Post # 1
We will be attending a Chinese wedding banquet, held in a restaurant in a large city’s Chinatown. I was wondering if anyone has been to one of these, and what to expect. The bride told me it was semi-formal and to expect great food. But the event is coming closer and I don’t want to bother her with emails asking what else to expect. Google hasn’t been helpfu eitherl. Is there dancing and partying, or is this strictly a food thing? The couple will have had an official ceremony prior to the event.
Also, I read that traditional Chinese wedding gifts should be cash only. They have a registry and haven’t lived together yet, so should we get them something from the registry or just do cash? (We = my boyfriend and I, who are friends with the couple although we live far away from them).
Thanks in advance for any information you can provide!
Post # 3
In a traditional Chinese banquet there’s usually no dancing. You have a ten course Chinese dinner that will take a long time and you sit around and talk to your neighbors. They may have a new interpretation since its in the Us.
The bride and groom will make an appearance, pour champagne, and you guys will toast the bride and groom.
The gift is usually enough money in a red packet to cover your plate. So if you go to a very expensive hotel, you give more etc.
Here’s a singapore version of how much to give:
Post # 4
You can definitely expect LOTS of food. Traditionally it’s usually 10 courses eaten family style. You’re right that wedding gifts are most often cash, but if they created a registry, of course you are welcome to buy them something from the registry. Most of the Chinese/Vietnamese weddings I’ve been to (including mine) had a DJ and dance floor. It won’t be all that much different than a regular “American” reception except for the family style serving, the amount of courses and of course the language spoken. One thing I can say for sure is, don’t show up super early, right on time or a little earlier will be good, because Asian receptions are NOTORIOUS for starting late, haha
Post # 5
Like the PPs said, it depends if it’s strictly traditional or of they’ve decided to incorporate a little bit more western things, such as dancing. There’s usually some sort of live entertainment and cheesy games.
I wouldn’t get too dressed up. It’s not as dressy as a typical western wedding. I always pick something one step down from what I’d normally wear to a western wedding. For example, one wedding banquet I went in a casual dress and everyone else was in jeans and a nice top. =/ Like they were going for a night out.
Post # 6
Just know that rice will be one of the last dishes served at the meal.
Post # 7
I would dress up anyway. Cocktail should be fine. It really depends on the location. If hotel chinese banquet dress up, have seen people wear gowns. Since she said semi formal and its in Chinatown..you probably won’t go wrong with cocktail, or even pants and a nice dressy top.
Post # 8
Thanks, everyone!! This information has been really helpful. Please feel free to keep it coming! I’m very excited for the feast!
Post # 9
- Wedding: January 2012 - Wynn Las Vegas/Bouchon Bistro
As other people have said, it depends! We are having a Chinese banquet in August, and ours will be a ton of food but no dancing. The attire is going to be more casual than that at our actual wedding reception; I will probably wear a nice dress, and my husband will wear a slacks and a blazer.
Gifts traditionally are red envelopes with money, but if the couple has a registry, you should feel free to use it for other ideas!