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On the List! People You Have to Invite to Your Wedding

We have talked about people you don’t have to invite to your wedding in the past, but there is the question of who do you have to invite. 

When we say 'have' to invite, of course you don't have to invite anyone! The underlying wedding rule is that there are no rules when it comes to your day. You don’t have to invite specific people to your wedding if you don’t want them to be there, but if you’re trying to write your guest list and don’t know where to start there is age old etiquette about who you should have present when you exchange your vows. 

These people are the VIPs, the A list, basically the people you can’t imagine getting married without them present to witness your day.

Family first

Your families are the first ones to make your list. If you’re keeping your wedding intimate then think about who you want to witness your wedding – your parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles. These are the people that mean the most to you and you can’t imagine getting married without them. If your parents are footing a large percentage of the bill then they will be expecting an invite, so they have to be on your guest list. 

Your BFFs

We’re talking about those true deep down friends who know you in and out. The ones who can drive you crazy but are always there for you when you need them. You’ve been friends since you first rode a bike, or you could be friends from your first job. However you know your BFF you want them there at your wedding. They might be your bridesmaids so will automatically be at your wedding, but you might have other friends who won’t be in your bridal party but you want at your ceremony.  If you’re inviting your friend (or friends) then your husband-to-be gets to invite his too (even if they are the most irritating guys in the world). It’s only fair! 

The plus-ones

You have your family and best friends on the list so who’s next. Well if they have husbands, wives or long-term partners you have to invite them too. The same applies to your bridesmaids, they should get to bring a guest, but within reason of course. If you have the budget then single guests, or ones in new relationships, should get to bring someone too, but if you’re budget is tighter than the ring on your finger then you don’t have to give them a plus-one (although they might not be happy about it).

Family obligations

Now this is where things get tricky. There are some people you might have to invite through family obligations. Your parents will have certain people that they want to invite (we know that it’s your day, but if they’re paying then they should get a few names on the list) so you can allocate them a number of invitations that they can send for them. You can impose a rule that they can only invite family, or people who are practically family, to the wedding, but you will probarbly have some guest list debating to look forward to. 


Once you have these people on your guest list you can move down to the next level of the chain including your other friends, co-workers and anyone else you’re considering inviting to your wedding.

There will always be people you will spend hours mulling over – should they be invited or not? If you are working to a tight budget then only invite as many as you can afford, but if you can afford to have a decent guest list then add them to the list!

At the end of the day, it’s your wedding so you do it your way!


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