Post # 1
If we had all the $ or venue capacity in the world, we’d be fine with guests’ kids attending the wedding. As it is, both are limited. For our venue, basically, a limited # of kids under 5 yrs old get free kids’ meals, kids 5-10 yrs old get kids’ meal (half price of adult meal), and anybody older is charged at adult meal price.
Our friends’ kids will only be 4 yrs old or younger- so they’re not a problem (& we’re close to these friends & see these kids semi-regularly). FI’s niece will be around 5/6 and will be our flower girl. My goddaughter will be 13 or 14 and I want her there- she looks like an adult – I can give her a role as usher or an attendant if that’d justify her being there when others aren’t (she’d probably love that). Only family members’ kids pose an issue- a # of family members who we aren’t close with have kids aged 7 or so to 20 who we don’t barely know (some kids are technically half-cousins, some are 2nd cousins maybe).
We’re trying to figure out how to include wording on website/invites that nudges family members into not bringing their kids who are over 5/6 yrs old, but to let ppl know that kids under 5 are okay. Is there a way to do this or is it all or none? What about- “Wedding events are adults only, with the exception of children under 5 years old.”?
If the few family members w/kids who aren’t invited could not attend or decided not to attend b/c of this, that’d be fine by us- we aren’t close.
Post # 3
This is tough….I’m interested to see what other posters come up with! I think you can’t go wrong by putting all names on the envelopes and making the rsvp cards very clear (x of 3 attending). Etiquette wise, though, it’s tough to justify inviting some kids and not others.
Post # 4
With your situation, I think it’s going to come off very very rude. It either needs to be all the kids, or no kids.
You basically aren’t wanting kids strictly because of budget concerns.. which is fine.. but it’s not okay to have under 5’s there – even if its free.
Post # 5
Also.. what about someone who has a 10 year old and a 3 year old? Only bringing 1 child certainly isn’t okay!
Post # 6
@Shkragoldfish: I think if you were to do 10 and older it would be find but it’s rude to say that kids under 5 and kids over 18 can come. Can you limit it some other way? For example, (I may get some negative feedback on this) we did not invite second cousins. It did not matter how old they are they just did not get invited. If you do plan to move forward with this, I would suggest somehow including all of the kids that you do want to be there in the wedding.
Post # 7
I don’t think you should say ‘adults only’ and have exceptions. If I was someone who had made alternative arrangements for my children and when I got to your wedding there were kids running around I’d be a bit annoyed.
State who you are inviting on the invitation, including any children. I think that is the best way forward. Otherwise do it by word of mouth/people who ask.
Post # 8
besides kids not in the wedding, most friends have said that they really want to leave their babies/toddlers with family members so they can come just as a couple. It seems harsh to me to tell someone their breastfeeding baby can’t come. But I guess you can’t say “Adults only” and then let the few with babies know that they are free to bring them if they’d like?
it’s not primarily a $ issue, it’s very much also that we have to limit invites to ppl we’re close to and the older kids (10 & up) would be taking the spot of someone who is closer to us who we decided we need to cut for venue capacity reasons etc. We’re also not sure at all how many of FI’s parents’ guests will have kids they’re trying to bring.
Of the 100 guests we know of (so excluding FILs’ guests) and not including kids in the wedding party, 7 couples will have babies (or at least kids under 2) at that time, 3 couples will have kids aged 4-10 (one is of the group that also has babies), and one couple has kids 15-19 yrs old.
Hmm, now that I’m adding them up (I might’ve missed a few, but it doesn’t seem like there are all that many), so I’m wondering if we should just let it go & only deal with this by invite addressees or maybe even just invite all the kids (there are about 14 total). For a 150 person wedding, expanding to 164 to invite 14 kids doesn’t seem out of the question (only 2 are even full-price). Even tho most friends have said they don’t want to bring their kids, I’m kind of a baby-whisperer & I love little ones to pieces, maybe we just roll the dice & see what we get?
Post # 9
I’ve always been a fan of the cute kids dancing at weddings. I just hit a mental block when I was trying to keep our invites to 150 total & the kids kept making me exceed that #. I should probably just have a separate column for the kids under 10 because, while they do impact capacity, they just don’t impact budget in the same way as 15-20 additional adults would (especially when at least 8-10 of them wouldn’t even get their own food).
@jenilynevette: I get your point. Strangely almost nobody has kids in different age groups. Only one couple will have kids right around 10 and one baby (under 8 mos)- so I figured that cpl might want/need to bring the breastfeeding baby. But I wouldn’t want to split up other families accidentally, so I guess my initial idea won’t work.
@MrsBeck: The second cousin idea is smart
@clairebear000: I think you’re right. & really, I’m a softie- if I don’t list my 4 second/half cousins on invites & their parents ask/say they want to bring them, I’d say yes, no problem, of course.