(Closed) rehearsal dinner advice!

posted 6 years ago in Etiquette
  • poll: (2) questions: Who is included on your invitation list for the rehearsal dinner? Is cash bar ok?
    Only those in the wedding and their families/spouses (including flower girl, usher etc..) : (49 votes)
    40 %
    Option 1 PLUS out of town family : (13 votes)
    11 %
    Option 2 PLUS all out of town guests : (11 votes)
    9 %
    Yes, cash bar ok at the rehearsal dinner : (22 votes)
    18 %
    No, cash bar is tacky at the rehearsal dinner : (26 votes)
    21 %
  • Post # 3
    428 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: April 2013

    We’re only having our families and those directly involved with the wedding (and their SOs). That should be 23 people, including us.

    FI’s parents are hosting, so I don’t know what the alcohol situation is going to be for ours, but if we were hosting I would probably provide a couple types of beer and wine only. It wouldn’t cost much for 23 people, and if they want anything else, I think it’s acceptable for them to pay.

    Post # 4
    9053 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: June 2010

    Ours was hosted at my aunt/uncle’s house near our slightly out of town venue.  They provided all the meat for the dinner and my parents paid for the sides and I think both sets of parents brought some wine/beer.

    We invited only the aunt/uncle, our parents and wedding party (siblings and their spouses were in the party, and our friends happened to be single/spouses unavailable).  We didn’t have flower girl/ring bearer, so it was just 15 of us. 


    Post # 5
    1966 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: September 2013

    Only the bridal party, our parents, fg (our daughter) and the bridal parties significant others. We just had my sisters her inlaws paid. It was about 20 people. They provided. A sit down dinner, beer and wine. It was really nice. If anyone wanted hard alcohol (the grooms men did a shot to kickoff the night) they paid for it themselves. 

    Post # 6
    435 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: November 2013

    @sunshinebee:  We’re inviting everyone (since everyone will be out-of-towners). My sister had a huge fight with my parents for her recent wedding. My parents claimed that everyone involved in the wedding and any Out of Town guest should be invited. 

    I actually kind of think that all Out of Town guests should be invited. I mean, they travel to get their and then the night before the wedding they just have to sit in their hotels alone? I think it’s a little weird, personally, but I could totally understand not wanting to break the bank on the rehearsal dinner. If you can’t afford it, don’t worry about it. If you can, invite them!

    Oh and, cash bar for a rehearsal dinner is, in my opinion, totally okay.

    Post # 7
    911 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: October 2013 - The Down Town Club, Philadelphia

    We are hosting our own rehearsal dinner. It will just be wedding party and immediate family (plus wedding parties spouses).

    It will be about 40 people.

    We are just hosting beer, wine and soda. No hard alcohol. If they want that, they can order from the restaurant, but we will not be footing the bill. 

    Also, I think we luck out bc our rehearsal in on Thursday, so not all of our out of town guests will be in town yet.

    Post # 8
    1416 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: January 2013

    Instead of a cash bar I would honestly just suggest getting a couple boxes of wine. Seriously. I have found that people always prefer free alcohol over paying, even if it’s not the expensive stuff.


    We just did wraps, soup, boxed wine and a couple cases of beer.

    Post # 10
    5001 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: September 2013

    My Fiance and I are paying, so only our bridesmaids and groomsmen (10 total), their SO’s (we’re expecting about 5), our parents (4) and maybe a few other people if we go super cheap- pizza on the beach!!

    Post # 11
    95 posts
    Worker bee
    • Wedding: March 2013

    95% of our guests are out of towners – FI’s side is traveling in to NYC from the UK and mine is coming in from all over the US.  We are having a rehearsal dinner with just the wedding party and SOs and immediate family, about 40 people.  We are having it at a restaurant in Brooklyn that we absolutely adore and will offer wine and beer throughout the three hour booking.  We’ll probably throw a credit card behind the bar in case people want mixed drinks.  The dinner will wrap up earlyish (8:30) and we’ve reserved space at a neighborhood bar for everyone to come join us if they wish.  

    Post # 12
    1548 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: November 1999

    The rehearsal dinner is to thank your family and friends for being part of your wedding and all that goes along with it. Personally, I think its rude to invite them to dinner and expect them to pay for their own drinks. I think its fine if you just want to serve beer and wine, or just margaritas with well alcohol and they need to pay for upgraded drinks. 

    Post # 13
    964 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: June 2012

    DHs parents paid for the dinner and told everyone they had to pay for their own alcohol. Wedding in Cleveland and we live in Texas = lots of out of town guests, so they were all invited. Ended up with like 50 people at a British pub with great food and everyone was stuffed and happy!

    by the way, I wanted pizza and pasta and they said NO WAY!

    Post # 14
    2542 posts
    Sugar bee

    We had our parents, siblings, and wedding party + their spouses. There ended up being about 18 of us. We held it at my parents and had submarine sandwiches, tons of salads, baked goods, etc. Bought some wine and then beer and pop for the coolers for people to help themselves to. Doesn’t have to be a lot of money to be a good time!

    Post # 15
    1880 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: April 2013

    My family does all family at the rehearsal dinner, plus wedding party/spouses… so ours is going to be like 60 people. We wanted to do a cash bar because my fiance and I are paying for it ourselves AND it’s in the afternoon but my dad is flipping out about it. We think it’s not a big deal since it’s an early dinner, but we’ll probably either do drink tickets or wine/champagne only.

    I think ALL out of town guests is overkill… for us, all out of town guests on top of the family and wedding party would be 100ish people. Maybe around 130 (it depends if “three hours away” counts as out of town). That would be like half the cost of the wedding, lol. Just our 60 people is already going to be 5-6k.

    Post # 16
    8576 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: October 2014

    We are having our rehearsal dinner at a buffalo wild wings. I don’t think a cash bar is needed for a rehearsal dinner, unless it’s HUGE. We’ll pay for any drinks our guests would like during the dinner.

    We are only inviting our parents, siblings, bridesmaids, best men, DJ and officiant. Maybe 13 people in total?

    The topic ‘rehearsal dinner advice!’ is closed to new replies.

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