Post # 1
…So my fiancee and I are planning our wedding in Orlando, Florida. We currently reside in California, but I am from Orlando. So, we budgeted for 150-180 people. The thing is that he wants to invite > 200 people FROM HIS FAMILY ALONE! Crazy, I know!
He says that he “knows his family” and that they won’t travel all the way to Florida for the wedding. He just wants everyone to feel that they are being treated equally and doesn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings (he claims that “this is just how his family is…” my family is the same way, but hey – i have made sacrifices).
He’s even said that if he can’t invite ALL of his extended family, then he will just invite his immediate family and that’s that. (OMG, I know)
My invite list has been cut back and cut back b/c I know that my family will travel anywhere to see me get married… And I don’t want to overcommit ourselves by inviting more people than we can afford. He seems to think it’s fine for him to invite significantly more people than me (twice as many, maybe more?) because, in his eyes, they won’t be coming.
I still think it’s risky. I mean, what if they ALL decide to show up? The wedding is on a long holiday weekend…
ANYONE HAVE AN EXPERIENCE LIKE THIS? HOW’S IT GOING/HOW DID IT WORK OUT/WHAT DID YOU DO?
We argue about this intensely every single time we talk about it. And I can’t stand to go through that anymore.
Post # 3
Ask him what his plan is if his guests do show up. How does he plan to pay for them? If they all show, will you have the atmosphere you’re hoping for? Insist that you want him to have a plan for if they all (or significantly more than he’s expecting) end up RSVPing yes. Explain to him your worry is not so much about inviting them, but that you just really don’t think this is a smart, safe plan, and that you’re hurt that he seems to say “my way or the highway” regarding the guest list. The other thing is that you’ll then have to at least entertain any ‘solution’ that he comes up with for if they do show up.
Post # 4
yea… so he said he’s so sure they won’t show up that he would pay out of his own pocket for them… where all that cash would come from, i’m not quite sure… we are already paying for 1/3 of the wedding ourselves…
it’s very surprising to me that he has given me a “my way or the highway” response… it’s so NOT like him. on the one hand, that makes me see that this is something that is really important to him… on the other hand… it’s just a mess…
Post # 5
Tell him that you need to budget as though evrey single person on your list would show up… because that very well could happen.
Post # 6
I know its probably not proper, but we designed a “B” list. After the first round of RSVPs come in (most of the invites are going out to people we “have” to invite, but don’t want to), we will send out a second batch so that we can fill up our spots with close friends, etc. It’s kind of the opposite of your problem, but this way you could ensure that you don’t go over your numbers?
Post # 7
@lagemmapreziosa: If he’s willing to pay out of pocket for them all, then I would ask him to explain how he’s going to come up with that much cash. He doesn’t sound very realistic to me.
Post # 8
@bearlove: “Insist that you want him to have a plan for if they all (or significantly more than he’s expecting) end up RSVPing yes.”
I agree with this 100%! I know he thinks he knows his family, but he very well may be surprised. When we were putting together our guest list, we kept track of people we felt were likely/not likely to come… and some of the “not likely”s have already told us how much they’re looking forward to being there! People love you and want to celebrate with you–I’m pretty sure he will get way more yes’s than he anticipates. I totally sympathize with him not wanting to cause any hurt feelings by excluding people, but it sounds like he’s really running the risk of putting you guys in a strained financial situation. (Not to mention, how many people does your venue actually hold?)
Post # 9
Future Mother-In-Law did the same thing… “Invite the Chicago family, they’ll never come”. We told her to keep her mouth shut til we made a final decision, but she gave verbal invites anyway, and guess what- they’ve all already bought plane tickets (all 20 of them!). Every last person she spoke to bought a freakin’ ticket. Our invites won’t go out for SIX MONTHS. We are still livid with her for that one.
If your total cap is 180, inviting 200 of his family alone is not only reckless, it’s stupid. What if even half of them say yes? You’re screwed. People get in moods- if it’s been a while since the last family wedding, they all might decide to use your wedding for a family reunion of sorts, then you’re going to be scrambling and losing money on a bigger hall three weeks before your wedding (if you’re even able to). It’s bad news bears all around.
If you’ve booked your venue already, invite the absolute top number it’ll hold and/or you can afford, whichever is less. If you’re going to go over, go over by maybe 5 people, not 200.
I don’t know how to convince him they might come, but you might just need to put your foot down. There is pretty much no way inviting twice your cap is going to end well.
Post # 10
- Wedding: July 2012 - Baltimore Museum of Industry
I copied this from Peggy Post’s Wedding Etiquette– (FMIL wants to invite 20 family members who “won’t attend but “need” an invite”…HER aunts, whom my Fiance doesn’t even know):
“Sending invitations to out-of-town guests who can’t possibly attend:
In most cases, invitations are not sent to those friends and acquantances who cannot possibly attend the celebration. Since an invitation to a wedding carries an obligation to send a gift, inviting someone who can’t possibly attend makes it look as if you are inviting those friends in order to receive a gift. Also, people with whom your only communication for the past several years has been holiday cards are generally not included on the invitation list either.. Any of the above could receive a wedding annoucement instead, which carries no gift obligation whatsoever.”
Post # 11
- Wedding: July 2012 - Baltimore Museum of Industry
I just thought of something else- Long holiday weekend equals family trip to Disney! If you invite extended family, there’s a really good chance they’d come, since they have an extra time off work, and it can be a vacation.
Post # 12
You’re right, you need to prepare for 100% attendance (rare, but it happens!). Can you cut off the line at grandparents, aunts & uncles, first cousins & spouses and ONLY invite people he is close to other than that? 200 from his side alone when you have budgeted for about 150 people is way too many!
Post # 13
UGH! I am soo sorry that you had to go through all this! I had a similar expirience except it was with my FIL! Our max list was going to be 200. And with family friends and our friends it was like…100. Then his parents had a guest list of about 150!! ALL FAMILY. Which left no room for any of my family. I had a talk with my Fiance, told him the list was crazy unbalenced and told him to cut anyone who we weren’t going to miss at the wedding. For his distant family members we’re sending announcements, and we cut most of the kids ad plus ones, which drastically reduced the list. 🙂 Good luck!
Post # 14
I know this thread is a bit dated but DO NOT invite people that you cannot afford to pay for. Weddings are once in a lifetime event, and his family is close many people will make the unexpected effort to go to the wedding JUST because they have been invited. I come from a large family and trust me it has happened. Do not do it to yourself!
Post # 15
lagemmapreziosa this is my math:
long holiday weekend + wedding + florida = at least 80% of his family will showup in your wedding
Post # 16
I generally don’t like the idea of a “B list” but maybe it could be part of your solution here? We are not inviting anyone that we don’t want to RSVP yes. Our space is just too limited and we have no back up plan!