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Catherine
Beginner July 2024 Cornwall

Inviting partners we don't know/haven't met?!

Catherine, 14 of December of 2023 at 18:56 Posted on Planning 0 15

Hello Everyone!


My fiance and I are cureently sorting through our guest list for the wedding and trying to decide who to bump to just eve only to send out the invitations.


It's so hard as the majority of people are couples partners, which is annoying as it means there's people there we don't know coming, and we are therefore having to sacrifice people because of that! Ahhhh the stress begins lol.


We don't know whether to not invite partners if we don't know them but it feels wrong and some people will be coming from far away so kind of have to, and I don't know any of my cousins partners and they take up so much room 馃槶馃槴


Would it be OK and would people understand if we don't know your partner, they're not invited, or just bring them to the evening party instead?


We will be at max capacity if we did invite them, and that's still some people in evening that can't come all day that we would prefer to have, with partners who we do know/are friends with.


We've currently got 120 people for the whole day, and that's 12 tables and that feels wild !!! I thought we'd only have about 8 tables!


What are/what did people decide with this sort of thing?


Thanks so much xx


15 replies

Latest activity by Cazpot88, 9 of February of 2024 at 11:45
  • R
    VIP July 2020 Monmouthshire
    RomanticGreenStationery27135
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    The old etiquette used to be that you should invite any partners who were engaged or married - now that many people make a conscious choice not to marry, even if they've been together for years, it's harder to know where to draw the line, but as a general rule, a 'long term' partner should be invited along with your guest.

    Of course, you can invite whoever you want to your wedding, just be prepared for a higher than usual number of people declining if you invite them without their partner, especially if they will be travelling a long way to the wedding.

    As an alternative, could you rethink your guest list? It suggests that you are not in touch with some of your guests very often if you've never met their long-term partners - could you perhaps cut some of these people that you don't know so well?

    • Reply
  • C
    Curious November 2023 Derbyshire
    Cr
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    So we went with inviting partners (engaged, married or not) as we felt it was the right etiquette to do so. We had a much smaller wedding though.


    I think it was the right thing to do as I'd expect it in return. I hadn't met a good few of the partners and, unfortunately, I found the majority of the ones I hadn't met before extremely rude (they didn't come up to me once throughout the day nor to say thank you / goodbye at the end). The "unknown" partners tend to gravitate towards one another I've come to find.
    It's a tricky one to navigate but hopefully this response helps!
    • Reply
  • L
    Rockstar July 2023 Greater Manchester
    Lisa
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    We didn鈥檛 invite anyone we hadn鈥檛 both met before to the wedding & we have absolutely no regrets. Also we didn鈥檛 have any declines as a result of no +1鈥檚 either. I will say most of our guests were in groups anyway, except those we had as couple friends, and so the no +1 didn鈥檛 affect us that much. It did help though with cutting out a lot of the family that we don鈥檛 see/speak to (not because of drama just we鈥檙e all very spread out over the UK) so it meant we could have the smaller wedding we wanted and it was a fairly easy rule to remember - no-one we hadn鈥檛 both met before.
    It鈥檚 a hard line to balance, but it鈥檚 easier to pick a rule and stick with it. Also your cousins will all have each other, so it鈥檚 not like they鈥檒l be sat on their own if their partner isn鈥檛 there.
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  • S
    Dedicated March 2024 Hertfordshire
    SunnyPurpleFlowers85794
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    We only invited partners if we they were married. If they weren鈥檛, either one of us had to be close to them or have seen them a lot..
    my husband鈥檚 cousin was in a relationship for 5 years but we鈥檇 met him 3 times and didn鈥檛 know him well at all. We only invited him to the evening.

    His auntie kicked off a bit but nothing they could do, we weren鈥檛 fussed if his cousin didn鈥檛 come because of it. We鈥檝e found the people you want to bump to the evening, you wouldn鈥檛 be that close to them anyway so they鈥檙e unlikely to say anything. You can鈥檛 please everyone and you just have to put yourself and your numbers first. Be strict and do what you want!
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  • Georgia
    Curious February 2024 West Midlands
    Georgia
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    We鈥檝e only invited people we鈥檝e met - if we haven鈥檛 met them, married or not, they definitely aren鈥檛 invited. If we have met them but only a few times and the friend knows other people there, we鈥檝e spoken to them and explained. Only one person has had a problem with it! Good luck Smiley smile
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  • Katrina
    Savvy February 2025 West Midlands
    Katrina
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    I would only invite those I know personally. You have to do what's best for you both. Family should be understanding that spaces are limited. We will be having a micro wedding nice and small. So we really have to think about who we want to invite. Just close family members that have been there for us.
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  • H
    Beginner March 2026 Norfolk
    Hayleigh
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    Don鈥檛 feel obligated to invite partners of friends/family to the day if you don鈥檛 know them.
    You can always invite them to the evening.
    Weddings are so expensive and special so it should be people you want there not ones you feel obligated to invite.
    If my other half was invited to a friend鈥檚 wedding and I hadn鈥檛 met them I wouldn鈥檛 get upset if they didn鈥檛 invite me. Do what makes you happy not others x
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  • Lea
    Rockstar July 2023 Kent
    Lea
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    We decided to invite married or long term partners even though there were a couple we had not met before. It would seem strange not to otherwise. However, we specified that if people were not in a relationship they couldn't just bring a plus one because they wanted to. We also specified no children as we only had a small-ish wedding.

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  • A
    Dedicated March 2024 Essex
    Alison
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    I鈥檝e invited any partner who was in an established relationship that I knew about at the time the invitations were sent.


    Since then I have had two people start dating people and expect to be able to bring them but as my wedding is now less than 3 months away, it鈥檚 not happening and tbh I think it was unreasonable of them to ask.
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  • C
    Beginner July 2024 West Yorkshire
    Charlotte
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    We are the first of our friends to marry so we invited partners of those in the bridal/grooms party and then invited partners for those that are clearly committed e.g have house together, children together or are engaged.


    We aren鈥檛 allowing anyone to have a 鈥榩lus one鈥 instead we have got the the partners details and ensured that people are invited by names only.
    We also made this very clear on our wedding website so no one can bring a partner we鈥檝e not accounted for!
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  • I
    Beginner July 2025 Essex
    Isabel
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    I鈥檓 in the same boat as you!


    I think our plan is to err on the side of not inviting partners whom neither of us has met UNLESS the person we want to invite is travelling a long way and we are particularly close to them/they don鈥檛 know many other guests. If the person lives close by, an evening invite will be extended to their partner.I guess that may be inconsistent/perceived as unfair but weddings are so expensive! Also I would wonder why someone I haven鈥檛 met would want to watch me get married to someone else they also haven鈥檛 met?

    I wouldn鈥檛 be offended if my fianc茅 was invited to a wedding of someone I hadn鈥檛 met and I wasn鈥檛, particularly knowing what I do now about the price of weddings.
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  • D
    Beginner July 2015 East London
    Dane
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    It's a tricky situation balancing the guest list for your wedding. Consider the closeness of your relationship with each guest when deciding about their partners. For those traveling far, inviting their partners seems considerate. Maybe reevaluate the list to ensure those who mean the most to you and your fiance are present. It's your day, so it's important to have people around you who truly matter. Communicate openly with your guests about your decisions; most will understand. Remember, it's about celebrating your union in a way that feels right for both of you.

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  • Yvette
    Beginner November 2025 Cumbria
    Yvette
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    I was told recently by a wedding photographer that the rule of thumb these days is.... would you stop and chat in the street for 5 minutes or more? Would you go to dinner with that person? If the answer is no then why are you paying for a 3 course meal for them.
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  • Cazpot88
    Curious August 2025 Greater Manchester
    Cazpot88
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    I love this, and it's made sorting out our guests much easier 馃榿 xx
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  • Cazpot88
    Curious August 2025 Greater Manchester
    Cazpot88
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    @Catherine At the end of the day, it's yours and your grooms day


    We're having immediate family, and our best friends at the ceremony, and the rest of the family will be at the reception; because its an afternoon ceremony, and it's at our registry office
    I'm sure they'll understand if you explain to them, and if they love you, they'll make it to your wedding no matter what x
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