What to do about guests wanting to bring dates when the wedding is far away.

By Nancy Mattia
May 09, 2019

It's a conundrum: You want to have a destination wedding in part because it's an easy way to keep the guest list (therefore, the budget) manageable but your single guests have been asking about plus-ones. While you would like to accommodate them all those extra guests will mean an extra expense. What should you do? Since a destination wedding that lasts a few days isn't the same thing as a celebration in your hometown that lasts a few hours, the courteous response would be to say yes to plus-ones. Here's why.

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Guests may not want to travel alone.

If some guests aren't used to traveling by themselves, they may feel hesitant navigating airports, planes, taxis, and hotels on their own. Traveling with a companion makes the journey less stressful.

Some will make it into a vacation.

Since they're traveling so far and paying for airfare, hotels, and meals, guests may like to add a day or two before or after the wedding for some vacation time. But most wouldn't do that without a travel pal.

Single guests may have a hard time connecting with others.

In an ideal world, all your guests would get to know one another and become buddies over the course of the weekend. But if you've got a sizable guest list, it may not feel like a cozy get-together. The people who already know one another will hang out together, and the people who don't know anyone may be spending much of their time alone unless they're extroverts.

Don't pick and choose who gets to bring a plus-one.

You may be thinking it's okay to let a guest bring a long-time boyfriend or girlfriend but not extend the invitation to a single without a significant other, but that's not going to fly with your partner-less guests. To avoid hurt feelings, extend the plus-one invite to all single guests. They might opt to not bring someone but let them make the decision.

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