(Closed) Do I have to have chairs for all guests?

posted 5 years ago in Ceremony
Post # 3
7220 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2013

Please have chairs for everyone. Looking at me (a fairly fit 24 year old), you would never know that I have back problems that make it very painful to stand for more than five minutes. None of my closest friends even know about this so they would probably assume I would be just fine standing for 20 minutes. Although I could probably manage it, it would be very painful. You never know who in your circle of friends or family might have back issues. As a guest I would probably leave the ceremony if I had to stand more than 5 minutes and go sit in the reception room.

Post # 4
3572 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

I recently went to a wedding where everyone stood except the front two rows, which were for family.  It really was very nice.  The ceremony was around 20 minutes. 

Post # 5
2565 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

You should have enough chairs so if everyone wants to sit down they can.

Post # 6
3766 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: February 2013

Honestly, I would be annoyed if I had to stand.

Post # 7
107 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

I really think you need chairs for everyone to sit down. However! There’s got to be a crafty solution to your dilemma. My venue is similar in that we’re doing the ceremony in the same room where the tables and dancing will be afterwards, so we’re herding everyone over into the next room for cocktail hour while the other one is being “flipped.” Could you maybe have everyone go upstairs for beverages and finger foods while the ceremony chairs are being moved to make room for dancing?

Post # 8
2685 posts
Sugar bee

I went to a wedding recently where there were not enough chairs for everyone and it was awkward.  Part of the problem was the venue was not large enough for their guest list.  Lots of people had to stand in the back and to the side and it felt very odd.  I think it’s worth the effort to have a seat for everyone.

Post # 9
2457 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

Everyone should have chairs. I would be pissed if I went to a wedding where chairs were clearly an option (as in, it’s not out in the middle of the forest or something where acquiring them might be hard) and the bride and groom didn’t provide seating. 

Post # 10
2965 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

@sminckel:  You should have chairs but keep in mind and dont count the guests who have to stand (bridesmaids and groomsmen)

Post # 11
2780 posts
Sugar bee

@sminckel:  I think it’s incredibly rude to only have chairs for some guests but not all

Post # 12
286 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

@sminckel:  I have no medical problems that prohibit me from standing, but I would be annoyed nevertheless if I had to stand all the way through the ceremony. Also if you’re having kids and no chairs then expect to hear a lot of ‘Mommy my legs hurt and I’m boooorrrreeeeedddddd!’s. 

It’s kind of rude not to give everyone a chair because it’s not convenient for you. If you can’t do something basic like seating for your ceremony then you need to find a new venue. 

Post # 13
13015 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Definitely have chairs.  I’d be super annoyed to have to stand.  In fact, I had to stand at a wedding this past weekend, and I kept drifting back to the fact that my feet pinched in my shoes and that I couldn’t see over the taller guys standing in front of me.  I missed most of the ceremony because of it.

Post # 14
1227 posts
Bumble bee

We had a small intimate wedding, and had maybe 4 chairs along the perimeter (24 guests). Ceremony lasted about 15 minutes. No one complained, everyone did fine, including my 70-something mother-in-law who had heart surgery early this summer.


(Following the ceremony we went up to another deck of the ship for a champagne toast and to mingle before heading to lunch. There were a few more chairs, maybe a dozen, and only my Mother-In-Law and her friend took advantage of them. Everyone else was too busy meeting each other, taking pictures, chatting and visiting)


I organize about 80 events a year where I work. They are either 90 minute stand up receptions, or sit down award ceremonies followed by a 45 minute stand up reception.  In the 5 years I’ve been doing this, i have never once had an issue.

ETA after reading your initial post again: if you have a large group, having everyone stand will prohibit everyone from getting a good line of sight for you.  We had a small group, and everyone was able to fan out in an almost semi circle, with things to lean on.  Take that into consideration.

Post # 15
509 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

Yeah, I wouldn’t be the most happy if I had to stand for the whole ceremony. Even if it’s only 15-20 minutes, it will actually be longer spent standing when you count getting there a little early, etc. When I go to a wedding I usually am wearing nice shoes and clothes and I don’t plan for comfort. We’re actually planning to just move our chairs from the ceremony location to the dinner room because I don’t want to have to rent two sets. I don’t anticipate it being that complicated, I’ll just ask all the burly guys I know to grab a couple on their way 😛

Post # 16
3078 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

Your ceremony may only be 15-20 minutes, but people usually show up about 30 minutes early.  That’s a long time to stand.  I would be incredibly annoyed.

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