Post # 1
This seems to be a hot topic but I can’t find a lot of recent posts on this issue. I didn’t plan or anticipate to have a Friday wedding but that’s just what worked out with our top venues. It was Friday, or summer 2015. So we went with Friday. But I’m torn now on when to start it. My sister had a Friday wedding 8 years ago and planned for 5 but had to delay to 530 because so many guests were running late due to traffic. My DJ however (who also coordinates our local wedding expo – not your standard DJ!) recommended 4pm. Really?! That seems way too early but I also understand his point of not rushing the rest of the event because we have to end the reception at 10pm AND have everything cleaned up and off the property by 11pm. I’ve already notified our really important guests and they’re trying to take the whole day off just because it’s Friday and the groom’s side has to travel from several different states so I don’t think an earlier time will be an issue for them. Help?
We’re already planning to do all our photos before the ceremony and will have dinner served within half hour of the end of the ceremony.
Post # 3
The later the better; I’d say 6 just to be safe. I myself would take a day off of work to attend a Friday wedding, but a lot of people won’t.
Post # 4
@Soon2BeMrsS: 6 or later. Plus then it is easier for guests to decide whether they should dress for the day or the evening – and if you want a Black Tie dress code, no controversy or compromise. If it was me, I would even say as late as 8. Let people get home from work, get cleaned up, put on their best duds, and come out to celebrate. It also allows people to take a Friday morning flight, and then your out of town guests would only have to use up one vacation day.
I think the other option is to do it during the day, and just understand fewer people will be able to attend, but you will get firm RSVP’s. People will take the whole day, or the afternoon, off work, or they won’t.
Post # 6
I’d go with 530…then some people can make it after work. I don’t think you can do 6 if you have to finish up early and have a lot of party time.
Post # 7
It depends. Are your guest local or out of town? Will any try and work a half day before the wedding, or will they have to take the whole day off anyway?
Post # 8
We are doing our Friday night wedding at 6:30
Post # 9
We had a 6:30 start time with the ceremony being at the venue. Guests arrived, were given champagne and then by 6:45 the music had started and I was walking down the aisle. By 7 p.m. everyone was drinking and having appetizers, then seated for dinner around 7:45. We had our venue until 11:30.
Post # 10
Taking into consideration that you have to be out of your venue by 11, I would do a 5 or 5:30 pm ceremony. It’s not super convenient, but neither is attending a Friday wedding for most people. Either they’ll take time off work, or they won’t come.
Post # 11
@Soon2BeMrsS: I may be the unpopular opinion, but we are doing our Friday wedding ceremony at 130-2 ish, with a rather large break in the middle for pictures. We know many people are just going to come to the reception, which is fine with us.
Post # 12
@Soon2BeMrsS: I had a Friday wedding and we didn’t start until 7 PM. Actually it was gorgeous because it was that sunset “golden hour” so starting late isn’t so bad!! 🙂 It was also nice to sleep in and have the whole afternoon to do as I please/get ready in a leisurely way.
Post # 13
@Soon2BeMrsS: I just went to a Friday wedding that started at 4:30 pm and even though I left work (an hour away) at 2:30, thanks to Friday traffic, I didn’t arrive at the venue until just as the wedding party was coming down the aisle. It was SO stressful and I felt so gross and sweaty from being in the car and in traffic. I would suggest pushing your start until 6pm to give everyone enough time to get there. Plus, in the Summer you’ll still have plenty of daylight!
Post # 14
I agree with prior posters. The later the start the better for your guests! Your DJ is probably worried about having to push the party along, which you will likely need to. You likely will go streight from cerimony to dinner, to dancing.
My suggestion for more fun is to look at after party opptions. A fun bar or club, or even a fire pit at someday house can be a fun way to end your night, and can make for geat times with your guests.
Post # 15
@Soon2BeMrsS: We had a Friday wedding and the ceremony started at 6:30 pm. I would NOT recommend going any earlier than that as it allows people to work most if not all of the day without having to take time off. Plus you need to account for Friday traffic which is always miserable no matter where you live.
Post # 16
Thanks everyone for the input. We still have time to decide. If it weren’t for the 10pm cutoff, I would be more than willing to start at 6. But as it, that’s only 4 hours and I think we’ll feel pretty rushed trying to get through ceremony, dinner, toasts, cake, etc. I had originally thought 5 or 530, but the DJ’s opinion (who DJs regularly at this venue) threw me a bit.