So – your big day is coming and your making plans to make your dream wedding come true. And yes, your wedding will be all about you and your partner, but it’s also celebrating your new life with your friends and family. Before you take a deep dive into the details, focus a little bit on your guest experience. Here is our list of the ten worst things you can do to your guests.
Having a Long Delay Between Ceremony and Reception
If, despite all of your careful planning, something happens to delay your reception try to find some way to keep them in a good mood. After all, some people are apt to leave early or become irritated. If the delay is going to be more than 30 minutes, consider opening a tab at a nearby bar, or talk to your wedding planner about local options.
Setting up for an open bar can often blow your wedding budget. That being said, when you host any other party, do you ask your guests to pay for their drinks? Your wedding should be no different! Some ideas include serving only beer and wine, or maybe even just a signature cocktail.
Destination Weddings when Guests Live in the Same City
If your fiancée lives near you and most of your friends and family are close by, planning for a big destination wedding can make you seem a bit self-centered. And yes, we hear you; you have been dreaming about your get-away wedding for a long time, you still need to be considerate of those that won’t be able to make the trip. The solution? Adjust your expectations down a bit and be good for a smaller wedding. And don’t forget to invite everybody who couldn’t make it your wedding to a casual dinner party to celebrate when you get back.
Conflict with a Big Event
It’s just common courtesy to do a bit of research before you pick your wedding date. Obviously, you don’t want to plan to compete with the Super Bowl but also check for birthdays, religious events, etc.
Long Lines for Bathrooms and Bars
Let’s face it – no one enjoys waiting in a long line when they could be helping you celebrate! Make sure your location has enough bathroom capacity to handle your family and friends. The same goes for the bar – we recommend one bartender per 50 guests.
Not Enough Food
This is a crucial issue for you to address with your planner. After all, you can’t expect your guests to spend all afternoon and evening with your without you providing enough food. Pass appetizers around until dinner is served and you will avoid hangry people on your wedding day! If you don’t want to do a seated dinner, a full buffet is an excellent alternative.
Too Long or Too Many Speeches
We all know the bride and groom want to hear from their close friends and family and such speeches can be funny and touching. But don’t schedule too much of a good thing. We recommend 3-4 toasts as a max and make sure everyone knows their time limit. If you find you want to hear from more people, just ask them to stand up at the rehearsal dinner.
Unclear Table Assignments
Talk to your planner about table assignments. Most planners have the right equipment to provide clear seating assignments when your guests arrive for dinner. If you are doing this on your own, try to find a calligrapher to help you with seating assignments.
Very Specific Dress Codes
In recent years, we have seen more weddings with specific dress codes. For example, some of our brides have requested everyone dress in a particular color, and we have found the guests have found this to be constrictive. In the end, it’s just another expense they need to worry about.