Should We Have a Second Wedding Reception?


Planning one wedding is already a lot of work, but if you and your spouse-to-be live far away from one (or both) of your families or are having a more intimate destination wedding, you might be thinking about planning a second one closer to home. So, is it worth the hassle? Here's what our experts have to say about whether or not you should have reception number two.

Keeping the guest list small is a great way to keep your wedding-planning costs down (and is usually the way to go if you're traveling to a far-flung destination to celebrate), but it does mean that there might be family members or friends who never made it off the B List who you still want to celebrate. If they all live in the same area (say, close to your hometown), a second reception is a great way to include them all in your wedding — as well as more easily cut down the guest list for the main event.

See more: 11 Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Invite Someone to Your Wedding

If you choose to go for round two, there's no need to make it as intricate as your actual wedding day. A more low-key event, like a big dinner at a local restaurant or a cocktail reception at your favorite bar, is a great way to get everyone together. You might opt to wear your wedding dress again if you're hosting a more formal sit-down, or stick to the white theme and pick a shorter cocktail-style frock so you still stand out from the crowd but are a little more comfortable (and re-wear your wedding shoes, of course!).

When you're inviting guests to just the second reception, make sure your invitation wording is clear. Something like "Sarah and James invite you to a cocktail party in celebration of their marriage," or a more casual "Sarah and James are married! Please join us for a celebratory cocktail party," will let them know that the ceremony has already happened.

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