(Closed) Polite way to announce no kids???

posted 6 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
3625 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

On your website, you can put things like, “The formal adult reception will take place at xyz”. Of course, the invitations will be made out to Mr. and Mrs. ABC. If you want, you can prefill in “_ of 2 seats have been reserved in your honor” for the RSVP card. Do not include anything about adults/kids on the invitation itself.

I would not put “no kids” or “adults only” as that’s kind of “in your face!”. I think it’s better weaving it in by stating it’s an adult reception. We did that and it was fine. We left it open on the RSVP and we only had one couple fill in 3 and write (name of dad + name of mom + name of kid). We had to talk to those people in person. Usually, anyone so gauche as to add kids when the envelope says “Mr. and Mrs.” will ignore anything else that states “no kids” so you end up having to talk to them and verify anyway.

Post # 5
8444 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: April 2013

@bbridetobee:  It really doesn’t matter what you put on the invite, people will try to bring their kids anyways.  Ours flat out said that it wasn’t appropriate for those under 18, and people still asked if they could bring their kids.

Post # 6
942 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

We have the invites addressed to ONLY the people we want to show-up. On the invite, we have 

‘please join us for an adult reception after the ceremony at …..’  Not rude, but direct. I will have to let you know how many kids end up at the wedding… I hope none.

Post # 7
9952 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2012

Who the Invite is addressed to is the key (and the basic Rule of Etiquette that has been around for centuries)

So make sure you do the addressing correctly… JUST the names of those invited on the Inner Envelope

Example… Mr & Mrs John Black

OR Judy & John Black

Many Brides here on WBee swear by the concept of using Reception & Response Cards… and having the Response Cards that have the phrase ” ___ seats have been held in your honour”… where the Bride fills in the number of persons they’ve invited, and then the Guest further fills out the RSVP Card with their Menu choices:

___ Roast Beef

___ Chicken

AND lastly, some Brides are now changing the Etiquette accepted phrase “Reception to Follow” at the Bottom of their Invitation to “Adult Reception to Follow”

OF course, there are always those who STILL SEEM to not get it… or WHY… or JUST ARE COMPLAINERS who will call you up and try to twist your arm in allowing their “darlings” to attend…

The best advice… stand firm. 

If No Kids is what you want for the Reception then no kids you should have (besides, with some of the high costs of catering that couples are facing these days, I can see why, I’d be hard pressed to put out $ 50 per head for a child… let alone $ 200 that some Receptions are charging !!)

I agree tho, that if the kids in the Wedding Party are family… and not all toddlers, then it makes sense to invite them to sit with their Parents for Dinner… as it is but one more way to thank them for a Job well done.

BUT, I also have no qualms about booking a Babysitter for the adorable little ones once the Party / Dance portion gets underway… so that their Parents can kick back and enjoy themselves as well and not be quite so worried about it being Johnny’s bedtime.

Hope this helps,


Post # 9
1844 posts
Buzzing bee

We have a lot of daughters.  The last one to marry was almost 4 years ago and we knew this was going to be an issue with her biomom’s and stepdad’s side.  DD and her Darling Husband wanted kid free wedding.  Biomom and stepdad weren’t paying for the wedding so they didn’t win that battle.  

For our side, we had quite a bit of time to spread it through the family by word of mouth.  When someone asked about the wedding we would find a polite way to slip into the conversation that is was adult only.  DH’s 2 sisters did not attend because of this.  We were fine with that.  When you decide to go no kids, some people won’t attend.  Your choice to go no kids, their choice to not attend.  We were gracious about all of the declines.

Can you enlist your parents to help you get the word out through the family?

DD’s biomom is one of 7 and her stepdad is one of 10.  They wanted ALL of the cousins invited (and any kids they have).  Um, no.  Because both sides of that family are infamous for bringing extra uninvited guests to a wedding we did this:

2 seats have been saved in your honor

John Smith  ___will ___will not attend

Jane Smith  ___will ___will not attend

They got our drift but I was holding my breath on it until everyone was seated at the reception.

When someone asks about the wedding, slip it into the conversation.


Post # 10
10453 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: February 2014

Make it very clear on your response cards by having something like “we have reserved ## seats for you”. 

Post # 11
59 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

I wouldn’t say no kids allowed, but maybe in the invite say something to the effect of,


Two seats reserved in your honor, mr and mrs xxxx

Post # 12
8668 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

We just put “adult reception to follow” at the bottom of the invite. Maybe it wasn’t perfect etiquette, but it saved us a ton of headaches.

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