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Expect This Many People to RSVP "No" to Your Wedding

Here's how to plan ahead—as much as possible.
The Knot
Updated May 26, 2020
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There's no magical formula to determine exactly how many invitees will RSVP "no" (trust us, if we could predict the future for you, we would), but it's safe to plan for roughly 15 percent of people to decline the invitation (and more like 20–30 percent for a destination wedding).

Okay, good to know—now what? Knowing the potential number of "nos" you'll receive will give you a rough sense of the final headcount. It'll also help determine if you should draft a B list (a list of guests you'd love to invite, but aren't sure you have room for yet) and if you'll need to order extra invitations for it. Our advice? Create your A list and B list at the same time and order all the invitations in bulk to save yourself time and money.

Once RSVPs start rolling in, you'll know if there's space to mail your round-two invitations. Invite your B-list crew as soon as you can to give them enough time to book travel and hotels. Also, the later you send additional invites, the more obvious it'll be they weren't on the initial list, so consider sending out your A-list invites a little earlier than usual. (Psst—here's what to do if you're still waiting on RSVPs.)

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