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Wedding Guest Etiquette – Correct Etiquette for the Wedding Guest

Ran across an interesting article that I thought I’d share with you.  Enjoy! Go get you etiquette on! hahahaha

If you have been invited to a wedding, then brushing up on your wedding guest etiquette skills would not be a bad thing.  Many of us think we know how to conduct ourselves in public, but in practice can often let the sense of occasion (and the free flowing champagne) cloud our judgment.  And whilst a drunken reveler at a wedding reception may seem like good entertainment on the wedding video, it is a potential headache for the other wedding guests and the bride and groom!

To begin with a dress code may have been specified by the bride and groom.  Often referred to as black tie, evening dress or perhaps a specific theme, each guest will be expected to arrive suitably suited and booted as it were and to not do so would be considered rude in the eyes of wedding etiquette.  If you are at all concerned about what you are expected to wear then a polite phone call to the bride’s mother or to the maid of honor should help you.

For the wedding ceremony each guest is expected to arrive around twenty minutes before the bride.  If you are late do not enter the ceremony venue but instead go directly to the reception venue, you can give your excuses to the couple later.  To enter the ceremony part way through what will be an emotional time for the bride and groom is very unsettling and can spoil what would be a romantic atmosphere.

When shown to your seats at the ceremony, make sure you have turned off any mobile phones and pagers and that you are comfortable – some ceremonies can take a long time so try to visit the bathroom before you sit down!  Try not to make any blasphemous comments if the ceremony is a religious one and be careful of your language!

The wedding reception is the part everyone looks forward to the most, but this too is often filled with many traditions and customs that require a degree of etiquette to be applied from the invited guests.  Don’t take advantage of your host’s hospitality too early on!  A welcome drink is usually on supplied one to each guest, so make it last unless a pay bar is available.  Depending on the style of the wedding and the hospitality laid on you maybe offered a refill, but try not to get roaring drunk before the first speeches have been given!

Make yourself available for the wedding photographs and don’t disappear off to the bar at the first opportunity!  Many couples like to have a photograph of themselves and all the wedding guests so whether you are close to them or not, make sure you can be found when called upon.  Peaking too soon on the free Champagne and wine is one of the biggest problems faced by wedding guests and the bride and groom.  No-one wants a drunken reveler loosing all their inhibitions and shouting out comments about the bride or what the groom got up to on the bachelor party!  Keep the drinking in check at least until the evening party is in full swing, then you can let loose!

Written by Georgina Clatworthy

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