(Closed) Destination Wedding Etiquette

posted 6 years ago in Destination Weddings
Post # 3
13290 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

@chumpette84:  I think you need to draw a clear line and stick with it: immediate family (parents, siblings) and X number of close friends invited.  When someone questions it, you say you had to have a strict capacity and unfortunately, could not invite everyone you’d love to have. 

I assume your reception is back at home after the wedding?  If it is, you just have to invite them to celebrate your recent nuptials.  There is no need to point out that they weren’t invite to the actual wedding ceremony.

Post # 5
9952 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2012

@chumpette84: Lol, I am a bit of an Etiquette Snob (due to my career) so lets see if I (and Peggy Post) can’t give you a hand.

First and foremost, I agree with what abbie017:  had to say… things all around will go easier if you make very precise cuts (lines drawn) for your Destination Wedding Guest List.

Maybe, JUST immediate family members… so your Moms & Dads, Siblings… any of their immediate family (Spouces, Kids) and the chosen members of your Bridal Party (we assume for the Bride, they’d be GFs) and their immediate family members (Spouces, Kids)

For these folks, you’d be sending out Printed Invites in the usual format… something along the lines of

Please join us as we celebrate our love and marry in   (location)   etc

Of course the above example assumes that the event is hosted by you the Bride & Groom and a very casual affair (Beach Wedding)

(I can give you the exact wording for any particular situation if you need it… be it you and your Groom being the Hosts, or your Parents, or both sets of Parents etc… just let me know the particulars… if you want you to keep your info private you can send me a PM)

And for the folks who will be joining you for your Back Home Reception… then the Invites can be as formal or casual as you like.

Formal is usually the format, if the couple intends to hold a Vow Renewal, wear their Wedding Attire, etc.

Example… (as per Peggy Post, and her book “Wedding Etiquette”)

Mr. and Mrs. Douglas Charles Campbell

request the pleasure of your company

at the wedding reception for their daughter

Deirdre Mary


Mr. Jeffrey Keller

Saturday, the twenty-fourth of June

two thousand and one

at seven o’clock

Horseshoe Harbour Yacht Club

Larchmont, New York




NOTE  – that the format, wording & capitalization is as per the book

(So in a formal situation, the wording would more closely align with that which is commonly seen for a Wedding… again I can provide exact examples, if you provide specfics if you need more help)

IF it is a Casual Back Home Reception… then depending on WHO the hosts are it could go something along the lines of…


Mr. and Mrs. Wayne Matteis

request the pleasure of your company

at a reception

in honor of

Mr. and Mrs. Scott Nelson


OR if it truly casual… House Party, Backyard BBQ, etc… and hosted by the Bride & Groom themselves

If keeping their own names…

Mary Ann Schmidt and George James MacLellan

invite you to share with them

as they celebrate their recent marriage

with a reception on

Saturday, the tenth of September

two thousand

at half after three o’clock

Belle Haven Club

Greenwich, Connecticut


OR even even more casually like Mr TTR and I did…

Jack & Jill Forever

are eloping and getting married !!

Celebrate with us upon our return…

etc. (usual format for Date, Time, Location, and RSVP)

In our case, we mailed out our Back Home Reception Invites while we were on our Wedding Trip / Honeymoon… and the actual party didn’t happen until we were home for a few weeks (THANK Goodness for that, because I really needed the extra time to get stuff organized).

Also, the more casual the party, then the less particular you can be about formalities… so in our case our Guests sent their RSVPs to our Website Email (vs a formal RSVP Reply Card mailed to us).  This also meant, that we could watch the RSVPs come in while we were on our trip… and had a pretty accurate count, by the time be got back home, which made the final planning stage a tad easier (got to hit the ground running)

Hope this helps,

Like I said, if you need more specific info help with this, you can drop me a PM.


Post # 6
3424 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

@chumpette84:  I agree with @abbie017:  just put on the invites you request their company to celebrate your recent nuptials

Post # 7
2743 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2014 - Disney

We are doing 3 separate events. The wedding will be in Feb 14 all family and a few friends (20 or so) will be invited we anticipate 35-50 guests. We will do Save-The-Date Cards and formal invitations for these 60.

Those that are not invited of our friends, or do not come, and those that are invited and want to come will also be invited in early april to a barbeque at our house. We will have the photos from our wedding and honeymoon on our tv as a slide show, and if we do video we will show that as well. We will do these ivites via phone, and facebook.

The 3rd party will be a formal dinner in my fiance’s home town. This will probably be in July since we typically go up then. We are doing this for his family that can not make it since many are strapped for cash and/or dont like to travel. This will be done word of mouth since they are very casual. We will serve cake at his grandma’s house probably too over the weekend we are there and bring the photos/video to share.

Note that though we will pay for the BBQ and the dinner we are not wording them as recceptions. We do not expect gifts these will be very informal affairs. They will be “since you missed our big day come visit with us now that we’re married” type event. We are having a formal reception after our wedding, along with several other parties that weekend.

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