Weddings are a time for love, laughter, and celebrating the happy couple – but they can also be a bit of a minefield when it comes to plus ones.
Can I bring a plus one to a wedding?
You can only bring a plus one to a wedding if the bride and groom give you their permission. If you did not receive a clear and direct plus one notice on your wedding invitation, you do not have permission. If you are close to the wedding couple, you can politely ask them if you can bring someone.
In this guide, we’re going to explore the etiquette around plus ones, offer some tips, and (hopefully) help you avoid any wedding drama.
Can I Bring a Plus One to a Wedding? (Answered for 5 Situations)
Weddings are almost always more fun with a date.
But before you invite a plus one, there are a few things you need to keep in mind. Like, for instance, who you can invite, the timing, and the size of the celebration.
Can I Bring a Friend as a Plus One to a Wedding?
According to traditional wedding etiquette, the answer is no.
Traditionally, you only get a plus one if you are in a serious relationship – meaning long-term dating, engagement, or marriage.
However, it really depends on who is getting married and their wedding guest list.
If the couple is okay with it, then sure, bring a plus one. But if they’re not, then don’t push it because it’ll only make things awkward for everyone involved.
Let’s say the bride and groom are good friends of yours and you know they’re okay with you bringing a plus one.
In that case, go ahead and invite your friend (or significant other) to the wedding.
They’ll appreciate being included and you’ll have someone to dance with during the reception. Just make sure that your plus one knows they’re not obligated to buy a gift for the happy couple.
That’s your job.
On the other hand, if you don’t know the bride and groom well or you’re not sure if they’re okay with plus ones, it’s probably best to just attend solo.
The last thing you want to do is show up with a date and cause discomfort or drama on such an important day.
Can I Bring a New Boyfriend/Girlfriend as a Plus One to a Wedding?
You’ve been dating them for two weeks and suddenly you’re getting Plus One invites to a wedding.
You’re not sure if it’s a good idea to bring them, but you don’t want to go stag (or alone, for the non-initiated). The short answer is no, don’t do it.
However, here’s a quick pro/con list to help you make your decision:
PROS: They might be good company, you’ll have someone to dance with, and it’ll be fun!
CONS: You don’t know them that well, they might start drama and ruin the wedding, and the bride/groom/family might not approve.
Picture this: it’s your best friend’s wedding day.
You’re standing up front, next to the wedding couple who are about to say their vows. And then, out of nowhere, your new boyfriend/girlfriend decides to start a fight.
They run down the aisle, screaming for you to come with them, and all heck breaks loose.
The flower girl starts crying, the ring bearer tries to make a break for it, and the bride’s mother faints on the spot. It’s a total disaster, and it’s all thanks to your new plus one.
That’s an extreme example, but you get the point.
If you’re really struggling to make a decision, here’s a flowchart that should help:
- Do you really like this person? –> If yes, go to the next question. If no, don’t bring them.
- Are you reasonably certain they won’t start drama and embarrass you? –> If yes, go to the next question. If no, don’t bring them.
- Do you think the bride/groom/family will approve? –> If yes, still ask if you can bring them. If no, maybe consider not bringing them after all.
At the end of the day, it’s your call.
But if you really can’t decide, maybe just play it safe and don’t bring the new bae to the wedding.
After all, weddings are supposed to be about family and close friends – not random new love interests.
Plus, do you really want your new flame in all those family photos? Probably not. It might not work out and then their face is still there in the images forever.
Can I Bring My BFF as a Plus One to a Wedding?
No, a plus one is usually meant for a significant other or a date, not a friend.
Unless you want to check with the bride and groom and see if it’s okay with them. In which case, go ahead. Just know that it’s not really standard protocol.
The last thing you want is to cause any drama or distraction on their big day.
Don’t be surprised if the wedding couple prefers you to bring a date or come alone.
Can I Bring a Last Minute Plus One to a Wedding?
In most cases, I would avoid bringing a last-minute plus one to a wedding.
If you’ve ever been to a wedding, you know that they can be pretty pricey affairs.
From the cost of the venue to the catering bills, there’s a lot that goes into making sure that everything runs smoothly on the big day.
So, it’s understandable that couples would want to keep a close eye on their guest list – after all, every extra person means more money out of their pocket.
However, life happens and sometimes people have to cancel at the last minute.
In these cases, it’s perfectly reasonable to ask if you can bring a plus one.
After all, the bride and groom may have had someone else drop out and your plus one could take their place.
Just be sure to get explicit permission from the couple before showing up with an unannounced guest.
They’ll appreciate the heads up and it will help them avoid any unnecessary day-of stress.
Can I Bring a Plus One to a Small Wedding?
For a smaller or micro wedding, it’s even more important to reach out to the wedding couple for approval.
Small weddings usually mean a small budget and a small guest list.
One of the main reasons couples have small weddings is because they want to save money. If you’re planning on bringing a guest, make sure you’re prepared to cover the cost of their food, drink, and transportation.
Another reason couples opt for small weddings is that they want to keep their guest list intimate.
If you’re planning on bringing a plus one, make sure you won’t be putting the couple over their limit.
Ultimately, if the couple is open to the idea of you inviting a plus one, then great.
But if they’re not, then it’s probably best to respect their wishes and attend the wedding solo.
Should I Bring a Plus One to a Wedding?
If the bride and groom have extended an invitation to you and a guest, and you are in a serious relationship, it makes sense to bring them to the wedding.
On the other hand, if the invitation is addressed only to you, it’s possible that the couple is trying to keep their guest list small and intimate.
In that case, you should not bring a plus one.
Here is a list of reasons to bring a guest to a wedding:
- You’ll have someone to dance with all night long
- They’ll be there to take pictures with you
- It can be nice to have someone to talk to during the reception
- To have someone to dance with at the reception
- To avoid being the only single person at the wedding
- To have someone to help you remember all of the details of the wedding day
- They can keep you from getting too emotional during the ceremony
- They can help you navigate the complicated family dynamics at a wedding
Now, check out this list of reasons not to bring a plus one:
- You don’t have to share your food or drinks with anyone
- Avoid potential drama and conflict
- You might meet someone new
- You can take advantage of the single line for the buffet
- You can leave whenever you want without feeling guilty
- You can focus on enjoying the wedding and catching up with friends
- You don’t have to worry about what your date is doing or whether they’re having a good time
- You don’t have to deal with any awkwardness if things don’t work out with your date after the wedding
Here is a good video about whether or not you should bring a plus one to a wedding:
Is It Rude To Ask To Bring a Plus One to a Wedding?
If you’re close friends with the bride and groom, then it’s probably no big deal to ask if you can bring a date.
But if you’re not as close to them, or if you don’t know them that well, then asking to bring a plus one might be considered rude.
There are a few things that can determine if asking to bring a plus one is rude.
- Your reason for asking
- The timing of the request
- Who you want to bring
First, the reason for the request.
If you have a valid reason for wanting to bring a date (e.g., you’re in a long-term relationship and don’t want to attend the wedding alone), then it’s less likely to be seen as rude.
Second, the timing of the request.
Asking last minute is more likely to be considered rude than asking ahead of time.
And finally, the person you want to bring. If you’re considering bringing someone who the bride and groom don’t know (or don’t know well), that’s more likely to be seen as rude than bringing someone they do know.
The best thing to do is just use your best judgment in each individual case.
How To Ask to Bring a Plus One to a Wedding?
If you’re going to ask to bring a plus one to a wedding, here is how to do it.
Here are some phrases and sentences you can use to ask the question:
- I hope this doesn’t cause any inconvenience but may I please bring my plus one?
- It would mean the world to me if I could bring my plus one.
- I completely understand if the answer is no, but would it be possible for me to include a guest?
- Is there any possibility that I could bring my date/friend/partner?
- Would there happen to be any wiggle room when it comes the number of guests?
- If it’s at all possible, may I please include a guest in my RSVP?
- Would it possible for me invite somebody?
- Do you think there might possibly be any room for someone else?
- Is there the teensiest weensiest chance that there might an exception made for me and my plus one?
- I’m so sorry to bother you, but I was wondering if I could bring a plus one to the wedding?
- I know you’re probably very busy with wedding planning, but I wanted to check to see if it would be okay to bring a plus one.
- I understand if you can’t accommodate an additional guest, but I thought I would ask anyway.
- Would it be possible to bring a plus one to the wedding? I completely understand if the answer is no.
- Thank you so much for inviting me to your wedding. I was wondering if I might be able to bring a date?
- I understand that you may not be able to accommodate everyone’s plus ones, but I would really appreciate it if I could bring mine. Would that be possible?
- I know you’re trying to keep the guest list small, but I promise my plus one will not be any trouble. Would it be possible for me to include them?
Final Thoughts: Can I Bring a Plus One to a Wedding?
At the end of the day, check your wedding invitation and check in with the bride and groom.
If you do that, you really can’t go wrong.
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