Should I invite children?

The behaviour of children at wedding receptions is usually a reflection on their parents.

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While some children are well behaved, others are not and can cause significant distractions at very inappropriate times.

They can be extremely cute one minute and little terrors the next.

So while we would never say you should not invite children, here are some tips:

  1. Try to have parents arrange for very young children to be taken home and minded after the ceremony.  Wedding receptions are long and children can be very ‘crabby’ later in the reception when they get tired.
  2. Make sure your venue has areas where babies can be changed and fed.  You also need to check they have enough space for prams and highchairs.
  3. If you do want to have children at the reception our strong advice is to provide them with lots of distractions.  You may put together a showbag with colouring in books and pens, maybe some simple games, movies loaded onto iPads and possibly a few lollies (but not too much sugar!).  The key though is not to give them everything at once.  Rather, try to spread it out throughout the reception.
  4. The venue should assist by feeding the children as early as possible.
  5. Considering hiring an external company to care for the children so the parents can enjoy themselves too!  The Event Nannies are amazing at what they do and specialise in caring for children at events.
  6. Some venues with accommodation should also be able to help you arrange childminding.

Finally, just remember to be clear on your invitations in relation to whether or not children are invited, and remember the potential difficulties if you allow some to attend but not others. A blanket rule for all one way or the other may be necessary.