In 2018, the average wedding typically set couples and their family members back about $44,000, according to the Brides American Wedding Study, which surveyed more than 800 brides and spouses-to-be.

The study also discovered that most weddings had less than 200 guests, with an average of 167.

And even though most of the people who confirm their attendance usually show up, some don’t.

According to HuffPost writer Philip Lewis, one couple recently came up with an unorthodox plan to address all the no-shows for their wedding reception.

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In order to get a better understanding of why a couple might send their no-shows an invoice, we contacted Michelle Lew, the owner of Lavender Crown Events, a wedding planning company servicing San Jose, Silicon Valley, and the surrounding areas.

Firstly, let’s talk about guest lists. Lew told Bored Panda that they are usually determined by three categories: (1) family, (2) friends, (3) coworkers. “Even more, each category is often divided into rankings of A, B, and C lists,” Lew added. “A list guests are must-haves — parents, close aunts, uncles, cousins, and best friends — the people that are the most influential in the couple’s lives. B lists are often those that may be offended if not given an invitation, such as extended family or that one close friend from college you only text a few times a year. C list guests are more for coworkers you don’t know very well or perhaps a parent’s friend that you haven’t seen since you were a child. Ranking these lists also helps with reducing guest counts for those looking for a more intimate wedding or a venue with limited capacity.”

Usually, Michelle Lew said, no-show guests are part of the C-list group who RSVP’ed but weren’t close enough to the couple to actually mark their calendars. She said it’s rare but it does happen. “Oftentimes, no-show guests with no advance notice are usually only one or two persons per hundred guests. In most cases, as the date arrives, caterers and venues will need the final guest count a week in advance. There are always emergencies that can cause a no-show after the one-week date, like an illness or medical emergency. However, it’s common for the non-attending guest to at least let the couple know!” Lew explained.

Not all types of weddings have the same amount of no-shows. For example, if someone is throwing theirs abroad, people may feel more inclined to plan their trip diligently. As Lisa Burton, aka The Bridal Consultant, plans destination weddings, she’s happy that when guests accept an invite, they mostly turn up. And if they don’t, it’s usually due to a ‘fall out.’

“‘Surprise’ guests are often more of a problem for our couples, those guests who show up abroad a few days before the wedding for dramatic effect, and although the reasoning is often quite lovely, it can be a huge hassle for the couple, considering last-minute food/drink orders, table plans, and transport,” Burton told Bored Panda.

“I’ve had a few couples that have found this incredibly stressful to arrange when they should be relaxing and preparing for their big day.”

The internet is having mixed opinions about this. Some are laughing at the document

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Interestingly, the before-mentioned study found that in 2018, just 27 percent of couples said they’d fully paid for their wedding, while 42 percent handed off that responsibility to their parents. Overall, just 58 percent of those surveyed contributed to their own nuptials.

So even though weddings (before the pandemic) were getting more expensive on average, the couples seemed to no longer be able or willing to pay for themselves. All the more reason for the guests to notify them if they’re not coming; I’m not saying the no-shows deserve an invoice. Just that a little empathy from both sides would go a long way.

“While no-show guests can be annoying — especially after so much money has been paid per seat — an empty seat is usually the least of the couple’s concerns,” Michelle Lew said. “While some money is lost, there are worse situations that could happen! Most couples understand that last-minute priorities can change, especially for guests that aren’t close to the bride or groom. They will still have their immediate family and best friends with them.”

The wedding planner reminded that should a person or two no-show, the same amount of food and drinks will still be available so that someone else can get an extra serving. “If the couple is upset about the no-show, it’s always best to remind them of all the rest of the guests who are present and all the parts of the wedding going right!” Lew said.

While others are defending the couple, saying the guest are in the wrong

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