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Event Planning: Creating a Guest List

Do you have a big event coming up?  Whether it be a wedding, fundraiser, or birthday party, creating a guest list can be difficult.  You are bound to have input from several different people with conflicting opinions, causing even more confusion.  The most difficult part about creating the guest list, is knowing not everyone can come.  Events are always planned around a budget and the more people who are invited the higher the expenses will get.  Follow these steps to ease guest-list-stress!

1. Once a detailed budget is formed, you will know exactly how much each person will cost to host.  If your budget for food and drinks is allotted for $500 and you are holding a gathering that will cost you $20/person, you know you are able to invite 25 guests.

2. Now that you know how many guests you are able to invite, start with a list of people who absolutely need to be in attendance and draw a solid line after those names, these are the names that can not be eliminated no matter what.  After that, continue writing guests names that you would like to attend.  If there is more than one family involved, for example in a wedding, be sure that there are equal number of open spots for both sides of the family.

3. If you are over by a lot, I would recommend going back to the drawing board to see if there are any numbers in the budget you can re-arrange to make the per person cost less money.  By doing this, you are able to invite more people.  If you have done this and are still over allotted people, you must make cuts.  This is one of the hardest things about planning an event.  Be sure the cuts are fair and are not based on in the moment decisions.  Talk with at least 2 reasonable and neutral people (an event planner is a great outside voice to seek opinion from) and get some input.  After hearing other opinions, think about it for another day and then make your cuts.

If you have to make cuts on your guest list, it is very hard, but it is the smartest thing to do.  As an Event Planner, I have seen people try too hard to accommodate everyone, and end up regretting it in the long run because of how costly things can get.  The guest list is almost solely based on budget, and if there is one thing I am certain about, its that money doesn’t come out of thin air, so be wise and stay within your means.  Contact us at BTS Event Management if organizing your budget or guest list is something you need a hand with!  We are a full service event planning business that specializes in all events, Big to Small…

Call or email us to set up your complimentary consultation.  Mention this blog and receive 20% off event services!

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