Wedding Etiquette to Remember for the Family, Friends and Guests

Wedding bells are ringing and you have been invited to share and witness a memorable occasion.  Two people in love will be exchanging their vows of lifetime partnership and loyalty in front of their family, relatives, friends and guests.  If you are one of the special people invited to be part of this sacred event, what are some of the things you should remember?  In this article, let us focus on the proper wedding etiquette on various aspects or situations:-

Wedding Etiquette – Who Pays for WhatImage Source:Benshepherd

Some couples may opt to have their wedding outside the city or outside the State. In fact, destination weddings are increasingly becoming popular these days where the couple chooses to wed in a different country. If you have been invited to attend a wedding that will be held in a location far away from where you live, it should be clear what the costs would be and who pays for what.

For instance, some couples may intend to shoulder all the expenses that their guests will incur, including plane tickets and hotel accommodation just to have them there.  However, this may not always be the case.  Budget could be an issue and guests might need to pay for their own travel expenses should they want to attend the wedding.

Wedding Etiquette – Invitations

What should you do when you receive an invitation from a relative or a friend who’s about to tie the knot?  Below are some important steps that you should not fail to do:-

Respond to RSVP–  The letters RSVP are often printed on wedding invitations.  These letters are an acronym for the French expression “répondez s’il vous plaît” which simply means “please, respond”.  Below the letters RSVP, there should be a telephone number, a mobile number, or an e-mail address where you can get in touch with the organizer of the event.  Clearly, the soon-to-be wedded couple is expecting your personal response whether you will  attend or will not be able to attend their wedding.

Therefore, it’s very important to send word whether you will be present or not on the wedding day.  Why is it necessary to send notice immediately?  They need to know the exact number of guests expected to be there so that the necessary arrangements can be made.  So once you receive a wedding invitation, see to it that you will respond right away.

Don’t bring an uninvited person–  From the invitation, you would know how many seats (for the ceremony and reception) have been reserved on your behalf.  For instance, the invitation may state, “Two seats have been reserved in your honor”.  Obviously, this means you can bring another person to the wedding but you cannot bring two or three more.  It’s crucial to strictly follow this guide because arrangements have already been made.

Don’t bring kids to an “Adult Reception”-  While children are often welcome in most weddings, some couples may choose to limit their guests to adults only.  Why so?  There could be a number of reasons.  For instance, they might have a limited budget so they need to keep the number of guests to a small number.  It is also possible that the venue of the reception would not be safe or suitable to have kids around.  Whatever the reason is, it’s important for a guest to respect the couple’s wishes.  After all, it is their wedding and they surely have a good reason why they have chosen not to include children in the reception.

Wedding Etiquette – Gifts

Are there rules on giving presents to newlyweds?  Yes, there are a few.  Consider these points:-

Do research-  Are you thinking about the perfect gift?  A lot of people find it very difficult to decide what kind of wedding gift would be best.  However, to make things easier, you may ask the bride or the groom if they have created a gift registry online.

Most couples set up a website for their wedding preparations so friends and guests can easily check out the site and get to know the plans.  Don’t forget to closely examine the invitation as the link to their website might be included there.   From the gift registry, you should see some of the items on the couple’s wish list.

Another practical strategy is to ask the future bride herself or the groom himself.  However, if you feel uncomfortable asking the bride or groom directly, you can also get gift ideas from people who are closest to them such as their mom or dad, sisters, brothers, cousins, maid-of-honor and best man.

Be generous but realistic-  How much should you spend on a wedding gift?  Some people feel that they need to spend lavishly on a gift to make the couple happy but this is not always the case.  You should decide carefully how much you can afford to spend on a gift.

If you have money to spend, of course, there are no restrictions on generosity.  Nevertheless, if you’re really on a budget, even a simple, inexpensive gift can mean much as long as it’s something relevant to the bride and groom.  So, do a little more research and ask around what kinds of things the bride and the groom are fond of.

Where to send the gift?  Sometimes, the couple may prefer to have all their gifts sent to a specific address.  If this is the case, it should be stated in the invitation.  If the couple chooses to have their gifts sent to them at a particular location, don’t bother carrying the gift to the place of the ceremony or the reception.

Cash or Check?  It is perfectly okay to have cash or check or gift certificates as wedding gifts.  The couple will have the option to choose how they want to spend it or what they want to buy with their gift check.  In fact, cash and checks are great especially for destination weddings.  If you will give them a big item, bringing it back home can be a hassle.

More Wedding Etiquette to RememberImage Source : Modwedding

Don’t be late-  It is only proper to arrive at the venue at least 15 to 20 minutes before the ceremony starts.  All the guests should have been promptly escorted to their seats before the bride takes her traditional walk down the aisle.

Expect to pay your own travel expenses unless the couple makes the offer-  If the wedding would be held in a distant location, guests should expect to pay for their own transportation and accommodation unless of course, the couple has made it clear that they are shouldering the expenses.

Follow the seat-plan-  You might prefer to be seated somewhere else but it is only proper to follow the original seating arrangements, even if that means seating next to someone you don’t know.

Don’t get drunk–  Wine and spirits are usually served at weddings but guests are expected to enjoy these beverages in moderation.  If you know that you have a problem with alcohol and even just a little sip makes you tipsy or lose control, then it would be best not to drink any at all than to make an awful scene on the wedding.

Have a wonderful time- You are attending a happy occasion so there is no point in sulking or in worrying about unnecessary things.  There might be a few glitches as you can’t really expect everything to go perfectly as planned but that should not be a reason to spoil the celebration. So smile and focus on the beauty of the occasion and feel the love all around.  Ultimately, the most essential wedding etiquette you should keep in mind is to be genuinely happy for the newly-wedded couple.


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