Wedding Guest Etiquette
What is proper guest etiquette for different situations while you're attending a wedding?
Much thought is given to etiquette for the wedding party and planning the event, but what is proper etiquette if you are invited to a wedding? After all, you don't want to be viewed as out of place or committing a wedding faux pas. So, here are some wedding guest tips as to what's acceptable behavior and what's not when you go to your next wedding.
• Know the theme and nature of the wedding. Some weddings represent certain cultures. If the wedding you're attending is an African wedding, find out if you need to dress in African garb. If the wedding you're attending is a period wedding, you'll need to do the same.
• Arrive a half hour early. It's important that you arrive at the church or wedding site about a half hour before the start of the actual wedding. You don't want to enter a situation that has you entering the church at the same time as the bride and her court walks down the aisle. You should be in your seat by then. Arriving early also allows you to hear some of the prelude music that the wedding party has planned.
• Remain quiet during the service. If you have small children, make sure they understand that they need to be quiet during the ceremony. If they start to be loud, it's important that you remove them from the sanctuary, so they won't cause a disturbance.
• Bring a gift. Unless you've already given the bride and groom a gift prior to the ceremony, you should bring your gift for them at the reception. They'll have a table set up especially for gifts. If you don't bring a gift, explain to the bride or groom that you do have a gift for them but that you'll bring it to them within the next week.