We all get to a certain time in our lives when multiple weddings in one year become the norm. Whether you’re married, attached, or single, you’ll have a string of weddings to go to for a number of years to the point where you’ll be sick of them. However, whether you’re a seasoned pro or you’re just starting out on wedding bout, there are some things you need to remember as a guest.
Don't bring a plus one
Unless specifically stated on the invite, never assume that this automatically includes a plus one. Wedding planning is carried out with military precision so a simple mistake such as ‘forgetting’ to include a plus one for a guest is highly unlikely to happen. It’s considered rude to ask if you can bring someone but the exception to the case will usually be if you have a spouse or long-term partner – in cases such as this you can check if a mistake was made. Chances are you can also ask around to see who else was given a plus one and whether or not that guest is your equivalent. Don’t assume you have a plus one just because someone else does, if that someone else is the bride’s sister!
Can I back out?
If we think of a stressed-out bride dealing with a guest who had previously RSVP’d and is now dropping out last minute, we’d be inclined to scream a big, fat ‘No!’ for this one. However, in reality, things happen and it’s okay to back out if a serious event occurs. Things out of your control, such as a death, a family emergency or a financial issue may arise and in those unique cases, it is, of course, okay to back out. The main thing is to let the bride or groom know as soon as possible and send your sincerest apologies. The reality is that life sometimes gets in the way and the wedding party should graciously accept and understand this. However, it is still considered etiquette to send your intended gift or card when the dust settles with whatever stopped you from attending.
Going it alone as a guest
Not knowing anyone at the wedding can be daunting, but it’s certainly not the end of the world. Pouncing on the first singleton you spot in the room is tempting but is not your only option. By doing this, you could be throwing yourself head first into a terribly awkward situation and you may not be rid of the person for the rest of the day. Approaching couples is completely fine and could provide a knock-on effect as they could, in turn, introduce you to other friends of theirs at the ceremony. Just ensure you arrive with a positive mind-set, use a confident approach when speaking to new people and you never know, you may even end up enjoying yourself.
Don't break the bank
Believe it or not, a wedding registry was created more for the benefit of the guests than the bride and groom. If you don’t know the couple very well or if you’re entirely clueless about what to buy them, looking at their online registry is a massive help into getting a clear idea as to what their interests are. If you find that the gifts registered are slightly out of your price range, don’t panic, it’s completely legitimate to buy off registry. It’s far more important to get the couple a gift they’ll enjoy, rather than the hefty price tag that comes along with it. Even better, if you are familiar with a few people attending, why not pool your money together and get a group gift for the happy couple?
- Michelle Storey