and figure out your guest list. How do you tackle such a nitty gritty task? Our wedding etiquette experts are here to answer your guest list questions in our daily post.

How can I divvy up the guest list?

Here are some guidelines for dealing with the guest list: If parents are paying for the wedding, they traditionally have dibs on a little more that half the wedding invitation-slots. It's also common for the guest list to be divided in thirds—one for the bride's parents, one for the groom's, and one for you and your guy. All relatives—even your favorite aunt—go on your parents' list. If you and your fiancé are paying for the wedding, the two of you get most of the invites. The groom's family sometimes chips in so that they can invite people who might not otherwise fit on the list. You and your groom are the ones to decide whether or not to invite children or Sally Smith and "Guest," meaning Sally and her date. When in doubt, don't leave anybody out. If you are asking yourself whether to include someone, send the invitation. A common regret later on is that someone was excluded. As for stepparents, ex's and any other guest who might feel uncomfortable in another's presence, arrange seating so that they can keep their distance, and, if asked, say you are doing so. It is up to your invitees to decide whether or not they will attend.

You Might Also Like:
See more wedding invitation and stationery ideas
Save-the-Date Cards for a Spring Wedding
Wedding Etiquette Tips for Brides: Guests and Family

Give a Subscription to Brides Magazine as a Gift

Get personalized planning advice, exclusive offers and must-read wedding news.

Thank You
for Signing Up!

Check your e-mail inbox for the latest updates from