(Closed) Is a five hour reception too short?

posted 5 years ago in Reception
  • poll: Is a five hour reception too short?

    No- I had a five hour reception and it was just right.

    Yes- I had a five hour reception and it was too short.

    It could go either way good or bad

  • Post # 2
    146 posts
    Blushing bee
    • Wedding: November 2017

    That’s plenty of time- a few hours for eating and speeches and what have you and then a few for dancing. I think people feel obligated to stay for long Receptions- and this way you and your husband will get plenty of time at the end of the evening for each other 

    Post # 3
    120 posts
    Blushing bee
    • Wedding: May 2017

    Depends what you’re doing! Our reception was only around 3 and half hours but we didn’t do any of the “wedding stuff” like cake cutting, first dance, father-daughter, bouquet toss, none of that. Just food, music and hanging out. It was a good amount of time for us, we were exhausted haha. 

    Post # 4
    1829 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: April 2018

    That’s about what we are going to do. I want to end the night on a high note, not just a few people here and there. 


    Post # 5
    3723 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: November 2014

    It depends on what your vision is for your reception and what your guests expect. If you plan on partying and dancing late into the night then 5 hours is plenty. Ours was only about 3 1/2 but it wasn’t really a party atmosphere. People just mingled and enjoyed catching up with family and friends. 

    Post # 6
    439 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: September 2016

    Mine was between 4 and 5 hours and it was perfect. I couldn’t imagine it going any longer.

    Post # 7
    3045 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: September 2017 - Poppy Ridge Golf Course

    Our entire event will be 4 hours so 5 for just the reception seems more than sufficient to me. But we’re also skipping most of the traditional stuff. Food, music and hanging out sums it up nicely. 😆 Depends on what your timeline involves. Personally, I think you shouldn’t worry about an extra hour if its a strain on the budget or will put you over budget. Not worth it. 

    Post # 8
    1135 posts
    Bumble bee

    5 hours is plenty of time. You’ll find a lot of guests will leave after the cake is cut. No point in paying for an extra hour.

    Post # 9
    1478 posts
    Bumble bee

    I wish I was having a 5 hour reception! Ours is only 3 hours and I’m worried it will be too short since we are doing cake cutting, a first dance, and a few speeches. 

    Post # 10
    123 posts
    Blushing bee
    • Wedding: September 2017

    5 hours seems like more than enough time. Honestly, after 2 hours of dancing, I get pretty exhausted/sweaty/dehydrated and I’m ready to go take my makeup and fancy clothes off and take a shower. I’m also an introvert, so that colors my opinion. I can gear myself up for a party, but I have my limits, mentally and physically.

    Post # 11
    939 posts
    Busy bee

    I think anything longer than 5 is too long. 

    Post # 12
    1238 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: July 2017 - The Lodge at Little Seneca Creek

    I’ve never been to a reception longer than 4 hours. 5 hours seems really long, but if you’re doing a lot of special dances or have a lot of toasts or something, it might be fine. If not, I’d probably leave after 3 or 4 hours.

    Post # 13
    217 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: October 2018

    5 hours including cocktail hour? That is normal in my area.  A 6 hour reception would mean you and your guest are hardcore partiers or night owls depending on what time the party started.  I think 7 hours ( a cocktail hour and 6 hour reception) is torture for all parties involved. I am thinking of a schedule where the cocktail hour starts at 5 and dinner at 6.  a 6 hour reception would put you at midnight.  I cannot think of a single wedding I have been to that wasn’t over at that hour.  You and your bridal party have probably been up since 10 am getting ready so that is a long day.  My family would be up that late partying no question, but we are notorious night owls.  A lot of my cousins would be out at 11 pm so that they could go to atlantic city and gamble the night away!  If there are few stragglers you can always go to a local place and shut it down at 2 am, but there is no need to keep your wedding going that long because most guest will have left but you will be stuck paying a flat rate for the hour no matter who is present.

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