Wedding etiquette and traditions vary widely across the world for different reasons. I will be the first to point out that traditions and etiquette have been broken over the past few decades. However, I am a firm believer in tradition as many of our etiquette guidelines were established for a reason. Weather it be to honor a culture or simply make a seemingly stressful day one that everyone can enjoy. So, what are the most influential mistakes that both the bride/groom and their guests make? Well, I am here to tell you the top five mistakes made! Take note.
First: Bringing the wedding gift to the wedding. It is actually customary to mail the wedding gift prior to the wedding day (guest mistake). This not only allows the bride and groom to unpack and address thank you cards before the big day, it also alleviates lugging all those wedding gifts home with a family member at the end of the night.
Second: Not sending a thank you note for ANY gift you received for your wedding. This is a BIG no – no! Believe me, as much as I could care less if my friend sends me a thank you note, there are those that take it very seriously (especially older family members). Kidding aside, this is probably one of the rudest mistakes that you can make. While they love you very much, all of your guests took time and money out of their life to witness your wedding day and a simple thank you for coming and for the gift is the least you can do.
Third: Not offering enough food at your wedding! I know, I know, weddings are expensive these days and you want to have enough money to buy that beautiful dress, flowers, cake, ect… However, be warned that if you chose to skimp on your wedding fare, it will NOT go unnoticed. I am guilty of this even after over 15 years in the wedding industry, I still get disappointed when I come hungry to a wedding and there is not a sufficient amount of food. Point is, don’t leave your guests hungry!
Fourth: Being late to the ceremony!! You can go ahead and put this at the top of your list on things NOT to do at a wedding. Being late is perhaps the most over looked expectation at a wedding. The couple has spent A LOT of money on their big day and there are many factors that are affected when things don’t run in a timely manner; i.e. dinner could be delayed and not fresh, they may have only paid for a certain amount of time in the ceremony space, the whether could be sketchy, ect… So, do everyone a favor and arrive at least 15-30 minutes prior to the ceremony start time. This also ensures that you will get a good seat and not walking in the same time the bride is!
Lastly: Not R.S.V.Ping to the wedding! Guys…this is everything! Since it is customary at most weddings to provide each guests with an escort card, sending in your RSVP is very important. Bottom line, if you don’t RSVP, you will not have a seat in the reception. Which means that you are not accounted for in the food and beverage count either. There is nothing more embarrassing that not having a seat and the staff having to scramble to find you a seat and possibly collecting more money from the bride and groom on wedding day. Save everyone the trouble and put the already self-addressed envelope back in the mail!