Photo Credit: Limelight Photography

Depending on the formality of your wedding, it is very important to consider the proper etiquette for the event. If you are a laid back couple looking for a good ole’ Texas barbeque in the beautiful backyard, you might be a little laxer and not have to worry about these tips, but if you are planning a formal occasion, these are definitely guidelines to consider. As times changes and weddings evolve, the traditions of etiquette have changed as well.

So let’s get right to it.  Every wedding is different and has its own style, so there is no specific order to any of these.  The following items are wedding etiquette everyone should know and follow:

Adult reception only

No kids, no kids, no kids! That is what an adult reception only means.  Now we know if you have kids, it can be very hard to find a babysitter, especially on a Friday or Saturday night, but most of the time an adult reception is planned either because of spacing issues, budget, or the bride and groom would just like to have an evening with just adults.  This is always mentioned in the invitation if they do not want children and we all know how obnoxious it can be to have a crying kid during a romantic ceremony, making other guests not be able to hear and enjoy the moment.  So be respectful to the couple and do not bring children if it is an adult reception only. (For the bride and groom- make your decision to invite children or not and stick with it!)


Photo Credit: Limelight Photography

  1. Weddings are a perfect occasion for gift-giving, so here is some useful gift etiquette advise:
  2. Do not print registry information on the invitation
  3. Do not explicitly ask for cash; your family and close friends can inform guests of your preferences if asked.
  4. Don’t forget your thank you letters. It is good to send out a hand-written thank you note within two weeks of receiving your gift.  (Depending on honeymoon length)
  5. Price is always a hard point. The idea is that each gift should cost as much as one plate at the reception.
  6. For the gift givers- Always buy something that is on the registry, if you do not make sure you know it is something the couple does not already have and you know they want or need!

Cash bars

YES, we know weddings are expensive! But when considering cash bar really think about it. Would you ever ask someone to pay for a beverage when coming to your home?  People are still your guests even though it isn’t taken place at your home, so think of the alternatives.  Maybe only host beer and wine and have liquor available for cash.  Or find a venue, like here at Plaza Lecea that allows you to bring in your own alcohol.  (This is a great way to save!)  Now for any bar, it is always ok to tip.  Even if they do not have a tip jar out, and you would like to tip, it is good to credit the servers for their good work.

Plus Ones

This can be one of the hardest choices for a couple. Who can bring a date and who cannot?  It is always too important to invite a family first, and then close friends.  If you do have friends that are single, it has become they do not get to bring a date unless living with a boyfriend/girlfriend or has been in a long-term relationship.  You are on a budget so it is perfectly fine to let a single friend not bring a date.  Would you want them to just invite anyone and you spend that extra money for the plus one you may not even know?

Tipping Vendors

Photo Credit: Limelight Photography

First of all, it is always important for the bride and groom to attend their wedding with some extra cash, whether it be for going overtime on the limo, having to pay for extra guests, or even just deciding to continue the after party and go out afterward. But it is good to have that extra cash to tip your vendors.  If you think you received the quality service you paid for and your vendors went above and beyond, it is good to show them they provided great work and made you and all your guests happy with a tip.  Whether it be the bartender, DJ, coordinator, caterer, or anyone else, it is proper to tip them, just as you would tip your servers at a restaurant.

Now you know when you’re planning your wedding or the next time you get invited to the wedding the do’s and don’ts.  So make sure to keep all of these things in mind so your special day is the best it can be.  It is easy to get caught in wedding etiquette blunder, so remember there is no right or wrong way and every couple is different, but you want to be polite and courtesy at the same time!

Happy planning!