mmbrake28
Expert August 2018

How many ppl at your rehearsal dinner? (planning Rehearsal Dinner questions)

mmbrake28, on March 6, 2018 at 1:42 PM Posted in Parties and Events 0 21
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So, my wedding is on August 11th. About 5 months away (omg). Anyway, my FH's father and mother-in-law are hosting our rehearsal dinner. They have a beautiful backyard and it's pretty big, and they want to host a catered meal with a bartender and have cute string lights and decorations. They're very excited about it (even though the rehearsal dinner is at the bottom of my priority list).


Anyway, I just got a call from FH's dad (FH is currently deployed which makes wedding planning even harder and more stressful....esp at this point in time) and he is freaking out about not having a list of who all is going to be there. He trying to contact caterers and bartenders but he seems lost with it all and claims he needs approximate numbers (and he seems really stressed about it). Making the comment, "It's already March and I still don't have any approximate numbers...how am I supposed to plan this thing?"


Anyway, who all was invited to your rehearsal dinner besides immediate family and bridal party? Did you invite all your out of towners? Aunts/uncles? My guest list is about 155-160 with a 10-person bridal party.

21 Comments

Latest activity by rica, on March 6, 2018 at 10:13 PM
  • Anne
    Master April 2017
    Anne ·
    • Flag

    We just invited immediate family, wedding party (and spouses/SOs) and a couple out of town family members. It's really up to you if you want to keep it more intimate. I've been to out of town weddings where all of us OOT guests were invited, and those are fun too!

    • Reply
  • AllieB25
    Expert October 2018
    AllieB25 ·
    • Flag

    We are inviting immediate family (parents, siblings, grandparents), bridal party and SOs, and our officiant and his family (also FH's cousin, I wouldn't invite them if they were someone we didn't already know). We are having a party after with cocktails for our out of town guests, but there's no real need to do this.

    • Reply
  • Jamie
    Devoted August 2018
    Jamie ·
    • Flag
    Since my FIL's are hosting the rehearsal dinner, I let them decide. Bridal party and immediate family would about 10 ppl, they opted to include all siblings as well which puts it around 24ish people.
    • Reply
  • The Nuptials
    VIP July 2018
    The Nuptials ·
    • Flag

    We are having a welcome party with light bites and drinks (beer, wine, signature). The light bites aren't light at all but we don't want people to show up starving and clear out the bbq buffet which is catered from a local food truck. This will be at 7:30pm and is a cocktail reception format. Essentially everyone is invited to stop by, it's on our rooftop, which has a large lounge that holds 275 if it rains. Im actually in the middle of working on invitations now!

    • Reply
  • Going to the chapel
    Master July 2017
    Going to the chapel ·
    • Flag

    We included everyone in the wedding and their SOs, parents, grandparents and siblings/SOs. We both have several siblings and all our grands are alive, so we ended up with a pretty large group.

    • Reply
  • FutureMrsKC
    Master January 2019
    FutureMrsKC ·
    • Flag

    We are only inviting parents, siblings, grandparents, bridal party, bridal party plus ones (including the flower girl and ring bearer and their parents.)

    We are at 35 people. FH parents are also throwing our rehearsal dinner and I didn't want to invite all 60 OOT guests to the dinner which would change the cost greatly and we'd need a new venue to do it.

    We may plan to invite OOT guests to a local bar afterwards to meet us for a drink if we get the venue 100% set up and aren't at the rehearsal dinner too late.

    • Reply
  • Kelly
    Champion October 2018
    Kelly ·
    • Flag
    We are inviting everyone traveling from out of town on top of family and wedding party so currently planning around 150 people. Rented out a restaurant for four hours on Friday evening and doing food stations, passed appetizers, and open bar for 4 hours.
    • Reply
  • Kristina
    Master August 2018
    Kristina ·
    • Flag

    Ask him how much he'd like to pay, because that will dictate how many people you invite, since it sounds like you aren't overly concerned.

    Also ask them if who they would like there- do they want OOT guests? Are they leaving it completely up to you?

    Mine is just going to be anyone involved in the wedding itself, probably about 30 people including SOs. My FH's family isn't paying for it because they're actually paying for the Indian ceremony, so it's on us, and we want to keep it cheap-o lol.

    • Reply
  • Nemo
    Master August 2018
    Nemo ·
    • Flag

    We're including grandparents, wedding party, SO's, our parents and siblings. We're at 36 people.


    • Reply
  • MrsHanlon
    Devoted July 2018
    MrsHanlon ·
    • Flag
    We've invited immediate family, bridal party and their signficiant others, godparents, the officiant, one family flying in from out of town (coming to Boston from Indiana). So far we're at 45 guests so we opted out of a sit down plated dinner and went for a waterfront cocktail and appetizer party.
    • Reply
  • Bluey8616f
    Devoted August 2018
    Bluey8616f ·
    • Flag
    We invited immediate family, bridal party and SOs only. Wanted to keep it as small as possible.
    • Reply
  • Jennifer
    Master September 2018
    Jennifer ·
    • Flag

    We are inviting immediate family and our bridal party with their spouses/SO's. It's going to be around 50 people all together.

    • Reply
  • C
    Devoted November 2023
    Crystal ·
    • Flag
    Last time I only invited those directly in the wedding who would walk the aisle.
    • Reply
  • J
    Devoted June 2018
    Janie ·
    • Flag

    We're inviting the wedding party, parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles (some are out of town, so we just decided to include all of them), and 4 couples who are close family friends (one couple is hosting the wedding and reception at their home and one is playing music at the ceremony). We have around 45 people total.


    • Reply
  • MrsD
    Legend July 2019
    MrsD ·
    • Flag

    Most my guests are out of town, so I'm not inviting them to the RD. If I did, it would be 140 at the RD, and 160 at the wedding so it would be awkward for the 20 I'm leaving out. We are only inviting parents, siblings, and wedding party + SOs. But it just depends on your budget and what you want. After the RD, we are going to either a local bar or getting a bigger hotel room suite so OOTG can stop by and say hi the night before the wedding.

    • Reply
  • ET
    Devoted March 2018
    ET ·
    • Flag
    Ours is limited to immediate family and wedding party and their dates. Total of about 30 people. Think of it as a mini reception tbh - the first step is coming up with an ideal guest list and cutting as needed to suit your FIL’s budget.
    • Reply
  • Michelle
    VIP September 2018
    Michelle ·
    • Flag
    My wedding is in September and this whole invite to the shower and rehersal was my “to tackle” this week. The shower I could only have 50 and I tried to make that more of our friends. The rehersal was SO HARD! Because you’ve got all these people from out of town and family and your party and ugh! My head was spinning!! Finally I said enough is enough, the rehersal will be the people who are rehearsing. That totaled 45 people (including the ring bearer and flower girl(s) families) plus our immediate family members (if they aren’t in it). I gave that list to FH parents since they’re paying for it and the can add to it if they feel necessary.
    • Reply
  • Mrs. Fall Bride
    Master October 2016
    Mrs. Fall Bride ·
    • Flag

    We invited our parents, siblings + spouses, my grandmother (all other grandparents have passed), wedding party + spouses, and then all OOT guests, who were also all family, and we called it a welcome dinner instead of a rehearsal dinner. We had a total of 55 people, out of the 155 who RSVP'd yes to the wedding. We did not invite our officiants because we did not have an actual rehearsal, it was just the dinner.

    We had it in a restaurant, but didn't rent out the whole place, so we just told them the max number of people we were expecting to give them an idea, and they said it was fine to cut or add from that number as it got closer. They asked for a more final number about a week before, but then said they would only charge us based on the number of entrees actually ordered on that day, which was awesome. So I'd write out your list, and then tell your FIL that the number could change, but here's an estimate.

    • Reply
  • Colleen
    Super October 2017
    Colleen ·
    • Flag
    My in-laws did our rehearsal dinner too. All of my in-laws were from out of town and we had the wedding in my hometown, which is not where my husband and I live either. My mother in law did come to my bachelorette and my bridal shower for my family. My mom, aunt, and grandma all traveled to the shower that my husbands family had. My mother in law and my aunt bonded because they both have multiple boys, sons in Texas and so on. My mother in law invited that aunt and her family but not the rest of,my aunts and uncles from out of town. No one complained, there were too many out of towners. The must haves on the list are the bridal party, immediate family, and readers in the ceremony.
    On the othwr hand my cousin who moved to Texas is getting married in Texas this year. I was the first in our family to get married so we are all much more aware of etiquette. My mom told my aunt that we don't expect to come to the rehearsal dinner as we just went through all of that and we know everyone that is there for my cousin is traveling a significant distance. My aunt did say they will be having breakfast for the family the day after as a thank you but it isn't possible to host that many for a rehearsal.

    The real decision maker on out of town guests at the rehearsal should be made based on how many people are coming from out of town.
    • Reply
  • muriel
    Champion June 2018
    muriel ·
    • Flag

    I would prepare a list that includes everyone with a role in the wedding and their SO's or parents (in the case of flower girl or ring bearer), bride and groom, parents of each, siblings and SO's of each, grandparents if applicable, and officiant (who should be invited but will often decline unless they have a personal relationship with you) and their SO, if applicable.

    That would be the minimum number of people. Give the list to FIL's and ask if there is anyone they want to add. It is not necessary to include OOT's.


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