Attendants vs. attendees

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Geo Calderon, Jun 3, 2008.

  1. Geo Calderon New Member

    Mexican Spanish
    Hello! I have a problem. I'm organizing conference and at the entrance i'm putting a Welcome Canvas, but i don't know if I should use "attendants" or "attendees"... what the best for this situation? and what's the difference?
  2. Matching Mole

    Matching Mole Senior Member

    England, English
    Welcome to the forum, Geo Calderon.

    Some dictionaries define "attendant" as someone who attends a meeting, etc., which is the same meaning as "attendee". However, attendant more usually suggests an assistant or servant, someone who attends to the personal needs of another. I would therefore prefer attendees when talking about a meeting, seminar, etc.

    There may be a difference according to region (e.g. US versus British English). As I am British you may want to wait until someone from the US answers.
  3. bibliolept

    bibliolept Senior Member

    Northern California
    AE, Español
  4. Cagey post mod (English Only / Latin)

    English - US
    If this is a conference for a specific group of people, you might use that in the welcoming sign: "Welcome Members of XYZ" "Welcome Realtors" and so forth.

    This is the form I have seen most often.
  5. SanzdeAcedo Banned

    Genève (mostly)
    Español, English
    As mentioned above, people normally say attendee, not attendant.
    However, in this case, it's much better to welcome the specific group, as Cagey suggests, instead of using a vague, impersonal term like attendees.
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2008

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