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Escort cards are a very helpful addition to a reception. If you have ever attended a wedding and were unsure of where to sit, you know firsthand how the omission of these elements can impact the organized flow of the evening. Once you design affordable escort cards, you can continue on with your wedding planning with added peace of mind.

Escort versus place cards
Escort cards are often placed near the entrance of the reception venue, or on a table in the cocktail hour space. Some of these cards have the name of a guest and his or her date on one card, while others display each person sitting at the table. However, all cards should display the table number. Place cards, on the other hand, help mark the individual seat, and are often arranged on table settings.

Traditional - If you choose the traditional route, it is appropriate to write Mr., Mrs., Ms., and so on, before each name. For married couples, you may abbreviate the names, for example Mr. and Mrs. John Davidson. If children are attending, be sure to write their names along with those of their other family members. You can add the phrase "and Family" to the card - but those older than 10 should get their own card. Take special note for military titles to ensure you include the correct spelling or abbreviation. For unmarried partners, it's customary to write the woman's name first. However, in Europe the man's name appears earliest.

Casual - For a less formal option, omit the titles and simply write each guest's first and last name. If your wedding celebration is especially casual, you could write a first or nickname on each card.

Escort cards 101

To ensure each wedding guest will find the correct card in a swift manner, arrange them in alphabetical order. Also be sure to keep rows short so everyone can scan them easily.

Table - If you have a large guest list, consider splitting the cards up on different tables. You can spread the first third on the first counter and repeat the same format on the other surfaces. Be sure you include a guide notating the range of letters on each table.

Wall - For smaller wedding parties, you can pin each of the cards to a decorative board.

Photo credit: Wedding Wire