Although Robert Eberhardt and his bride
had a guest list of 80 guests they wanted to invite to their reception, the hall they wanted had a 100-person minimum. So they invited more people, which started them down the path to a massive cost overrun. "The logic at the time was we were paying for 20 more people that we planned on inviting anyway by going with that hall," Eberhardt says, "so we invited the extra 20 people. But then those people brought dates, and other people insisted their friends also be invited. It was a mess." Additional dinners and subsequent no-shows cost them an extra $1,200. "We would have been better off just paying for the 20 plates, and not inviting everyone else, or going with a different place," he said.
(Sad story: He was still paying off the credit card debt
from the wedding after the marriage ended 16 months later.)
What to do:
To keep the costs of the reception
in line, find a space suited to the size of the reception, and learn to say no to extra guests.