I often get this question whenever a couple has asked me to create their rehearsal dinner invitations. I usually tell them, “It’s your rehearsal dinner. So ultimately, it’s up to you.” However, the Emily Post blog, Etiquette Daily, explains it much better than I!
Q: In general, what is the rule of thumb when extending invitations to a rehearsal dinner prior to a wedding?
A: We assume you mean who should be invited to the rehearsal dinner. If this is the case, guests at the rehearsal dinner include parents and grandparents of the bride and groom, siblings of the bride and groom, members of the wedding party, the officiant, and the spouses/fiances/fiancees/significant others of each of those guests. There is no reason to invite out of town guests unless space and finances permit and you desire to invite them – the rehearsal dinner is really the time for immediate family members and members of the bridal party to share special moments before the flurry of the wedding. Making the guest list too big detracts from this closeness. There is no need to invite a date for any single persons – but it is expected that significant others be invited. It also can be difficult to include aunts, uncles, cousins, etc. because there can be a huge number of them. It is up to you whether godparents or a very close aunt and uncle are invited.