When throwing a wedding, it is essential to understand the etiquette involved with hosting out-of-town guests. It is important to remember that many friends and family will travel miles to celebrate the happy event, so they deserve a proper welcome. Here are some tips to make everyone feel at home and comfortable.
1. Welcome Gift Bags
Even though money may be tight, it is essential to create a “survival” welcome bag for out-of-town guests. It will be a small trinket that shows appreciation for traveling in for the wedding. Besides chocolates, lotions or other luxury goodies, it is smart to include maps of the area, a list of local attractions, menus from recommended restaurants and driving instructions to the wedding location. It’s easy to gather this information and present it when guests arrive, and it will be a pleasant surprise that will alleviate stress from people who may be tired and hungry.
2. Invitation to the Rehearsal Dinner
Some couples wish to host an intimate rehearsal dinner that includes the bride, groom, immediate families, attendants and the officiant. However, others decide to expand the event and invite out-of-town guests. Written invitations make the celebration more organized. It is essential to include all details about where and when the dinner will occur.
If a couple is excluding out-of-town guests, it is polite to give them a list of local restaurants that will fit individual tastes. If there are a limited number of guests, it may be even better to make reservations ahead of time for a particular spot.
A common rule of wedding etiquette is that the bride and groom are responsible for arranging lodging accommodations for their respective out-of-town guests. If guests are not staying with family, the bride and groom can help defray hotel expenses. However, wedding guests are ultimately responsible for lodging costs.
When suggesting hotels, it is important to offer at least three choices that are no farther than 30 minutes from the wedding and reception location. The options should list hotels near the airport, in a downtown location and a more secluded area. The list should also include the approximate prices as well.
It is important to book as early as possible to make sure rooms are available. Also, guests with special needs must be considered. If a large group of guests will be staying at the same hotel, it is essential to speak with the manager and arrange for a group rate.
4. Post-Wedding Brunch
To end the festivities, it may be a nice touch to host a post wedding brunch. It is a great opportunity to thank guests for traveling and bid a proper farewell. If the couple has already left for the honeymoon, the parents or maid of honor should oversee the event.
A wedding can be a very stressful time. However, it is essential to consider the guests and ways to make them as comfortable as possible. Accommodating out-of-town guests does not need to be difficult. The above tips should help ease the burden and make the event as enjoyable as possible.