(Closed) Plus Ones

posted 6 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
632 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

The rule typically is that everyone who is in a relationship, be it dating or married, one month or 10 years, they get a plus one.

Truly single guests don’t have to get a plus one, although it’s nice to give people a plus one it often times isn’t a reality.


Post # 4
1849 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

I know there’s official etiquette that says every adult guest gets one, but sometimes you have to be more pragmatic when you start looking at costs. I’m giving +1 to all guests who’re involved in a romantic relationship (dating to marriage and anything in between). I won’t have any attendees who’re both single and won’t know many people, and attendees who’re single won’t be getting a +1 because I don’t intend to pay for their platonic friend who had nothing else to do that night to eat filet mignon and drink from an open bar. I’d like to think my friends will understand. 

Post # 5
4893 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

Married, engaged, and cohabitating or long-term couples should get plus ones for their SO (and you can address it as such). As far as I know, you aren’t obligated to give them to anyone else. Their SOs may not necessarily show up, but you should extend an invite to them. 

Post # 6
1699 posts
Bumble bee

Truly formal etiquette often says something quite different from what various people tell you. By the standard of traditional proper manners, nobody gets a plus one. The only guests are the ones directly invited by the hostess herself. A good hostess has only one “class” of guest, and every guest is sent an invitation in his or her own name to his or her own address.

That being said, of course you will invite both spouses in any marriage (including a de-facto “marriage” of two people who are living together in a conjugal relationship whether or not you happen to know their legal status) and you will invite both fiances who make up any engaged couple (which means any couple who are planning to marry whether or not they have invested in an engagement ring or staged a public “proposal”.) These spouses and fiances are not considered “plus ones”, they are considered guests.

A hostess is expected to know all of her guests, because she is vouching for them to all of her other guests. If a friend is close enough to be invited to your formal parties, they are close enough that you will have met their spouse or fiance (and if not, you might reconsider if the ‘friend’ is really all that close after all.) You may certainly choose to invite a single friend’s current crush — provided that you know the person, and send the invitation to his own address, and plan to welcome him even if he breaks up with your single friend. You may — but do not have to –even ask a single friend if there is someone she would like you to invite, and arrange to be introduced to that person, and then send them an invitation.

But to offer single friends carte blanche to bring strangers turns your exclusive elegant affair into de-facto a public party to the detriment of its elegance. And it’s a small world. Do you really want the risk that some friend might bring your bridesmaid’s abusive ex? Or someone even more offensive?

Post # 7
1190 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

I think it depends on your budget.

We gave every invited person a plus one regardless if they were in a relationship or not. Most people who were not in a relationship did not bring someone, but some who were not in a relationship brought a friend.


Post # 8
3265 posts
Sugar bee

Social units (married, engaged and living together couples) MUST be invited together.  No one else is required to get a +1. 


But each guest needs to be addressed by name.  No “and guest” or +1. 


Post # 9
386 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

i gave everyone a plus one and wrote “and guest” on the invitations of people who were single. most people did not rsvp for a guest a few are bringing a best friend etc. i am fine with that. we even gave grandma a plus one (even though the family said not to because she’ll never use it) and it turns out she really wanted to bring a friend!

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