Guest Lists- A lists and B lists

posted 3 years ago in Logistics
  • poll: What % of your OOT guests attended your wedding?
    100% : (4 votes)
    20 %
    90% : (4 votes)
    20 %
    80% : (2 votes)
    10 %
    70% : (0 votes)
    60% : (1 votes)
    5 %
    50% : (3 votes)
    15 %
    40% : (2 votes)
    10 %
    30% : (2 votes)
    10 %
    20% : (1 votes)
    5 %
  • Post # 3
    Member
    2565 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: October 2014

    You can put the word out and see who will be able to make it. We already know a few people who will absolutely not be able to make the trip for our wedding.

    Many people consider B lists to be very rude, so I hope what I am doing is going to be ok. We are sending save the dates to our closest family and friends, and if they let us know they won’t be able to come when it is time to send invitations we will send invites to more people. That way everyone who is invited receives their invitation at the same time. Do not count on a certain percentage to decline, because it can get you in a lot of trouble if more people come than you expected.

    Post # 4
    Member
    1871 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: June 2012

    I wouldnt do A or B lists. I think some people find out (my friend was sent a B list invite, she wasnt sent a STD and they just asked for her address after I sent in my rsvp) and it could hurt their feelings.

    Do you have any idea who may sit out? My family is all in Houston and we live in Dallas (about 4-5 hour drive) and my husbands family lives all over Illinois (12-16 hour drive) so we had about 50% of our invitees from out of town. Most of his family did not come but he has a HUGE family and it was expected that they wouldnt be able to attend. We sent them invites anyway and of course they responded that they couldnt go.

     We also had a shower in Houston and Illinois just so we could celebrate with those that could not travel. I think it made it easier for them to not come… Overall we invited about 300 and had 180 rsvp yes and 168 attend (grrr haha)

     

    Post # 5
    Member
    1036 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: August 2013

    @HeartsandSparkles:  I would be more worried about meeting your minimum than having too much, especially if your sister is getting married 6 months before you. I would send out all the STD as early as possible to get people to come, unless there are some people you really dont care about. I am only having about 25 people (including plus ones and kids) and probably invited about 80 plus for OOT guests. So i really only have 5 or 6 friends coming and then 5 pairs of aunts & uncles, grandmother and and kids.

    However, Ireland is a flight for everyone and pretty expensive. I also gave them a year and a half to plan. 

     

    Post # 8
    Member
    5932 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: April 2018

    @HeartsandSparkles:  The more guests you invite, the more complicated it gets….I would focus more on inviting the people you really want to share the day with instead of shooting 100-125 butts in the seats.

    I’ve seen the A List and B List invitation method fail abominably time and time again, because you can run into late A List RSVP’ers and you certainly can’t tell them that you voided their spot and invited a B Lister…not to mention if word gets out about who didn’t make the first cut your friend and family members will be terribly hurt, the costs can spin out of your budget very quickly and because there’s no such thing as a invitation expiration date, you could end up hosting double your budgeted list and having to pay an astronomical sum of money which you may or may not have, not to mention the added stress such a terrible set of circumstances might create. 

    Post # 10
    Hostess
    9903 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: May 2014

    @HeartsandSparkles:  I have about 75% out of province and probably about 85% out of town.  I have no idea how many will show up.  I have a B list, so does FH – some of his extended family, some of my friends from school.  I know it’s ‘wrong’ but it is what it is.  We’ll see what happens.

    Post # 11
    Member
    9529 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: August 2013

    As a bride who is 3 weeks after her RSVP deadline and still tracking down 33 people, I cannot imagine trying to do an A and a B list. regardless of the etiquette factor, just the logicstics are a nightmare! I would invite the number of people you can afford, if you do everything the cheapest way possible (cheaper food, drink, flowers, etc.). Because there are plenty of brides out there that got a 100% acceptance rate. It’s not typical, but it happens. Then, depending on how many people actually come, you can get nicer versions of everything.  Or just be happy to save some more money!

     

    Post # 12
    Member
    11668 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper
    • Wedding: November 1999

    There is nothing wrong with doing A and B lists if you plan it well in advance.  Obviously, you don’t send STDs to B listers.  You need to send out your A list invites earlier then normal and have their RSVPs back in time to be able to send out your B list invites.  B list RSVP cards need to have a separate date on them so people don’t get the RSVP card after the RSVP date.

    I’m not sure what % of out of town guests RSVP’d no. We had about 75% attendance though. I’d say about 50% of our invited guests were out of town.  

    Post # 13
    Member
    3249 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: August 2013

    @HeartsandSparkles:  We did an A list and a B list.  The B list was all in town.  The A list was relatives and close friends.  The B-list was important business acquaintences, and people on the acquaintence/friend border.  People will figure it out, and, since we were physically limited for space, we really had no choice because the out of town list was so unpredictable.

    People will probably find out they got their invitations later, but if they can clearly see how their relationship to you is different than the other people’s, then I don’t think they’ll be offended.  I’m hoping not, anyway!

    Post # 14
    Member
    1036 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: August 2013

    @HeartsandSparkles:  Hehe thanks! I am pretty excited. 🙂

    Glad to help! As a side note we also sent out “announcements” a year and a half. It was basically, “Hey, we’re engaged and getting married this month this year. We explained why we chose the location and said that we love to hear back from people if this is even a possibility for you. We understand your mind may change between now and the wedding, but for some people the finances would just never be in reach versus other of you it might be more possible” Not in those words, but it was a way of letting people save and plan if they wanted, but not holding them to an actual rsvp, all whille letting us get an idea of a total number.  

    Post # 15
    Member
    1793 posts
    Buzzing bee

    @Nona99:  +1

    Please don’t get into the A and B lists.  Listen to what Nona said on that.

    Here is a different perspective – looks like your sister is getting married in late Fall?  What are the chances weather will play into people being able to attend?  You are getting married in the Spring and if I were an out of town relative traveling to a wedding I would most likely choose yours if I thought the weather would be nicer

    When there are a lot of OOT relatives it can be a crap shoot.  A bunch won’t come OR they will see your wedding as a chance to see the rest of the family on your dime and decide to attend.

    I know a bride whose MIL PROMISED  the OOT relatives wouldn’t come.  PROMISED.  They just needed the courtesy of an invitation for the sake of good manners.  Well, guess what?  The most elderly 84 yo Aunt decided to make the flight across the country because she figured it would be the last time she could see everyone.  Well, when all those obligatory invitees heard Great Great Aunt Mable was making the flight, they did too!  Bride was LIVID with her FMIL.

    I think Nona’s advice is spot on here and really encourage you to consider it.

    Post # 16
    Member
    10988 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper
    • Wedding: May 2009

    I’m posting from my phone, so I cannot post the link, but even Miss Manners herself, Judith Martin, says that having a “B” list is not rude. However, letting someone know he or she is on it would be.

    I had an A-list (family and closest friends ) and a B-list (many other friends whom I really wanted to invite but couldn’t until I knew how many OOT relatives couldn’t attend.) I did not send any STDs, and I had a semi-destination wedding on a holiday weekend. However, I sent my invitations eight to nine weeks in advance of my RSVP date, which was 12-13 weeks from my wedding date. As soon as I learned that some OOT family and others had to decline, I immediately began mailing invitations to the next guests.

    In all honesty, you may even have entire categories of people in your life who wouldn’t expect that you could invite them but who would be thrilled to receive an invitation to your wedding, even if it is very late notice. Just be sure that you keep people from the same social circle in the same mailing schedule. If you have three friends from work with whom you frequently socialize, you don’t want to invite two in the A-list mailing and have them talking about your invitation in front of the third.

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