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Proper Etiquette to Not Invite Children to Events

Sometimes we just want to throw an adult only event, especially weddings. Parents have two options: they could be positive and thankful for a fun night out or become offended thinking you don’t like their kids. More often than not, parents are excited for a kid-free opportunity and more than willing to accommodate your request. However, we understand it can be awkward and uncomfortable asking parents not to bring their children to an event hosted by you. Below we give a few suggestions on how to nicely explain to your guests this is not a kid-friendly affair.

1. Explicitly State on the Invitations- On the invitations it is important to clearly state adults only are invited. This can be displayed in bold, underlined or different color font. The wording on the invitations depends on the event. For casual events such a birthday parties and barbecues, you can state “Adult Only” on the bottom of the invitation. However, for more formal events such as weddings you can write, “Adult Reception to Follow”, or place on your reply card ___ No. of Adults. Another option is to address the envelope only to the adults you’re inviting.

2. Call Parents Directly- The earlier the better! Parents are planners and if they are told in advance this is a no kid event, they are more than likely to be supportive. Plus, they have more time in advance to contact babysitters and figure out the logistics of the evening.

3. Provide Child Care- If you only have a few friends and family with children, offer to provide child care during the event. Find somebody you trust to watch the children throughout your event. The parents will be extremely grateful and know you just won Friend of the Year award!

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