Weddings can be stressful for the bride and groom as is, from vendors falling through last-minute to wedding party mishaps, so many things can go wrong. If you've been lucky enough to be invited to a wedding in the coming year then do your part to alleviate your loved ones stress by following these 10 rules that every wedding guest should know!

1/ RSVP In Advance

As soon as that invitation comes in the door you should be checking your schedule for any reason you can't attend. Keep in mind the couple has to book the venue, caterers and possibly accommodation so letting them know if you'll be attending or not as soon as you can will help them get their numbers right! If you find out closer to the date that you can't actually go then LET THEM KNOW, it might suck to break the news to your friends but by letting them know in advance they can either adjust their numbers so they don't have to pay for one too many dinners, or they might be able to invite somebody else to take your place. Keeping an open line of communication with the bride and groom will stop you from looking like the bad guy if something comes up!

2/ Follow The Couples Wishes

If the invitation says "no kids" then don't try and smuggle your rugrats in! Quite often couples have very legitimate reasons to put stimulations on their wedding invitations, treat it as gospel, not as a suggestion!

3/ Don't Wear White!

This might honestly depend on the bride and her opinion of this very taboo subject but as a general rule of thumb, you should avoid the colours white and cream if you're planning on wearing a formal dress as it can be considered a gambit to distract from the bride.

4/ Don't Post Pictures Online Before The Bride And Groom

You might be a devil for social media but before you start blasting photos of the bride and groom all over Instagram consider that the couple may want to be the first to show off their big day. You can always ask the bride and groom beforehand but they very likely might ask that you refrain from sharing any of the big moments before them. This doesn't mean you can't flood your insta story with selfies with other guests and videos of you cutting a rug on the dancefloor!

5/ Don't Blow Your Budget

You often hear people talking about the wedding budget or the bridal party budget, but how often do you actually hear people talking about the guests budget? Weddings can be stupidly expensive for guests when you consider travelling costs, accommodation, clothing, gifts and potentially a baby sitter. The last thing you should do is blow your month's rent to attend Jenny from accountings wedding, you'll only end up resenting her and the whole day for costing you so much! If you can't afford to go all out then don't, have a good night and give the couple your love instead of stressing about going into overdraft to pay for a dress.

6/ Ask Before Bringing A Plus One

Guestlists are pretty tight by the time the invitations are sent out, you might notice that you don't have a plus one option on your invitation and this is probably the reason. Whether it's venue space, the cost of a meal or just not wanting to invite a stranger to their wedding the couple has a right to have the final say on a plus one. It doesn't hurt to ask though, they might have assumed you wanted to attend alone but will be willing to make space for one more person. Also, if you've been given the option of a plus one on the invitation and you don't know if you're bringing somebody or not then air on the side of yes and as you get closer to the day if you're really stuck then let them know. It's always easier to cancel or reallocate a meal than it is to add one on last minute!

7/ Make Dietary Restrictions Know Early

There's usually a box on the invitation for you to check or comment on if you have any dietary restrictions and it's important to put them down if you have any. If there's no box for you to write them down, then find somewhere to add them in or notify the bride or groom as early as possible. A wedding dinner is a well-oiled machine by the time you sit down, and it's best for a guest to alert them to allergies or restrictions long before then. The last thing the bride and groom want is a guest going into anaphylactic shock in the middle of the main course!

8/ Don't Be A Negative Nancy

One of the most annoying people at a wedding is the person in the corner complaining about every tiny detail! If you've been privileged to be invited to somebody wedding day then keep your negative opinions to yourself or text a friend who isn't in attendance. Don't bring down the mood of everybody in attendance by openly moaning about the dinner portion size, the volume of the music, the range of wines or the number of people at each table!

9/ Don't Drink Too Much

The absolute last person you should be at a wedding is the person who's had too much to drink. It might be tempting to go ham at the open bar and wine on the table but don't sell your dignity for a few glasses of free prosecco! You don't want to the drunk eejit on everybody's snapchat stories and you certainly wouldn't want to do something that could potentially ruin the wedding and subsequently your relationship with the couple!

10/ Have Fun!

It's a wedding! It's probably one of the most expensive parties most people will ever throw in their life and it's meant to be enjoyed. Have a fun time wining and dining while you celebrate the eternal happiness of your loved ones.


- Grainne