(Closed) How are you handling the plus ones on your guest list?

posted 7 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
881 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

@tiff-tiff-tiff:  we are doing plus ones for serious relationships only and for two guests who are travelling far and wont know anyone else there. The one I am sure if she can come will bring a friend not a date so it was more a means for her to have a buddy. Most of our guests not getting a plus one are cousins and such who are coming with their whole family anyway so its not like they wont have a ton of people to hang out with. 

Post # 4
7199 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2015

@tiff-tiff-tiff:  I’m doing +1s for exclusive/serious relationships. So my 16 year old cousin who’s been dating the same guy for 3 years & brings him to holidays? She gets a +1 (Really, I’ll be addressing an invitation to her & him). My 21 year old cousin who dates guys for no more than 1 month at a time before moving on to another one who looks remarkably the same? No plus one. 

And I hear you…. I have a 200+ guest list but only need like 90 invitations. Oh family weddings…..

Post # 5
5870 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2013

Since I had a destination wedding everyone had a plus one.

Post # 6
763 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: January 2014

We are only doing plus ones for people in serious relationships.

Post # 7
9950 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2012

Hi @tiff-tiff-tiff:  Working on the Guest List is hard… one of the most difficult parts of Wedding Planning.

From an Etiquette Stand Point there are two school of thought…

Those that say every Adult should get a Plus One.

And those that say, only “recognizable” social Units get a Plus One… so Marrieds – Living Together – Engaged Couples

Which you choose to follow is up to you and your budget

Traditional Etiquette tho, does say to allow for Members of your Bridal Party & Siblings who are over 18 to bring along a Date

As it is thought that one’s “Nearest & Dearest” do a lot to support you thru the whole Pre-Wedding & Wedding Process so they should be allowed to bring whomever they want to party with “the weekend” of your Wedding (be that their Spouse, Fiance, SO… a Date that they’ve arranged for the event… or even a Relative if that is who they wish to spend the downtime on the Weekend with).

Extending Plus Ones to one’s Nearest & Dearest is super considerate, and I truly believe to be the right thing to do.

And as someone else said… if it is a Destination Wedding, then EVERYONE Invited should be able to bring along someone to travel / share their time with as well.

As always tho, this Etiquette Snob… lol, says you can do whatever you wish… as long as you are aware of The Rule… and are willing to weigh the risk & consequences… ONLY YOU know your Guests / Social Circle

Hope this helps,

PS… Like your NEW WBee Avatar… I didn’t recognize you at first.


Post # 8
169 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

I pretty much planned a plus one for everyone. For two reasons really:


1.  Gives you a pretty good idea of the max number of guests


2.  Most people I will be inviting are already married (some may call me an older bride)


3.  I’ve been to plenty of weddings and though many of them were with family it’s nice to have a +1 to dance with and keep you from feeling like a 3rd wheel


Obviously if you need to cut down on your total, removing plus ones may be easier than deciding on guests to be cut. However, it may be tough and uncomfortable if you start saying no to some and yes to others.


Post # 9
73 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: July 2014

As I am trying to be extremely budget conscious (if that’s even possible) we are going the ttafitional route. Only married, nested, or seriously considering marriage guests get a +1. The only exception would be my FI’s coworkers because there are a group of them. I am only inviting two (you don’t get to come to my wedding because I simply know you, you have to have had an impact on my life) so i am extending the invite to their SO. 

At at the end of the day, (most) people will understand that weddings cost $$$. Your response can always be “the venue only holds X number of people”

and my “16yo cousin” definitely will not have a plus one. I think she would be two young for that sort of classification and has family to keep her company. 

Post # 10
5063 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2014

Our take on this is more the merrier, happy guests with happy +1’s will hopefully make for a happy wedding. 

Post # 11
1247 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2014

Plus ones only for people in exclusive relationships. I don’t even really consider that a plus one though because I would never even consider not inviting a friends SO. Only single person getting a plus one is a girl who will know no one else there and is travelling from interstate. Every other single person is friends with others attending and we generally don’t seem to give plus ones in that situation here/in my circle.

Post # 12
1589 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

We are only able to give plus ones to those in a relationship. (And immediate family). I wanted so badly to give them to everyone, but the guest list added up quickly.  We are at 173 now.

Post # 13
2120 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2014

Anyone who is in an official relationship at the point of sending out invitations ie. “boyfriend and girlfriend”, not just “seeing each other”, will get a plus one by NAME. So “Sarah and John” not “Sarah +1”. Those who are not in a relationship at the point of sending out invitations will not get a plus one, even if they then start a relationship before the wedding. 

Our thinking is, if you are together when we send out invitations a few months before, by the time of the wedding the relationship could be serious even if you had just started dating when invitations went out. 

On the other hand, if you have only been in a relationship for a couple of weeks before the wedding, you can probably cope without them for one day.

We will not be giving out any general “+1″s because we want to know exactly who we are inviting. 

We also aren’t inviting everyone’s children if the children are older teenagers / young adults we never see. Just their parents (these are my parents’ friends mainly). Our parents are totally fine with this and don’t think their friends will be offended. 

Post # 14
11736 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

@tiff-tiff-tiff:  we gave everyone a plus one.

Post # 15
13244 posts
Honey Beekeeper

As I have mentioned here before several times, I don’t know of any etiquette authority or source  that has  said now or ever that + 1s are proper for anything other than couples who are considered a social unit, ie married, engaged, or living together. That’s what we did at our wedding.  

 Miss Manners, who is a conservative voice,  and the Emily Post Institute, which is considered liberal by traditional  etiquette standards both agree, rare enough in and of itself, that +1s are not required other than in the examples  above.  That it is something you may choose to do, but it is not an obligation.  

I’d still really love to see a reputable source that says anything to the contrary.  Asking with curiosity, not with sarcasm.

Post # 16
1769 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

We’re giving everyone a plus one (well, not EVERYONE, but all single guests). I think it ends up being about 25 extra people (we’re in our late 20s and most of our friends are engaged, married, or have a long term SO. most of our plus ones are actually older relatives and coworkers who are divorced!). We’re not doing any children, at all. We were lucky in that we dont have any families that straddled the adult/kid line. Either the kids are in their 20s and older (so they get an invite) or theyre HS aged or younger (so no invite). FIs brother will be 20 and the youngest guest, my brother will be the second youngest at 24. We just said (for people who asked) that it’s 21 and up due to our reception venue (a microbrewery)

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