Q: We have over 200 wedding guests we WANT to invite, but we’re only going to be able to have 150 max. Should I send Save the Dates to all 200 people knowing they won’t all come? Or should I have a B-list instead? – Lisa
A: Wedding guests can be so unpredictable. The people you thought were 100% going to come can drop out at the last minute, and the relative from halfway around the world that you invited just to be nice might unexpectedly RSVP with a big fat ‘Yes!’ In fact, when it comes to wedding guests I always tell brides to go into it thinking EVERYBODY you mail an invite to is going to show up (Read more about ‘How Many Wedding Guests You Can Expect‘ here). Which is why you should never, ever, ever send a wedding invitation or Save the Date to somebody you think won’t come. Because 9 times out of 10 you’re going to paint yourself into a corner that will be super hard (and expensive) to get out of, especially if you’re working with a tight budget and an extra 10, 20, or 30 guests will push you over the edge.
That’s where a trusty B-list comes in. A B-list is just that, a list with guests you would love to invite but as of now do not have the room to accommodate. It might sound like a bad thing to have, but I can assure you it will be your best friend if you use it properly. Here’s how to optimize your B-list so things go smoothly:
- Send out your Save the Dates at least 3-4 months before your wedding (and 8 months if you are having a destination wedding). The sooner the better. At the same time create your B-list of guests you would like to invite if given the chance.
- Chances are you will start hearing from guests who have received the Save the Dates, and some of them might be regrets. As soon as you hear a “I can’t come,” choose somebody from the top of your B-list to send a Save the Date to (or wedding invitation if it’s closer to your wedding date).
- Sit back knowing you will NOT go over your wedding guest count (or budget).
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