Monday, April 8, 2013

How to estimate wedding attendance

estimate wedding attendance

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Knowing the number of guests that will attend your wedding is important to control and anticipate costs. Unfortunately, guests are not always so cognizant that their lack of attendance or unexpected arrival can greatly affect your pocket. There is no way to know exactly how many of your invitees will attend the wedding, but estimating attendance for the big day provides an accurate measurement of how many people you will need to accommodate.


    • 1

      Create a list of all invited guests. You will separate the guests on this master list into three separate lists: guaranteed, local and out-of-town.

    • 2

      Write a guaranteed list. This list is composed of all invited guests that are guaranteed to show. Typically, this list will include your parents, siblings, close friends and relatives that live nearby. Estimate that 100 percent of the guests listed on this list will show.

    • 3

      Create a list of local invitees. Locals generally live within 60 miles of the wedding location. Estimate that 90 percent of these guests will show.

    • 4

      Estimate the total for the out-of-town list. The invitees on this list are more likely to show if they've known you for a long time, have been in recent contact with you and have the money to travel. The estimate for this list ranges between 40 and 85 percent. Dexknows suggests a good working estimate for out-of-towners is 65 percent.

    • 5

      Add extra guests that are brought by invitees without spouses. Estimate that 30 to 50 percent of these guests will bring a date.

    • 6

      Total the number of guests from Steps 2 to 5. For example, if you have 60 local guests listed, 90 percent of 60 equals 54. If you have 40 out-of-town guests listed, 65 percent of 40 is 26. Add 26 to 54, plus the number of guests on your guaranteed list. Then add an additional 30 to 50 percent to the guest total for the number of guests that don't have spouses.

Tips &- Warnings

  • For destination weddings, TheKnot recommends that you estimate a 50 percent total attendance rate. This rate will vary significantly depending upon how far the wedding is from the majority of your invited guests. If the wedding is in a country that requires a passport to enter, the total attendance will often decrease significantly from 50 percent.


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