Friday, December 5, 2014

How to Be a Good Wedding Guest

After months and months of losing sleep and sweating it out on a guest list, my hubby and I finally had a perfect seat plan for the reception. You can imagine just how much a guest wanting to bring an unexpected plus one to the wedding made us want to rip their throats out.

Thankfully, most of our wedding guests were amazing people who made our wedding day extra special because they were all just wonderful. We love them all so, so much. :)

We were very lucky with our wedding guests, but most couples are not as fortunate. Unruly wedding guests can be a pain. Being one of the first among my peers to get married, I am now witnessing the steady stream of my friends getting hitched one by one. And if you don’t want to be blacklisted as a horrible guest that nobody will want to invite ever again, read through these tips.

How to Be the Model Wedding Guest of Any Couple’s Dreams


The most important present you can give the couple is your presence. There’s a reason it’s called a present, right? You may think that the couple won’t notice you in the sea of faces, and sure, they might not have enough time to chat with you during the reception and ceremony itself. But when the wedding is over and the newlyweds are happily reminiscing about their special day, they WILL realize that something was amiss—you. And then you will forever be marked as that one so-called friend who didn’t even bother to show up and share the most romantic night of their lives with them.

2. Come on time.

When the invitation says 6PM, come at 6PM. You may think it’s embarrassing to come early and sit alone at your table, forced to mingle and make small talk with others. But it’s WAY more embarrassing to arrive late and have your seat given away because the coordinator assumed you weren’t coming. And then you would have to put everyone through the hassle of finding a place for you because you just can’t understand what a call time is. Being late is NOT fashionable.

3. RSVP.

When you do get married yourself, you’ll realize that the most difficult thing to plan is the guest list, and planning the seating arrangement will never be accomplished if you don’t RSVP. Don’t be a flaky flaker who changes his mind at the last minute either, because once the tables are set, they are set. Just one tiny little seat out of place will cause the whole system to break down—yes, it is THAT complicated. Plus, if you RSVP for two people, then just come as two people. Do not bring your whole entourage with you—they WILL NOT be seated.

4. Overdress, not underdress.

If you’re not quite sure what to wear to the event and you can’t decipher what the venue calls for, then it’s better to be overdressed than underdressed. You don’t want to be one of those oldies who wear Lacoste shirts to the wedding and then brag about how much the sportshirt costs. Sure, that Lacoste shirt may cost way more than a traditional barong, but it’ll look unprepared and will make the event look cheap. Save the shirt for another day and wear a tux instead. Oh, and by the way, if you’re not certain about wearing a suit or a barong, ask the couple what the male entourage will be wearing. If the entourage is in a barong, then wear a barong. If they’re in suits, then wear a suit.

5. If you’re a really close friend, stay until the end of the wedding.

You probably already know that the couple will be too busy to eat let alone chat during the actual ceremony and reception, so if you really want to share the moment with them, stay until the wedding is over. When the acquaintances have left and the couple has said their thank yous to their relatives and older guests, they will kick back and relax in the ball or lounge area. This is when they will appreciate the presence of their closest friends the most.

6. When your name is called during the games, come up on stage right away.

Don’t dillydally. The more you delay, the more the event gets delayed, the more everyone else gets annoyed. Just suck it up and join the games. Don’t be a killjoy, yes?

7. Don’t be certified paparazzi.

So the couple is browsing through their beloved wedding photos after the ceremony. They’re laughing and smiling and in love and then there’s your face or your back or your whole body, blocking the photographer’s view because you just can’t wait to get a shot of the couple for yourself. Do NOT get in the way of the photo-video crew. There’s a reason they’re called official photographers, and you are not one of them. Plus, even just the flash from your camera or phone is horrible enough to ruin a good official shot. I know photobombing is a thing, but you should never do that when uncalled for, either. Feel free to take pictures, but just make sure you're not in the way.

8. Give practical gifts.

One of the awful gifts that hubby and I got was an old blender with the box molding and yellowed. We didn’t even want to try it out because it might just cause a fire hazard in the house. Just because you have a spare toaster lying around at home doesn’t mean you can recycle it and hand it over to the couple. If you MUST recycle a gift, then save yourself the shame by recycling one that will actually be useful and will make the couple happy. Most importantly, if you’re a really awesome friend, check their registry or give them something practical—an angpao. You can never go wrong with cash. :)

9. Don't be a glutton.

If the food served is in laureat style, serve yourself one piece of every dish for the first round. In table settings like this one, each serving is counted for the exact number of people in the table, so if you get two pieces of shrimp right off the bat, that would mean that one other person in your table will not be tasting that delectable shrimp because, in classic glutton fashion, you just took his share. So give your appetite a break and just take one piece for yourself. If, on the second round, that piece of shrimp is still there, that just means that someone in your table doesn't want to eat one or is allergic to shellfish. That's the time for you to grab that second piece of shrimp for yourself.

10. It’s a wedding, not a bar.

There may be unlimited drinks at some receptions, but that doesn’t give you a free pass to go ahead and binge-drink. You know that classic drunken uncle everyone hates because he’s always ruining weddings? Yes, that might just be you.

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