Ask Christina: Plus One or Plue None?

Posted On: Wednesday, October 05, 2011

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Dear Christina,

What is the etiquette (for budget minded couples) on whether or not to invite a +1 for all of your single friends? It seems to cut into the overall number of guests that a couple would be able to extend invites to…

This is a common question I get from all my clients. 

Adding plus ones has a few pros and cons:

Pro: More people to celebrate your wedding day!
Con: Costs you more money and also may limit the number of other people you’d like to invite.

Pro: Your guest will have a date and someone to chat and dance with all night.
Con: He/She could bring any random date who you’ve never met and makes for an uncomfortable situation when the date gets really wasted and tries to make a speech.

My basis rules for inviting a plus one requires the couple to fit into one of these categories:
1) Couple must be serious (dating for a long time or couple is a committed relationship)
2) Couple must be living together
3) Couple is engaged
4) Couple is married

Now, if you have a minimum guest count for a venue and need to fill up seats, adding plus ones is a great idea.  Also, if you have extra room in your budget to allow your single guests to bring a date of their choice, that’s fine too. 

Special circumstances can be made such as:

1) Guest would not know anyone else at the wedding except bride and groom
2) Guest is traveling overseas for wedding, so would probably be traveling with a companion

Speaking of plus ones, there is always an issue of guests who feel like they can bring their whole posse. What to do about extra uninvited guests?  Stay tuned!