Your wedding is a once-in-a-lifetime event where you get to throw a fabulous party to celebrate a new union among friends and family. It’s the perfect time to honor and show off your romance with your partner, and although it's your day, you have a responsibility to create an enjoyable and comfortable atmosphere for your guests. There are many traditions that should be followed.

When should I send out save-the-dates and wedding invitations?

Ideally, you should send out save-the-dates at least a year or so before the wedding. Give everyone enough time to take off and make the proper accommodations needed to attend your wedding. Invitations can go out about 3 to 4 months before the wedding. Just make sure that everyone has enough time to RVSP.

Girl wrapping wedding invitation using a ribbon Irina Lev / Getty Images


Do I send out an invite even if I know that person can’t attend?

Even if you know someone you love won’t be able to share the special day with you, it’s considered an honor and good etiquette to send them an invite anyways. It’s a sign that you adore them and want them to be there. They’ll appreciate it and might even use it as a memento of your special day.

Sad lady sitting down with a suitcase Deagreez / Getty Images


Who do I need to give a plus one to?

Weddings are expensive, so you don't have to give everyone a plus one. However, the proper etiquette is to invite the partner of those who are married or in a long-term relationship. You can extend a plus-one invitation to single guests as it could make them feel more comfortable at the wedding; however, it's not required.

Regardless of what you choose to do, be specific and strict. For example, if only married couples can bring their partner, stick to that no matter what. Don't make any exceptions. When you send out your invitations, be clear who you'd like to attend by adding both names to the invitation.

Happy woman guest embracing and congratulation beautiful bride at rustic cottage wedding in Europe wundervisuals / Getty Images


Who pays for what?

Back in the day, the bride's family was responsible for paying for everything because women were considered financial burdens that were passed from one family to another. Nowadays, it doesn't matter! It really depends on how the bride and the groom feel about the situation and their financial circumstances. It's completely okay for one side to pay for everything, and it is also okay for both parties to split payment however they see fit.

Female trying on wedding gown with women assistant in bridal wear shop. Smiling woman wearing her bridal dress with wedding dress designer in bridal fashion boutique. jacoblund / Getty Images


Can we disinvite someone?

Although you technically can do this, it’s considered poor etiquette, so you should try to avoid doing so if it’s possible. We suggest that you simply don't spend time with them at your wedding, and with so many guests, it's really easy to avoid people you don't want to see.

If you really can’t stand to see their faces, then the proper etiquette is to tell them in person or through a phone call that you think they shouldn’t attend. If you do this, prepare for your friendship to end.

Young women talking while sitting on sand. Female friends are lost in desert during hiking. They are wearing casuals. izusek / Getty Images


Do I have to invite a couple that invited me to their wedding?

There isn’t any silent pact that says that you have to invite a couple that invited you to their wedding. The rule of thumb is to consider inviting couples that were married within recent years. However, if you attended their wedding more than a decade ago and you're not close with them anymore, you shouldn't worry too much.

Bride and groom celebrating on their wedding day kkshepel / Getty Images


Can we include registry information in the invitation?

This is a hard no. While your guests will likely bring wedding presents, you don't want to pressure them or make it seem like giving a gift is a requirement for attending the wedding. Keep the invitation simple, and provide information about a registry at a later time or occasion.

Several gifts wrapped and on a table.


Can I ask for cash?

It’s considered poor form to ask outright for cash. While you can suggest it, asking for cash outright can offend some people. We highly recommend that you just put out the word quietly that you'd prefer cash because you're saving for a particular thing. You could further encourage cash by providing a very minimal registry.

White wedding envelope with a boutonniere in the hand of a woman.


Do I have to serve liquor at my wedding?

If you’re firmly against alcohol, you do not have to serve liquor at your wedding. This is more of a tradition rather than etiquette, so you don’t have to serve booze. You can always offer some type of alcohol ticket instead of a full bar, or you can opt out of it entirely. You should do whatever you’re most comfortable with. Your guests already love you and won’t hold the fact that there’s no alcohol at the wedding against you.

People toasting champagne at a wedding with the bride and groom Neustockimages / Getty Images


Can I ask guests not to take photos?

Almost everyone is glued to their phones nowadays, and it's easy for a guest to ruin a wedding photo if their phone is out. Don't be shy and let your guests know that you'd prefer to leave the photography to the professionals. Consider setting up a sign at the entrance that lets your guests know about your preferences. While it can be hard to enforce this, it is always okay to ask.

Person taking a photo at a party with their own phone alvarez / Getty Images


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