Tuesday, April 3, 2007

The Cost of a Guest

How much does it cost to invite a guest to your wedding? If you haven’t thought about it, now is a good time to do so. Here are some categories to think about and a ballpark figure to do some preliminary calculations.
  • Caterer $45

  • Alcohol $25

  • Cake $7

  • Stationary $5

  • Rentals $16 (Chair $8, Table $1, Linens $2, Place Setting $5)

  • Centerpiece $8 (Flowers, Candles, etc.)

  • Favors $4

  • Shuttle Service $2

  • Staff $6
All totaled up that’s almost $120 per wedding guest! Which means that the cost for inviting your cousin, his wife and their two kids to your wedding is fast approaching $500 – and the kids probably won’t even eat the food, let alone like it!

Parents who are footing the bill for a wedding are notorious for adding long lost relatives to the guest list and then grumbling that the budget has ‘mysteriously’ increased since the last time they were consulted. In reality, there’s nothing mysterious about it at all: E=MC squared and MG=M$ (More Guests = More Money).

Perhaps you should think of your guest list as an investment, sure invite the rich uncle who doesn’t know what to do with his money, but you might want to think twice before you invite that broke cousin who gave your sister the pastel green candy dish… or was that a single martini glass? I guess the ambiguity is part of the charm.