The art of changing your mind: how to disinvite guests from your wedding

Weddings no doubt take an awfully long time to plan. According to WeddingWire, the journey from getting engaged to walking down the aisle takes on average 13 months, but whether you’re opting for a long or short engagement, deciding on the guest list is one of the first things most couples tick off that wedding planning to-do list.

Knowing how many guests will attend your special day can dictate your wedding venue, menu and even your entertainment options. There is however one big problem with deciding on your guest list early…

During this time, your friendship groups, job situation or family circumstances may change, which will leave you in a sticky situation if you’ve invited guests and now don’t want them to attend your wedding.

It is every marrying couple’s prerogative to change their minds. Whilst changing your wedding date once booked is certainly not advisable, changing your guest list is. You deserve to spend your wedding day with the people who you want to share this very special occasion with. On that note, it is possible to uninvite guests from your wedding, here’s how to do just that – politely!

Be clear on the reasons why

Being honest with the guests you are looking to disinvite from your wedding is a must, so be sure to get your story straight before you break the news.

There are many reasons why you may be having second thoughts about certain guests. Other than personal reasons like you not being as close to the person or people in question, you may have opted for an alternative wedding venue with a smaller capacity or perhaps you have decided on a more intimate wedding. Your wedding budget may be another reason why your original guest list is no longer feasible.

Thankfully, due to previous Covid-19 restrictions, would-be guests are much more understanding about being ditched from weddings, so don’t be afraid to be honest and direct about the reasons behind your decision.

Remember to consider their feelings

It can be disappointing not to make the cut, especially if you’ve already sent them a save-the-date or wedding invitation but then go on to change your mind. Weddingbee offers their advice for dealing with disappointed guests:

“If you are not inviting someone you think may take it harshly, for example someone who thinks they are closer to you than you do, or a sibling that likes to make scenes, you may want to have coffee with them and explain why you couldn’t include them as nicely as possible. Always make sure that you refrain from talking about your wedding around anyone you’ve left out in order to avoid putting salt in the wound.”

Deliver the news face-to-face…

There are several ways that you can break the news to the guests you plan to disinvite. Whilst intimidating, having this difficult conversation in person or over the phone is the best option, especially if you want this person to remain in your life long after your wedding has been and gone.

With a face-to-face conversation or phone call, you can limit the risk of miscommunication, gauge their reaction and soften the blow.

…or use technology to your advantage

Sometimes a face-to-face conversation or phone call isn’t applicable, in fact, it depends on the relationship you have with each recipient. For distant friends, colleagues, acquaintances or anyone you’re not particularly close to, sending an email or text message is the ideal solution.

Avoid emailing or messaging all your uninvited guests in one go, however. Although ditching guests in bulk is convenient and efficient, it can come across as impersonal and disingenuous.

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