Wedding Host Couples Etiquette

My husband’s sister recently got engaged to a guy that we really do not like. She was a bridesmaid in our wedding just because my husband wanted to include everyone. Now she has asked us if we would be one of their host couples along with two other people who are not married to each other. It seems strange to me to be doing this because my family has always had older people (not 20-somethings) such as aunts and uncles or godparents as the host couples. What is proper? And is it okay for us to decline? What are we supposed to do? We aren’t even excited to go to the wedding. Please help!

Donna, Wedding Queen, President

I’m not familiar with “host couple”. Perhaps this is a regional thing? Please clarify. Thanks.

Reader Response

The job of the host couple is to assist the guests at the wedding. They do things like greeting guests, making sure they know where to get food and drinks and when to get in line for food if its not being served and just basically help the guests know what is going on at the reception. At our wedding our host couples also made sure that we had drinks at the head table and served the champagne for the toasts and got the dance started when we were ready. I think it may be a regional thing too. Its a very busy job.

Donna, Wedding Queen, President

From your description it sounds a lot like a portion of the role that wedding day coordinators fill. I’m not sure I can offer you technical etiquette advice, but I presume you could decline and state that you’re not comfortable fulfilling such a large role in this case, but that you thank them for the honor of being asked and suggest a reduced capacity in which you would be willing to help.

Rebecca Black, Etiquette By Rebecca

I also have never heard of this. To me it sounds like it has been taken from the idea of hosts of the wedding, which in the past has been parents. So, it could be anyone. But, doesn’t have to be anyone. Most people pay for people to do this. Of course you can decline. You can use any reason you want including that you don’t want to be serving all day. This doesn’t seem like much of an honor to me.