As my wedding date inches closer, I have found myself having conversations (often times yelling) that I never thought would be necessary. After talking to my friends that have traveled this road before, there will be heated conversations with family members, tears, and sleepless nights. Who knew the road to wedded bliss would be paved with broken nails, tears, and not-so-nice conversations with loved ones.
One of the biggest arguments lately has led me to research the etiquette behind the most awful phrase to any bride trying to work with a budget and space restrictions, “Do I get a plus one?”
From day one, my fiancé and I said, “If you are in a loving and committed relationship, then you get a plus one.” And according to the majority of wedding etiquette rules, if a couple is married, engaged, or living together then the couple is required to invite both parties (which we have done). However, it is completely up to us as a couple to decide whether or not SINGLE people get a plus one, “Guest”.
Once upon a time, weddings took place in the backyard of the bride’s parents’ home and family members brought a dish to feed the guests. Weddings served as a day of celebration for the entire neighborhood and anyone who has known the couple at any point in their lives. However, today weddings can be quite costly. According to an article in the Huffington Post, the average cost per person for weddings is $196. With numbers like that, if I thought enough of you to put you on my list, then I have a relationship with you and want you to be there to help me celebrate. But I am not interested in you bringing a “date”, especially someone that I do not know and you really only invited because you thought they would look nice in your pictures.
As much as my fiancé says, “Stick to the budget!” the plus one issue is not solely based on dollars. The real issue is the limited space in the ballroom. We chose a ballroom that we thought would be sufficient that overlooks the ocean, it’s beautiful. I have selected a dinner and centerpieces, and if everyone gets to bring a plus one…all of that will have to change.
My advice to brides:
- Have a serious conversation with your loved ones about the vision for your wedding, and why they can’t all have a plus one. If you need to cry, shed a few tears, especially in front of your father.
- If you are having a destination wedding, explain to those who do not want to travel alone, that they’re “guest” will be welcome at any other event planned for the weekend, but the limited space during the reception will not allow you to accommodate their friend.
- And if none of this seems to work, hire a very large security guard to check names at the front door…similar to the guy that works outside of the hot nightclub where you have to know someone to get inside.
Anyone have additional advice on how to handle plus ones? I am taking all the advice I can get!