Me and my Fiancé have planned our wedding and picked the perfect venue. The only problem is the only option for guests is either 30 or 60. We can either have only close family or triple our costs and invite 30 more people. By trippling our costs we are able to invite everyone that wants to come. My question is, in the invite I have asked everyone to give a $60 deposit towards their meal. This is because I really don’t want anyone to cancel last minute or bring extra unwanted guests. I also know pretty much no one will be buying us presents. So is it bad if us to ask for a deposit so we know we are not being taken advantage of?
Hey! Ya we had a whole bunch of free loaders trying to piggy back on to our wedding. These are people who have crashed our Christmas parties and birthdays before. they show up with a bunch of friends, eat and drink everything and leave. no gifts, cards or even a thank you. the venue we picked has really expensive food which we honestly don't mind if its just close family and friends, but these free loaders want to bring their entire family ( who i haven't even met) and its like $200 a plate for dinner, so if they bring an extra 4 people with them that like $1000 I'm paying and they already told me they can afford a wedding gift. we have multiple groups of people like this. They want to bring everyone in their family, they want us to pay for their hotels (they only live 30 minutes away) and they have made it known they have no money for a gift of any sort so i shouldn't expect anything. oh, and they want an open bar and at our venue we can not bring our own alcohol so each drink will cost me and my fiance $12.00. i have uninvited these people. i simply will not be spending $5000 (there's a huge group) for these people to show up and ruin my day. the people that are coming i have not made them put a deposit as now i can afford to have the people i really want there.
It sucks that people are trying to change your plans! I'm fairly easygoing, but I can also get very petty! I think, for those that have verbalized their discontent with your plans, charge them. Let them know since they wanted to come to something you can't afford, they will have to pay for their plate. If there are guests you are inviting that didn't object to your original plans, don't make them pay. I had a guest RSVP for "maybe 2". This was a guest who was not given a plus one. I told my husband to tell him he will have to pay for the second plate if he doesn't bring anyone. He changed his RSVP to 1.
Also, how is your food costing $10, 000 for 60 people? Even if alcohol is included, this seems like a lot to me!
I agree with Holly, it’s sort of frowned upon to ask people to pay to attend your wedding.. if you can’t afford to pay for the extra guests dinners I wouldn’t invite them. MOST people will give a wedding gift or will give you a card with cash, most of our guests have asked the cost of their meals so they can pay for their meals with their gift and that’s always what we have done in the past so it seems a standard thing to do.
Something else to consider is what would happen if they say they can come and then pay the deposit but something comes up, would you refund them? Would they think they had to pay a deposit plus a gift?
It really all depends on how you think your guests would feel being asked to pay the deposit.
I come from a huge family (200-300 people) and as small as it would be, i could not be able to afford to pay for every person's meal. My FH and I decided to pay for our imediate family, our bridesmaids and groom's men and that's it. I do not feel bad about making my guest pay.
Etiquette wise, it's a HUGE faux pas to ask guests to pay to attend your wedding. You are hosting your wedding, and you are responsible for your choice of venue and meals, and whatever budget that results in.
You have a few options:
1) Find a less expensive venue and invite everyone you want. Based on the numbers you provided, your venue is charging approximately 167$ per person for their meal - that's astronomical! You could book an entire restaurant for half that per head, easily. Or you could book a smaller hall and have it catered for 15-20% of that cost.
2) Have a morning brunch or late night reception with finger foods, and forgo the sit down meal.
3) Do what you wanted originally and elope. It is your wedding, and people complaining aren't the ones paying for it.
I think everybody here is on the same page so far, it's not something you do. As guests, they should want to give enough presentation to cover their meal and some drinks -but you can't ask for it up front.
I would either find a venue that the food doesn't cost $10,000 - like OH MY GOSH!! That is more than an arm and a leg!!! OR I would cut the list to just what you can afford to pay for.
The only thing I can think of that would allow all the people to come and you not be out that much money - is to do a Backyard reception where in that case I would say that it's okay to say BYOM (Bring your own meat!) and you just supply the side dishes. I've been to a couple BBQ parties like this where we just bring our own steak, burgers, hot dogs or whatever and take turns grilling. (More than 1 BBQ though!)
This is an important big lesson to learn, you are boss of your finances, never be persuaded to spend more than you can afford to make other people happy. It is extremely tacky to ask guests to leave a deposit for your asking them to join in the celebration. If they come do they get their deposit back?
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It’s difficult when others put pressure on you to have a wedding that you either don’t want or can’t adford. I can absolutely see why you’d want to charge your guests a deposit lol. I really think you should stick to your guns and either have a small wedding or elope. Screw the people who want to be there; it’s your wedding, not theirs!
I have heard of this gesture where families from Egypt, Cairo or any places from there do host receptions and have guests pay their plates for the hall. It a tradition within the culture and not just as a request.
The hosts pay for everyone that does attend otherwise. If you have more people attended, they would be left without a meal. I do find its important to know how many guests are coming and will have some not showing up on that day itself.
I would not ask guests to put down a deposit. Things happen, life happens. And some people may say they are coming now, but then something could happen and they would be unable attend and they would have lost their deposit. I don’t think it’s fair when you are hosting the party!
Yeeshk. I totally see where you're coming from but I agree guests should not pay for their dinner. Would it be possible to invite the extra people to your ceremony but not the reception and maybe organize a potluck style social for another date? At least that way you wouldn't be forking over (no pun intended) a mountain on catering and they would still get to be with you when you're hitched!
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People will get upset but at the end of the day you have to stick to your guns. You really really shouldn’t charge people to hold seats. People can ‘want to come’ all they like but it’s your wedding and it’s your decision to have a small one. I just think it’s really rude to request a deposit tbh.
Yes your totally right! We did try to elope and had people get very upset that there wouldn’t be a wedding to attend. So we at first organized a small intimate wedding and then had more people vocalize that they were upset they wouldn’t be able to attend. So now, we are at 60 people at a venue that only costs $1,000 BUT the food is $10,000. So that is why we are asking for the deposit. We have only 60 spots but over 80 people want to come. Hopefully people that are not willing to pay the deposit can make way for people that will and actually want to come. It’s so confusing and stressful 💔
Yes. It’s bad. You’re hosting a wedding - your wedding - and you shouldn’t charge people to go to it (even if it’s just a deposit!).
Can you not afford to pay for your guests? I understand that there’s a certain fear that people might end up being no-shows but that’s just a risk you take with having a wedding (with guests). If you don’t want to risk losing money, there’s other options. You could elope, have a VERY SMALL reception of only your closest friends and family, or just do something tiny and skip the reception altogether.