Wedding Recap and Withdrawal

How many people showed up vs. how many were invited?

Is the 83% attendance rate accurate?

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Re: How many people showed up vs. how many were invited?

  • climbingwifeclimbingwife NYC 'burbs
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    member
    No. Plan for 100% attendance. Nothing less. 

    AJC430Pupatella[Deleted User]japrincess24
  • AJC430 said:
    Is the 83% attendance rate accurate?
    I'm at about 65%.  So no, 83% is not accurate.  I also had a plan in place for 100% attendance....thankfully didn't have to use it as the venue would have been pretty crowded, but I was still prepared to seat and pay for everybody.
    Married 9.12.15
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    lc07AJC430
  • ILoveBeachMusicILoveBeachMusic Indiana
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary 5 Answers
    member
    edited September 2015
    We planned for 100% but had about 67%. This includes 7 who didn't show at the last minute.
    AJC430
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado
    Moderator Tenth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
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    We were 84.4%. That was a 100% OOT wedding and 174 people invited. 








    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
    AJC430
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston
    10000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
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    Never plan for any attendance rate other than 100%.  If you do, you run the risk that more people will show up than you have prepared for, which is a huge no-no.
  • Out of all of the guests that were invited, we had about 95% of those invited who actually RSVP yes, and then we had 4 people who had said yes, end up turning into No Shows (they contacted us in advance & let us know about emergencies that came up) but then 1 decline showed up at reception. So it's best to plan for 100% because people who our mom's told us would be just "curitosy invites" ended upcoming.

     

    AJC430
  • I read somewhere that 25% of those invited don't show up.  However, I'd go with what the other ladies have said and plan for 100% attendance. It's probably hard to estimate because everyone has different factors that effect attendance numbers.  For example, my fiance and I are getting married in the city where we currently live but neither of us/our families are from here.  I'm sure that factor will alter the attendance differently than if we got married in either of our hometowns.
    AJC430
  • When I read the title of this, I said to myself "it doesn't matter." 

    Because it didn't. We invited 215?ish and 130 came. We were prepared to host that many people, but it ended up being almost half the size.

    Luckily our venue was able to accommodate up to 300, but has also done intimate affairs for 25 based on the layout of the space, and it didn't really matter in the end. People have obligations, some days are easier than others, etc. Invite everyone you care about (at one time, no B lists) and you can afford to host. If they all show up, awesome huge party. If they don't, awesome close/intimate affair. 
    AJC430MGP
  • We had 72% attendance. We invited and were prepared to host 100 people and had 72 accept. There is no magic decline number or precentage. Only invite peopel who you are willing and able to host.
    image
    AJC430
  • julieanne912julieanne912
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary First Answer
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    edited September 2015
    OK now that the wedding is over, we had 132 confirmed yeses.  4 didn't show up, 3 were from the same group and the other was a friend who had a car break down up in the mountains earlier in the day.  

    My cousin also told me that at her wedding last year, her venue had a max of 200.  She invited 260.  201 showed up.  It was very cramped and we as guests missed stuff like their first dance etc. because the dance floor had to be moved to a different area on the property to make sure there was enough room for all the tables (it was an outdoor venue)
    Married 9.12.15
    image
    AJC430
  • hello

    we invited 208 and our venue could have held it no problem we had 83.6% confirmed. But I guess its weddingis different  

    AJC430
  • Thanks for the updates ladies! 

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  • I don't think there is a perfect number, but I've been in the wedding biz for several years, and am now planning my own wedding.  I am going with 10% not coming.  That is the basic number I've seen time and time again.  Approximately 10% don't show.  Maybe there is a little risk with it concerning food; but when you consider you'll have cocktail hour, dinner and cake, you will most likely have enough for everyone.  Is it a guarantee?  No...but it might not be with counting your guest count at 100%, either.  You might have a few big eaters, or your venue might skimp on you.  You never know what will happen, but one thing that has been consistent that I've seen is there is always leftover food.  And I personally don't want to pay for food to be thrown away.

    If you are very concerned about it, I'd ask your venue what size the portions are.  And ask if they prepare any extra, or if they can accommodate people who show up that haven't RSVP'd, and what the cost is on those meals.  I'd make sure they knew you were not counting on this happening, but you just want your bases covered, in case it does happen.    
  • ViczaesarViczaesar Central Coast, CA
    Eighth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
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    I don't think there is a perfect number, but I've been in the wedding biz for several years, and am now planning my own wedding.  I am going with 10% not coming.  That is the basic number I've seen time and time again.  Approximately 10% don't show.  Maybe there is a little risk with it concerning food; but when you consider you'll have cocktail hour, dinner and cake, you will most likely have enough for everyone. No!  "most likely" is not acceptable for hosting.    Is it a guarantee?  No...but it might not be with counting your guest count at 100%, either.  You might have a few big eaters, or your venue might skimp on you.  You never know what will happen, but one thing that has been consistent that I've seen is there is always leftover food. No, there isn't.  Especially when people plan poorly and don't order enough food for everyone who says they're coming! And I personally don't want to pay for food to be thrown away.  Far, far better to have too much food than to be remembered as 'that wedding where we were starving and had to leave early to go get dinner.'

    If you are very concerned about it, I'd ask your venue what size the portions are.  And ask if they prepare any extra, or if they can accommodate people who show up that haven't RSVP'd, and what the cost is on those meals.  ...Or just give them the number of people who RSVP yes and let them do their damn job!  I'd make sure they knew you were not counting on this happening, but you just want your bases covered, in case it does happen.    
    This is a terrible plan.  You need to have food for every person who RSVPs yes, and you need to be capable of accommodating and fully hosting 100% of your guest list.



    InLoveInQueensSP29kkcc2015
  • thisismynickname2thisismynickname2 City By The Lake
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary First Answer
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    Not only is no statistic accurate, and you should plan for 100% attendance, my additional advice is to not send save the dates to your entire guest list. VIPs only! 

    If you send STDs to everyone and something happens during the planning process, you cannot cut anyone from your list who received an STD. 

    Case in point, my friend's venue promised her room for 250. She sent STDs to 250. Her venue made some changes and told her she couldn't have more than 200. She was praying for 180 Yes replies and got 200. They only had enough chairs for 190 people to have dinner. 

    People were pissed. Had she not sent STDs to everyone, she could have cut down her guest list to avoid this problem.

    Don't rely on some random average decline rate. 
    ________________________________


  • I don't think there is a perfect number, but I've been in the wedding biz for several years, and am now planning my own wedding.  I am going with 10% not coming.  That is the basic number I've seen time and time again.  Approximately 10% don't show.  Maybe there is a little risk with it concerning food; but when you consider you'll have cocktail hour, dinner and cake, you will most likely have enough for everyone.  Is it a guarantee?  No...but it might not be with counting your guest count at 100%, either.  You might have a few big eaters, or your venue might skimp on you.  You never know what will happen, but one thing that has been consistent that I've seen is there is always leftover food.  And I personally don't want to pay for food to be thrown away.

    If you are very concerned about it, I'd ask your venue what size the portions are.  And ask if they prepare any extra, or if they can accommodate people who show up that haven't RSVP'd, and what the cost is on those meals.  I'd make sure they knew you were not counting on this happening, but you just want your bases covered, in case it does happen.    
    I fail to see how this would ever even be an issue if you just got your number of Yes RSVPs and gave that to your caterer for the head count.  Unless they are absolutely terrible at what they do, they will plan for enough food to feed your guest list plus some extra in case of large appetites or extra people show up.

    Maybe I'm confused, but are you advocating to plan for 10% of the guests who DID rsvp Yes to just not show up on the day?  So basically to have caterer plan enough food for only 90% of the people who said they are coming?  If so, this is awful advice.  When you are planning, you should expect 100% of your guests list to RSVP yes so you don't screw yourself financially or space-wise.  Once you have RSVPs back, you MUST plan for all of the Yes's to actually show up!


    InLoveInQueens
  • I agree with the general consensus of planning for a 100% attendance. I had about a 5% no show rate...things happen. 
  • I read a lot online when trying to determine our number before we sent the invites, and wedding location in relation to most of the guests plays a big part.  Most of my family (and friends) live in PA, and we had the wedding in CO (where we live now).  Since I knew it would be a big travel/money commitment for people, I assumed that the acceptance rate would be lower than it would normally be.  The closest estimate I got was by writing what I thought the probability would be of each guest (and plus one) of attending.  Parents, bridesmaids, etc., got a 100.  Close friends got high percentage, but friends with new babies got a low percentage.  I used my judgement based on each person, so some was arbitrary and some I thought were completely up in the air so I just put 50%.  I then took an average of all percentages, and applied it to the total number invited.  All in all, we invited 209 people, my estimate based on this percentage calculation was 120 people, and we ended up with 106 people.  We chose a venue that would fit everyone if everyone came, but the estimation was helpful in adjusting our budget along the way.    
  • Denise40Denise40 Montgomery County, Tx
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    We had 75 reply yes and only 49 showed up
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  • princessleia22princessleia22 Oceanfront Property in Arizona
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    It's a bad idea to invite more than you can accommodate.  People won't be happy if there isn't enough food or seats because you estimated low. 

    But, even if you don't follow the advice of planning for 100% attendance, DO NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES invite more than maximum capacity of your venue.  Often the maximum capacity is based on fire code and they will turn people away when that number is reached (or venue could face big problems/fines/possible legal action).  If most people do show up, you really don't want to have valued guests turned away at the door and not be allowed to attend.  Even if it doesn't violate fire codes, your guests will be crowded and miserable in a space that isn't designed to accommodate that many people.

    That isn't how you want your day to be remembered.  It will be a lot more enjoyable for everyone to just cut your list and invite the number of people that you can properly host.

    image 

    OurWildKingdom
  • We had 200 planned and 187 showed - one table had half of it completely empty - the other people we knew werent coming that morning so my maid of honor scrambled to move some tables around so there wasnt too many holes...

    We planned for everyone to come and rolled with the punches... I suggest you do too! 
  • We invited 186, 130 responded yes, and 124 actually came.
  • We invited 366, 234 responded yes and 212 actually came. 
  • Keep in mind our wedding was on a Friday at a ski resort in the winter.

    We invited 200, 126 responded yes, then there were some last minute cancellations and we ended up with 116 the day of the wedding.

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  • I'm not sure what happened at a recent wedding I went to--they seemed to have almost 100% show up (about 100-125 were there, and I only saw 2 couple's escort cards not picked up, and barely any empty seats.) 

    they ran ran out of food. We were the second to last table to get up for the buffet (which is why I hate buffets) and all that was left were soggy grilled veggies and rolls. 

    People at the last table left soon after because they were starving. 
  • I had 136 invited, 134 RSVP'd YES, and 133 showed up. 
  • So we originally invited 64 people (that number includes plus one's, so it was a small list). When RSVPs came back of the 64 invited 53 said they would come (several people simply weren't bringing guests). A week before the wedding I started receiving calls and texts that for multiple reasons done people couldn't make it. I last minute added 6 more people (they totally understood as the wedding was super small do no hard feelings on the lack of invite). The final count of people that actually showed up was 46. Turned out to be a very small event but made it a much more personal experience.

  • You have to invite the right people as your b list... My 6 included family of my bridesmaid whom I hadn't seen or talked to since high school and a friend from high school I hadn't seen in 6 years... I deliberately did not have a longer b list to avoid b listing people I knew would be upset about it. Notice I had room to add much more than 6. 

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