My Future In-Laws are Nigerian, they have lived in the US for over 40 years. His mom almost never goes back and his dad goes back almost once a month and does some business there on the side of his main job here.
@lanalnoco: I might too, it ain’t over yet . . . I’m just trying to do my best to think through all the potential snags and plan as much in advance, so I can avoid future stress over this issue (of invites, rsvps, & attendance being so up in the air for FIL’s guests).
@beachbride1216: our venue coordinator said she’s dealt with this type of situation before and it’s not an issue for them at all. our planner is also used to this type of situation, but we can’t reallly sign contracts w/any vendors, including the planner, until we have the contract with our venue (because the date’s not set until then), so I probably need to figure out this one part w/o her help. From what I’ve seen, this group often has 130% attendance rates as compared to invites. I don’t know how the “destination” aspect will impact this. For my side and FI’s friends, I’d expect the typical 70-85% attendance (so that’d be 98-120 ppl). And for FIL’s guests, 130% of 50 would be 65 attending. So I guess 163-185 attending total.
@Rock Hugger: yes, it’s semi-destination for everybody (including me and FI). we all have either a short plane flight or flight across the country & some of his parents’ guests would have international flights (a large # of those ppl have never been to the US, so it may be unlikely that they come, but FI’s dad is the oldest of a bunch of siblings, so that might “require” more family coming). I guess I need to look more at what domestic Destination Wedding attendance rates usually are to at least better estimate my side and FI’s friends (it’s a cool place that most of my family & both of our friends are excited about & would vacation to on their own).
I don’t have expectations of knowing which of FIL’s guests are coming- I’m just letting go of that. as an example- His dad told all the siblings he was flying internationally to attend another sibling’s kid’s wedding & none of his siblings found out he wasn’t there/coming until the day of the wedding. On our website, I can ask guests which hotel they’re stayiing at, when they arrive in town, & maybe what airline or if they’ve bought plane tix yet? (but I don’t know if the responses to that will be accurate for these guests b/c it wouldn’t have been for my FFIL).
Our venue does have a larger capacity than we’re telling Future In-Laws, it’s over 200 but not by a whole lot. We’re already compromising to go to this venue (we love it but our first choice was smaller) and there is no other larger venue that Fiance and I will consider (we don’t want to compromise away our wedding, so there are certain things we won’t be flexible on).
@lia22: Funny you ask b/c I’ve been getting a lot of tips and advice from my Indian girlfriends- there are definite similarities in the wedding culture. If we invite 150 (50 being FIL’s), the venue will be able to hold over 40% more than 150 ppl, so I think we’ll be okay. (Oh & only FIL’s 50 or so guests will over-attend. even if twice as many come, that’s 100 & we’d still be able to fit our venue with right around 200 ppl total). If we start thinking there will be a decent # over 200, we might need to take serious measures- like telling ppl (not sure how you get word to crashers who didn’t even get invites . . .) that it is strictly invite only & there will be someone enforcing that at the door? FILs tend not to like that though b/c they’ve told me in their culture that you’re just supposed to be so honored that so many ppl want to come celebrate with you.
For your food question- about 10 days before the wedding, we’ll need to give them a headcount for catering purposes and you best believe I’ll be back back on the bee w/a poll long before then giving our invite & rsvp details, re-describing the issue, & asking for ideas on what # I should give for that final headcount (b/c we’ll have to pay for that # so don’t want to overestimate, and extra ppl over that # will cost more, so don’t want to underestimate).