(Closed) To receive or not to receive THAT IS THE QUESTION (the line that is)

posted 7 years ago in Etiquette
  • poll: Are you having a receiving line after the wedding ceremony?
    Yes- wouldn't dare skip it : (0 votes)
    No- not for us, but more power to those who do : (25 votes)
    76 %
    Not Sure : (5 votes)
    15 %
    Yes- but wouldn't matter either way : (3 votes)
    9 %
  • Post # 3
    2512 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: August 2011

    Well I have never actually been to a wedding that had a receiving line. So I don’t know anything about it. Does this mean that the bride and groom don’t have a special entrance to the hall?

    Anyways, it seems like a nice idea when you have a few guests, but if you have a lot I could imagine it would take too much time. Either way, I doubt we will be doing it.

    Post # 4
    6394 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: September 2011

    I’ve seen it done well and poorly. We’re personally not doing it. Just be sure to individually greet all your guests and you’re covered :).

    Post # 5
    9029 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: June 2011

    I have been to MANY weddings and only one of them had a receiving line. It really depends on your social circle, but most people dont expect it and arent offended if you dont have a receiving line. I plan to rush off to the park for our pictures and meet all the guests at the reception. we plan to go from table to table to speak to everyone.

    Post # 6
    5655 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: April 2011

    We’re having a receiving line b/c chatty guests or not it will save us time & energy.

    FH and I aren’t having an “all night long” reception & don’t want to spend the whole time doing the meet/greet. We’d rather take the 15 minutes at the line than the hour+ of ducking out of convos at the the reception 😉

    Post # 7
    3182 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: May 2012

    My cousin’s wedding did a reception kind of line at the end of the evening, no grand exit but they were there by the door to thank everyone for coming. Of course they also did the table to table thing during dinner which was horrible because it took forever so people felt compelled to stay at the table long after dinner was over. 

    Post # 8
    10288 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper
    • Wedding: October 2011

    We’re skipping it too. Our guests would rather get to the cocktail hour than stand in line waiting to congratulate us anyway. We’re only having 85 guests and since we’re doing a first look and we’ll be present for most of our cocktail hour, I’m sure we’ll have plenty of time to visit with everyone at some point during the cocktail hour/reception.  

    Post # 10
    1664 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: May 2011

    Your post is interesting to me b/c I have the opposite take.  Our wedding is going to be 150-170 people (mostly FH’s family).  Some of these people are long winded, and my FH isn’t good at breaking off conversations.  I’m thinking of doing a receiving line because of this.  We’re going to try to talk to everyone at the reception too, but getting it out of the way so we don’t end up spending 10 minutes at every table makes sense to me.  I feel like people feel more pressure to move on if there is a line.

    Post # 11
    5655 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: April 2011

    hmmm I think there might be some confusion with my post… we’re doing the receiving line after the ceremony so we don’t have to do the meet/greet at the reception.. and then we’re having the “send off” at the end of our brunch reception.

    Post # 12
    592 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: October 2012

    @runsyellowlites:  Exactly why we’re doing a receiving line too!


    I’m paying all this money, I want to enjoy my reception!!!  Ya’ll can see me on the dance floor if you want to chat some more.  Wink

    Post # 13
    381 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: April 2011

    We’re doing a receiving line but it’s very customary in my Italian family to do so. It will just involve us and our parents, not the entire bridal party – that would be awkward for everyone. The tradition in our family is that the men all take a shot (of some italian liquor – nothing too crazy) and get a cigar when they come through the line and the women get the favor. I would be fine not having a receiving line but I figured I’d keep my parents happy by keeping this tradition alive.

    The only time I’ve seen receiving lines has been at family weddings. All other wedding I’ve been to, it was not part of it – so you won’t be offending anyone.

    Post # 14
    858 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: June 2010

    My husband’s brother and his wife had a receiving line and it took over an hour, literally. Those people had to stand/sit in the church while they waited their turn because apparently they also had some long winded guests. What we did at our wedding was walked out, had our wedding party walk out after us, and then came back in and ushered people out as a couple. That way they got to hug us and say congratulations, but they didn’t stay and chat because they were being excused from their seats. It worked pretty well. 🙂

    Post # 15
    542 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: March 2011

    I am not sure if it is just the culture of the state that I live in, but receiving lines are HUGE here. And like one of the PP mentioned, I’ve also seen them done well and I’ve seen them done poorly. Mostly poorly though. I think a lot of people miss the concept behind them. My older sister did one at her wedding but it was only for about 30 minutes and then it was on to the reception. At just about any other wedding or reception I’ve been to, the receiving line is set up for the entire reception. The bride, groom, bridal party and often parents will stand or sit in the receving line the entire time. They never mingle, which I find really weird. It’s been awkward in the past because after about an hour, everyone has been through the line and so if you want to get in any time with the bride or groom, you have to go back through the line. It is just really weird, IMO. But more power to anyone that wants to. My wedding will be pretty small. Only about 75 guests, so we are just going to make sure we go and talk to everyone individually.

    Post # 16
    367 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: September 2008

    For our wedding, we never had a great spot to do a receiving line and it didn’t really appeal to me either.  What we decided to do was to release the guests ourselves rather than having an usher go row by row.  This way, guests could remain seated, not standing in a long line, and we personally got to thank everyone for coming.  

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