How to Scale a Traditional Wedding Guest List for an Elopement


Listen Here:


If there’s one good thing that came from our bout with COVID this past year, it’s that we all learned that bigger does not always mean better. If you’re considering nixing the big ceremony in favor of a smaller, more intimate day, then you’re in the right place. Here are a few things to consider when dialing back the size. 

The Family

First and foremost, the guest list. Everyone has favorite family members and not-so-favorite family members. Consider those who you actually talk to and see on a regular basis.

If you wouldn’t be sad that they didn’t see your ceremony, cross them off the list. Sometimes family isn’t always blood. If you have close friends who are more like family than a few of your actual cousins, make sure to add them to the list. A good rule of thumb is if you’d be excited to go to their wedding, they’ll likely feel the same about yours. If you’d dread going to their wedding and try to find an excuse out of it, again, there is your answer. 

Extended Family

If you’re worried about regretting the smaller guest list, you can always opt to have a larger reception or post-nuptial celebration on a different day. That way you still get to ring in the new marriage with your extended circle. (No pun intended!) 

The Kiddos

An easy way to cut the list down further is to make an “adults-only” rule. While you love your little nieces and nephews, it can be stressful for parents to make sure their kiddos are behaving, and this distraction will take the focus away from the ceremony. To ease the chaos and cut down the list, kindly request everyone to leave the tiny humans at home. While you’re at it, ask your guests to come solo rather than bringing a plus one. It ensures you don’t end up with someone’s random Tinder date in your photos, while keeping the guest list small. 

Once you’ve got the tough decisions made, you’re well on your way to a beautiful and intimate elopement. Finalize the logistical details and don’t forget to soak it all in. An elopement isn’t any less magical than a big wedding, so enjoy every moment!


Hey there! My name is Kelsey, but my friends call me Kels. 

I am passionate about emotion – love, deep connection, + happiness inspire me… endlessly

 If you’re ready for  the coolest adventures, couples, and some real life tips, tools, and strategies… you’re in the right place.



Share this post