Kids At Your Wedding: Yay or Nay?

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flower girl in pink dress with hand over her eyes and surprised expression

Chicken or fish, band or DJ, church or outdoor ceremony…there are certain binary decisions that seem to stand the test of time when it comes to wedding planning. One of the perennial questions couples must ask themselves when crafting their guest list is whether or not they plan to invite children to their wedding. While it might seem like a fairly simple decision to breeze through on your to-do list (which you’re definitely using Zola’s Wedding Checklist tool to help you with, right?), the choice to have kids at your wedding or not is more tricky (and emotionally loaded) than you might initially think.

wedding party walking across grass with bride holding flower girl's hand

Photo Credit || Karin Nicole Photography

Will my friends with kids be offended that their minis weren’t invited? Will tiny tots steal the thunder from me and my partner? What about child relatives, such as nieces and nephews—can I include just them? Do I have to provide childcare if kids are invited (or, for out of town guests, if they aren’t)? Can I invite kids for just a portion of the evening, and then ask them to leave before the reception (so I don’t have to worry about kids’ meals and crushing tiny humans underfoot on the dance floor)?

As you can see, once you begin to peel back the layers of this choice, a lot of factors—and tough calls—lie waiting underneath. While we can’t make this decision for you, we’ve created this incredibly handy flowchart to help you navigate whether having kids at your wedding is the right call for you, your guests, and the vibe you’d like to create for this once-in-a-lifetime occasion.

Curious to know what other Zola couples are doing about the age-old “kids vs. no kids” question? Of course you are! To satisfy your curiosity, we polled our followers on social media to find out how Zola couples plan to handle this decision. We got a whopping 1600 responses within 24 hours(!), so clearly this topic is hot on everyone’s mind. Out of those responses, 63% of couples are having an adults-only wedding, leaving 37% of couples to throw the all-ages event of their dreams.

So, what do you think? How do you plan to handle children when it comes to crafting your guest list? Leave your thoughts in the comments below letting us know if you plant to have kids at your wedding, or whether you’re planning to politely ask parents to party solo.

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