Guest etiquettes for a Wedding Ceremony

Guest etiquettes for a Wedding Ceremony

written and contributed by Bronte Price, for more about Bronte please see his bio at the end of his article

Everybody loves a wedding. And why wouldn’t we, there is food, there are well-dressed people and then there is all the “love” in the wedding. 

It’s the season for weddings and your calendar is probably overflowing with many e-invitations. You are excited thinking about all the people you will meet and to celebrate the togetherness of people you love. You must have already started preparing yourself, thinking about the dress and the gift. 

There is no good way of saying it, but wearing the dress and the gift only cannot make you a good guest at weddings. A lot of effort goes into being a wedding guest that your hosts fall in love with. Weddings include a lot of elements that aren’t visible to the average guest. Noticing the subtle elements of effort that the host put and functioning accordingly, makes you different from the others. 

Weddings are certainly an occasion for joy and celebrations, however its crucial to maintain decorum while doing it. It’s important to remember that you are a guest and it’s the couple’s day after all. As a guest, it’s your responsibility to make things easier for the couple. 

Here is a list of Dos and Don’ts for wedding guests:

  1. Do not forget to RSVP and always be on time:

Make sure that you keep the couple informed about your decision well on time. This helps them to plan the seating arrangement accordingly. You can’t just drop down without mailing in that RSVP. This is sure to make things awkward for the couple and disrupt their setting. Don’t be surprised if they do not welcome you as heartily as you had expected them to. 

And do not just assume that a 10-15-minute delay to a wedding party is okay. It’s a ceremony that you were invited to be a part of. The ceremony will start without you for sure. But you dropping by mid-way is sure to gain a lot of attention from everyone. 

  1. Keep your phone on silent and try to enjoy the ceremony in real:

You don’t want to be that guy or girl whose cellphone blasted Taylor Swift’s song in between the couples “I do”. Make extra sure that it doesn’t buzz and disturb the proceedings of the ceremony. 

It’s a digital age and people love sharing about their life on social media. However, you should ideally focus on enjoying the ceremony for real instead of going live or worrying about taking the right pictures for your feed. 

  1. Consult with the couple before posting their pictures:

It’s understandable that you are excited to be a part of the ceremony. However, understand that the couple is more excited about it than you. It’s their right to decide on when or when not to share their details with the world. Do not share pictures of the dress, the theme or the couple without consulting with them. 

And at times the couple is not fine with sharing their news with the whole community. They might have invited you and not others from the same circle. Make sure that you do not make things awkward for the couple. 

  1. Do not just assume that you can bring in a plus one:

Unless its mentioned in your invitation. Ideally, anyone whose name is not mentioned in the invitation should not be a part of the ceremony. You can always choose not to go if it doesn’t mention your child or pet, that you want to bring along. Understand that the couple might have reservations against having a pet or a child at their wedding. You may politely ask the couple but be prepared to be answered with a “No”. In case it’s a boy/girlfriend or a spouse, its simple, they can’t be a part unless their name’s mentioned in the invite. 

  1. Do not give an unplanned speech:

It’s okay to be overwhelmed with love for the couple. You might have been a big part of their love story, making you think you owe them a speech. However, they might not share the same idea. You can always convey your thoughts to them in person or keep it for later. There might be many reasons why the couple has not planned a speech from you or for that matter from others too. Don’t be surprised if no one seems enthusiastic after you give your heartful speech for the couple. 

  1. Dress appropriately and stock to the theme:

You do not want to be that desperate guest who had dressed in white or something nearly similar to the couple. It’s the couple’s big day, after all, you don’t want to steal their limelight, do you? Stick to the wedding theme suggested by the couple. Even if you don’t want to buy anything new, you can always stick to something similar from your wardrobe. 

  1. Stick to the registry or at the least something on the same lines:

The couple has planned a registry for a good reason. They would preferably want to get gifts that they can use and don’t have to stack up to pass during the holidays. You should ideally stick to the registry and buy gifts mentioned by the couple. You can always read the registry thoroughly and get a good idea about the couple’s choices and preferences. This option works out well if you are running low on cash. You may not be able to buy the couple a Japanese lamp but you could always buy a pair of engraved chopsticks they could use.

  1. Do not hinder the work of the celebrant, photographer or any other vendor:

You have been invited to the wedding to witness it and enjoy it. However, while doing so do not interrupt the work of the experienced civil celebrant, the professional photographer or any other vendor. They all help in making the wedding a success as a ceremony. This is a great help you can do to the couple. Do not make unnecessary conversations with the celebrant or ask the photographer to help you take better pictures. 

Author Bio-

Australia’s Bronte Price is the first ever certified gay celebrant from the continent that now boasts of marriage equality. He is also the co-founder of an Equality Network that caters any LGBT wedding needs by creating a better experience through wedding suppliers. As a member of the GLOBE (Gay and Lesbian Organization for Business and Enterprise), he works tirelessly to empower the LGBT community. His website Gay Celebrant Melbourne is a stunning example of his dedication for celebrancy that unites the power of love. Apart from that, his fiancée Clint and their four-legged fur baby – Bingo are Bronte’s quintessential lifelines. He is also passionate for volunteering as a newsreader at Joy 94.9 and spending time in his organic backyards comes a close second.