How Many Wedding Invites Should I Order?

Heidi Moore • wedding wedding advice & tips

Wedding Tips and Advice

Welcome to the idieh design GIRL TALK SERIES! We’ve made it our mission to guide brides in their wedding journey with some legit advice about wedding stationery, planning, and all things in between.

We want every bride’s experience to be as smooth as possible. So we’ve gathered all the best tips and advice you could possibly need to help plan the wedding of your dreams.  Find more tips & tricks here.

When it comes time to order those wedding invites, many brides just count the number of their guests on their master guest list and think, that’s that. Well, we’ve got two things that every bride needs to know before they order too many or worse, not enough, wedding invites.

TIP #1: No. of Invites ≠ No. of Guests

First things first, you do NOT need as many wedding invites as you have guests!

While it might seem like common sense, many times at idieh design we hear that the wedded-couple-to-be needs 200 wedding invites. When in all reality, they are expecting 200 guests to attend the special day. The best way to combat this mistake is to remember this rule of thumb:

200 guests = approximately 100 wedding invites. 

TIP #2: 60% Rule

The second tip brides should put to good use before they want to order their wedding invitations is, start out with just 60% of your total guest list. But wait, don’t I just need exactly half of my total guest list?

In a perfect world, yes darling, you would. But think of it like this – wedding invites are sent to couples. Then you need to consider the families with children and any single and looking invitees. While this mix of guests can even each other out, generally speaking, the extra 10% is covered.

Now, we’re not saying you should go out and order whatever 60% of your total guest list ends up being. All we mean is that it is a great place to start to get an estimate of what your actual numbers will be and help you determine your budget.

TIP #3: Lines = Invitations

What’s the best way to figure out the actual numbers?

Luckily for you, we have a tried and true system that allows you to stay organized and it helps make the invitation process easier down the line. (Want it to be EVEN easier?! If you choose idieh design for your stationery needs, we offer the option to digitally print the return and guests addresses for you, too! SCORE.)

To get started follow these steps:

1. Use a spreadsheet – Excel is a great example.

2. List each household you need to send invites to in a separate row. For example:

  • Each Couple in its individual row (Mr. and Mrs. Smith)
  • Each Family in its individual row (The Smith Family)
  • Each Single in its individual row (with or without plus one)

Note: Make sure you include yourself, your bridal party, and the parent’s of the soon-to-be newlyweds. While it might seem ok to skimp out on ordering their invites, because duh, they are invited, these are the people who will cherish the invitations the most. 

3. Once you’re done, if everything has been inputted into the spreadsheet correctly, the number of lines within the spreadsheet will be the number of wedding invites you will need. Yay! So easy!

TIP #4: Order Extra

You’ve got the exact numbers now, but you’ll still need just a few more. You might be thinking, “Huh? I thought I had my numbers down?” Let me tell you from experience, you will thank yourself later by ordering extra.

Start with at least 10 extra wedding invite added to your guest list total from the spreadsheet. That’s a minimum you should stick to. Have a think on this for second. Let’s say your guest list is at 200 and you’re spreadsheet indicates you need to order 100. Add in an extra safe cushion of 20% to cover all emergencies and order 120 wedding invites.

20%? That’s way more than I will ever need! Before you forego the idea of this comfy safety net, consider all the scenarios that could possible happen in the two months before you need to send the wedding invites to the post office.

A.) Mother of the Groom insists on adding 4 more guests to the list.

B.) You’ve realized you forgot to invite your great aunt Jane.

C.) Your mother decides she needs to invite a few people from work.

D.) Your grandmother tells you she wants to keep one for posterity – and then so does your mother, the mother of the groom, etc.

E.) Your Groom insists you send an invite to his college buddy who is overseas – even though they won’t be coming to the wedding.

And we still haven’t considered any invitations that could get lost in the mail or returned due to having a wrong address!

Bet that extra 20% sounds like a lifesaver now!

All things considered, do yourself a HUGE favor and order just a few more invites to have on hand in any scenario or situation. Wedding planning is stressful enough as it is and if you can save yourself the headache, or worse, a last minute panic, the better! (Believe me, it’s WAY more costly to have to order more invites down the road then ordering them all upfront.)

Wanna learn more awesome and helpful tips about the wedding planning process? Check out our GIRL TALK SERIES for more!

Tell us about your wedding planning experience! How many invites did you order and why?