Will a Reception Only Wedding Affect Turnout?

posted 1 year ago in Guests
Post # 16
Member
1164 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2019 - City, State

I’m not a stickler for ettiquette AT ALL, but this really bothers me. If I’m not important enough to see you get married, why bother inviting me at all? We’ve been invited to 2 reception-only events where the couple got married separately, and I only went bc I didn’t want to make a stink, but I still feel a certain way about it. Sorry if that’s harsh.

Post # 17
Member
1787 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2019

In the us it just doesn’t come across right. Invite people to both but be frank about the climb and offer them the option of just going to the reception. 

 

Ohhh, or have the ceremony filmed and play it first thing at the reception. That way they feel apart of it

Post # 20
Member
2112 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

ive been to two reception only weddings. Both had a pretty low turnout. One was a court house wedding so i kinda understood why they didnt have an actual ceremony. But another one had a ceremony but it was strictly family only. 

Personally i enjoy getting to see the ceremony more then the actual reception, but thats just me. 

Post # 21
Member
3082 posts
Sugar bee

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rob31 :  I like watching the ceremony!

Maybe a bunch of ladies on a wedding website may give different answers vs. the general public on that particular question LOL.

Can you at least put the offer out there that people can choose to attend the ceremony, but because it is so far from town and reception site you will understand if people could only make the reception? Highlighting the medical constraints and the hike. 

I think i would be a little miffed about being shunned from the ceremony, but invited to reception later that day. Depending on how close we were, i would probably still attend. But again, i’d feel ….”less important”? I am not sure how to phrase it. I certainly wouldnt tell you or make a scene or anything – just how i would feel.

Post # 22
Member
7841 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

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rob31 :  Im confused, are people hiking up to 10,000 ft? 

Post # 23
Member
338 posts
Helper bee

Reception only invites are very common in my culture. The marriage ceremony happens in private, usually at home, with family. And then the reception is held where the bride and groom are ‘presented’ as husband and wife for all to see. It can be a really huge reception. I’ve been to ones with 1000 people. My sisters both got married in my mom’s living room.. and then had 500+ guests at the reception. I get it its not the western culture, but you do you. Its 2019.

Post # 24
Member
2537 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: March 2017

Your reception would be at 10k feet and you will have guests coming from sea level? Even your healthy guests may get altitude sickness. It could be really difficult for guests who have medical issues. I’ve gotten altitude sickness before and it was no fun. 

Post # 25
Member
3360 posts
Sugar bee

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rob31 :  “I know that sounds selfish, but hey, we love our ceremony idea…” 

Well, it’s a matter of deciding if you love your ceremony idea more than you love your guests.

Post # 26
Member
2514 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

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rob31 :  Oh dear god NO!! Do not play a video of the ceremony. That would be even worse. People like the ceremony because it is the actual union of two people. I’d be bummed to miss the ceremony but pissed to have to watch it second hand with possible grainy footage and bad audio. A 15 – 20 minute ceremony flies by when your in the moment and feeling it. But watching it second hand wouldn’t have nearly the same effect and would be boring AF IMO

Post # 27
Member
7480 posts
Busy Beekeeper

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rob31 :  But we don’t want to compromise our dream of having it on a mountain because other wanted to see it (it is suppose to be the happiest day of OUR lives, right?).

You should elope. You may plan for just yourselves if you elope, alone. As soon as you invite guests you must take their comfort and well-being into consideration. 

Post # 28
Member
2670 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2018

rob31 :  After reading your updates regarding your plan, I would elope on that mountain then plan a big party to celebrate in a more convenient (and safe?) location for your guests.

Just know that the party is the expensive part, we had 70-80 people (can’t remember the exact # now) and it cost us like $7K, and we didn’t do a sit down dinner, DJ, cake or any of the more traditional wedding reception stuff.

Also- having a private ceremony followed by a big party is becoming a lot more common, at least where I live (west coast, US). People just love to hate on it on this forum.

Post # 29
Member
1282 posts
Bumble bee

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rob31 :  So your wedding vision is more important than not just the comfort, but health of your guests?  Ok, got it.  You say you don’t want to be selfish but that’s exactly what you’re being.

You do understand that people take a lot of time, and money, to attend you wedding and/or reception because they care about you, right?  And delibrately excluding them so that you can have your precious vision again really rubs me the wrong way.

Good thing I’m not invited because you’d get a bit fat no from me.  Exluding people for the sake of keeping your costs and numbers down is just wrong.

Post # 30
Member
3717 posts
Sugar bee

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futuremrs2020 :  people are so funny on this site.  

I’m actually fine with less people attending our “we’re already married, but we want to throw a party with our friends and family on a boat” party. 

I might add a caveat on the invitation that if you feel slighted because you didn’t witness our vows (we are going to the courthouse alone) or are worried about feeling “trapped” on the boat for a couple of hours, then stay home because I care about your feelings and comfort. ::sarcasm::

It’s an invitation, not a subpeona.   If something offends you so deeply, my advice for you is to decline. 

ETA:  OP, what you are planning is fine.  Yes, you might get people who choose to decline, but that will happen regardless of if you are having a typical wedding.

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