It’s that time in the planning process… making the guest list! Writing up a wedding guest list can be a challenge. Trust us, we get it! Of course, you want everyone to join in and celebrate your fairy tale day, but there are a few things to keep in mind as you determine who lands that special invite! Unsure of where exactly to begin? Below, check out these eight tips for your ultimate guide to wedding guest list etiquette:

1. Picture Your Wedding Vision and Budget

If you haven’t already, first you’ll want to envision what you hope your dream wedding will look like in the first place! Do you want a more intimate ceremony with just close family and friends? Will your distant family members make the cut? How about your co-workers? Is your wedding local or destination? The questions could go on and on, and all has to do with wedding guest list etiquette! Sit down with your partner to determine what you are both picturing for the big day and how much you are willing to spend.

2. Keep Your Venue in Mind

Next, you’ll want to communicate with the professionals at your wedding venue to bring your dream list to life. Can they accommodate that large list of yours? The size and spacing limit will dictate how many people you can invite and seat comfortably.

3. Kids or No Kids?

Although we all love the adorable little kiddos, many couples choose to make their wedding adult-only! If you do decide to invite kids, be sure to factor them into your final count and stick to your word when letting guests know they can bring them along.

4. About That Plus-One…

Don’t worry, there is no wedding rule out there that says that you HAVE to allow guests to bring a plus-one date! If you are attempting to reduce that number count on your list, this could be a smart move for you. On the other hand, this works both ways and could add to your list to increase numbers! The more, the merrier, right?

5. Break Down Into Groups

Category time! Yes, color coding is highly encouraged here.  Start by categorizing your list by your family, your partner’s family, co-workers, school friends, etc. Mapping out this visual guide for yourself will help you stay organized and hopefully will avoid leaving anyone out that you may have otherwise missed!

6. Stick To Your Maximum Number

You know what that means, no last-minute adds! Keep your parents in the loop and well-informed that your list is finalized. Also, the sooner you can fill your wedding venue in on the exact guest count, the better!

7. Don’t Forget to Include Yourself!

Oops! Obviously, you two are the stars of the show here! Make sure you include a +2 for the bride and groom on that final list you send over to your venue.

Above all, everyone on your list is in attendance to celebrate your true love. Remember that this is your day to shine, and you can invite whoever you want to join in on the fun with you. Happy list-making!