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AIBU - evening guests at a wedding

(162 Posts)
LoveInTokyo Sat 26-May-18 09:07:14

Is it just me or does anyone else think the concept of having some evening only guests at a wedding is just inherently a bit offensive?

To me it comes across like, “you’re alright but you’re only a second tier friend so we don’t like you enough to actually pay for a meal for you, so please travel a long way and spend a lot of money to attend a bad disco and probably pay for all your own drinks and bring a present”?

If I got an evening only invitation then I would probably politely decline.

Yesiamhappy Sat 26-May-18 09:13:26

We had evening guests - not many - they were mainly for parents friends / locals that we didn’t know but parents wanted to invite. We had limited seating during the day so couldn’t invite them to the full day. We did provide an evening buffet for everyone

LifeBeginsAtGin Sat 26-May-18 09:14:32

Yes, it is for those who aren't immediate friends and family. I thought it's always been this way.

Oh dear, have you received an evening invite but thought you should have a full day ticket

Sometimes you can't get 100 in a tiny church or can't afford 100 x 3 course meals.

Louislovesmud Sat 26-May-18 09:14:35

I've been an evening invite once, and didn't take it as an affront. The bride has a HUGE family, and we were workmates who are fairly close.

I've known evening invites to be used for younger cousins who would likely only prefer the "party" bit after as well.

Wouldn't be my choice, but I can see why a couple might have them.

DrunkOnCalpol Sat 26-May-18 09:16:30

Can you honestly say you love everyone in your life equally? You don't have some people who are vital to your life and some people who you just enjoy hanging out with? The only problem I can see if if someone you see as one of your best friends only invites you to the evening part. I've been invited to various evening receptions and really don't see a problem.

LoveInTokyo Sat 26-May-18 09:16:51

No, I haven’t received an evening only invitation, LifeBegins. But I’m on my way to a wedding right now where it is costing us a lot of money to get there and stay over in a hotel and I just don’t understand why anyone would go to this much effort for a couple who only invited you for a couple of hours after dinner or expect anyone to do the same for you.

thinking3333 Sat 26-May-18 09:19:59

Yes I think so. I can imagine it's okay inviting evening only guests if they are local/casual acquaintances. But to expect people to travel a long way is rude.

We went to the evening do at a wedding a few years ago. There was barely any food in the buffet, we had to pay for our own drinks and it was generally quite miserable as it was in a barn and passing it down. We also gave the couple a £40 gift token.

In future I'll probably only go if it's local.

Returnofthesmileybar Sat 26-May-18 09:21:52

Not at all, evening invites are issued to people for lots of different reasons - people you know and like but aren't close enough to invite to the full thing, parents friends, work colleagues who you like as colleagues but wouldn't be friends out of work, maybe cousins if your not particularly close. There is nothing at all wrong with an evening invite, it's an invite, you don't have to go or travel any distance, some people are just easily offended honestly

burnoutbabe Sat 26-May-18 09:22:06

Agreed I'd now only go if local to us. And expect to pay for own drinks and no food.
Anything further and I'd probably just decline nicely. I have zero desire to shout at people over a too loud disco!

BillywilliamV Sat 26-May-18 09:22:38

Im going 300 miles for an evening reception, any excuse for a party!

blitzen Sat 26-May-18 09:23:45

Absolutely with you on this one, LoveinTokyo! I would rather not go at all. I was once at a wedding as a day guest and evening guests started to arrive during the meal as it had gone on. It was cringe. For my own wedding, our guests were all the same for day and night. I actually also know someone who received an evening only invitation and ended up going to the day as they hadn't read it properly!

MargaretCavendish Sat 26-May-18 09:24:54

I don't like it either, I didn't do it and I think it's weird (you'd never do it for any other sort of party - imagine throwing a dinner party and then inviting an extra tier of people round just for the coffee!). But, as I've discovered before on Mumsnet, this is a deeply controversial position to hold, and you'll get a lot of people telling you you're a narcissist who expects to be everybody's best friend.

LoveInTokyo Sat 26-May-18 09:24:59

Im going 300 miles for an evening reception, any excuse for a party!


divadee Sat 26-May-18 09:25:34

I have a rule that I only go to local evening do only invites now. I have had times where I have travelled and paid for a hotel etc.... and it's cost a fortune and haven't even been fed as an evening guest.

At least if it's local I can go home and it hasn't cost me a lot if money.

Dyrne Sat 26-May-18 09:25:55

What would you suggest though OP? Most venues don’t cater for sit down meals for 100 people. Evening invites mean you can invite more people. What’s wrong with saying to someone “I love you and want to share in our special day, please come along in the evening to dance, sing, laugh and celebrate with us”. Or would you rather not be invited at all?

Caspiana Sat 26-May-18 09:25:56

I don’t like evening invitations where they are a ‘consolation prize’ for those who missed the cut for the day invitations. I don’t take offence at it as such (people need to chill out about other people’s weddings in my opinion) but I wouldn’t race to go unless it was local.

However for parents friends or work colleagues who wouldn’t ever expect a day invitation I think it’s ok. Our parents invited some of their friends to our wedding evening. They were the only evening guests, but to be fair it was local and we had proper evening food and a free bar so I like to hope none of them were offended.

LoveInTokyo Sat 26-May-18 09:29:56

But, as I've discovered before on Mumsnet, this is a deeply controversial position to hold, and you'll get a lot of people telling you you're a narcissist who expects to be everybody's best friend.


I have only been to weddings of people I consider close friends and that’s fine by me. Putting on a wedding is expensive and going to a wedding is an expensive ballache, so IMO it’s best for all concerned if you just invite people who are actually your good friends.

SexyManatee Sat 26-May-18 09:29:57

I think it works well for work colleagues, your weekend netball league friends etc.

If you've got the venue capacity and do also have "acquaintance friends" who it might be a nice gesture to invite but you (and they) wouldn't be that fussed if they didn't come, I don't see why not.

wictional Sat 26-May-18 09:31:27

I’m an evening guest in October and have outright been told it’s only close friends and family during the day. This means some of our shared friends are going to the day and also the “more intimate” hen as well as the one I’m invited to.

Yes, it’s kind of galling to know that the bride outright prefers some of our friends over me... but I also realise that she is in fact closer to them, and that it’s her wedding, her choice. That’s just how it goes.

Snowdonia Sat 26-May-18 09:33:07

Our evening guests were near enough all work colleagues. They couldn't all have the day off but we definitely wanted them there. The evening was the only option and they were glad they could still come after work

MissCherryCakeyBun Sat 26-May-18 09:34:46

This is not to the OP but to all the moaners after......How about only going if you want to spend time with friends and/or family celebrating a wedding? How about not bitching about how much it all costs ? If you don't want to spend the money don't go! All the bollocks about "obliged to attend" your not the bride or groom and they are the only 2 obliged to attend. Just say no and do something else hmm

heroineinahalfshell Sat 26-May-18 09:35:50

We had evening guests - all local so no travel involved for them, and mainly work colleagues or parents friends as we couldn't afford more than 75 day guests. We also ended up inviting a "new" group of local friends to the evening do - we hadn't been close at the time we planned/sent invites, but by the time of the wedding we knew them better and didn't want them left out. 3 yrs down the line, they're our core group of friends and I really regret they weren't at the whole day!

VileyRose Sat 26-May-18 09:36:21

Everyone at our wedding came to the reception. No extras just for the evening as I agree seems pointless.

Ginger1982 Sat 26-May-18 09:38:40

We had 160 day guests and another 60 at night. Didn't think anything of it. Have also been invited at night to many weddings and gone without a second thought.

MaryShelley1818 Sat 26-May-18 09:39:05

There is no way we could afford to invite everyone during the day, I’m on Maternity Leave currently with a 5mth old baby and we’re planning to Ttc again in the New Year.
We have enough saved funds to have a small celebration with only 30 guests during the day (almost all of which are family plus a few close friends) and then a further 40-50 on the evening.
I’d love to have everyone there all day but won’t either go into debt for it, or put off getting married for a few years to save. I would hope all of my friends would understand this and would be very upset if someone flounced off in a huff refusing to come just because we couldn’t afford a bigger do.
Thankfully I genuinely don’t think we know anyone who’d do that.

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