How do you tell guests not to bring extra people to the wedding?

QuestionTo prevent guests from bringing extra people to the wedding, such as their children or a date, I’ve been told to include a special note in the invitations to remind them not to do so. Is it proper to include this request in the wedding invitation and how would it be worded?

AnswerAh, the everlasting question about invitations and how to make sure only the people on the invitation come to the wedding.

As a general rule, if your name appears on the wedding invitation, then you are invited. Since there are gray areas in terms of proper wedding etiquette for the use of such phrases as “Adults only” and other variations to make sure people don’t bring uninvited guests, it is best to refrain from including that little note. Some of your wedding guests may find it inappropriate.

Enlist the help of close family and friends to spread the news that you are having an ‘intimate wedding for close family and friends only’ or it’s “it’s going to be a great adult only affair”.

Another way to ensure wedding guests don’t bring unwanted members is to have the RSVP card with the maximum number of guests allowed stated clearly (e.g. If you are inviting Jane and Jack, their RSVP card would say 2). It may be a bit more work, but it would be less invasive.

For those wedding guests that you think may invite everyone under the sun, you can include a little personal note on their RSVP card (e.g. “We really hope you enjoy the night alone with us while little Ben stays home).