(Closed) Late comers – How to handle them

posted 7 years ago in Etiquette
  • poll: Should late comers be forced to wait?
    Make them wait - their invitation had the same time as everyone elses. : (18 votes)
    20 %
    Allow them to enter - its the nice thing to do, they are your guests : (5 votes)
    6 %
    Allow them to enter at an appropriate time/break in the ceremony : (65 votes)
    74 %
  • Post # 3
    91 posts
    Worker bee
    • Wedding: October 2011 - Catholic church followed by a botanical conservatory

    Hmm… IMO it’s really weird to have them trailing after the bride. If I were so late like that, I would try to sneak in a side door or wait until the bride is down the aisle. Going in right after her just makes it even more obvious you’re late!

    Post # 4
    1137 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: September 2011

    Those late to my wedding stood in the back and watched and did not go to their seats. I find this to be the most appropriate, or at least wait until their is a ‘breaking point’ they can enter.

    A friend had a huge church wedding, and those late sat in the back section.

    I don’t see walking to your seat right after the bride appropriate.

    Post # 6
    2442 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: April 2011

    Just went to a wedding yesterday, and thanks to Darling Husband we were late.  We arrived when the bridal party was standing in the lobby waiting to enter the sanctuary.  We stood out of the way in the back of the lobby (along with the other latecomers) and after the processional and the bride was already up front with her dad, we all scooted in the back and walked down the outside aisles (none of us went down the center aisle) and sat down on the ends of the pews.  We were all seated within 10-20 seconds.  It almost seemed as if they saved those seats for latecomers. If that was the case, that was very smart!  

    Post # 7
    2542 posts
    Sugar bee

    I was in a wedding once where there were quite a few latecomers that showed up while the bridal party was about to walk down the aisle. We just waited until they got themselves seated before we went down the aisle, making us late as well. The bride didn’t seem to mind but I thought it was extremely rude. If I were a latecomer I would wait until the bride had gotten to the front and then seat myself as quietly as possible. Barring horrible unforseen circumstances, you should always be 15 mins early to a wedding In My Humble Opinion.

    Post # 8
    243 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: November 2011

    You could also consider having ushers to “help out” or police latecomers so they don’t come in at inappropriate moments.

    Post # 9
    2854 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: May 2012

    Wow, how awkward! I’m hoping our event guy will just gently push them into the back rows.

    Post # 11
    3798 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: June 2012

    Our venue is located on a hill, and you have to drive past the ceremony location to park. Our coordinator told us that right before the ceremony, they block off the top parking spots and wait at the entrance to have people park before the ceremony location and walk up to the location and sit in the back if they are late. That way, noone notices latecomers and noone is driving past/walking up the asile with me.

    Can you do some sort of alternate plan like this? Ask the DOC to have a staff member look out for late comers at the entrance and direct them to where they will not disturb?

    Post # 12
    13096 posts
    Honey Beekeeper
    • Wedding: July 2010

    I think they should be allowed to enter but they should be forced to wait until the processional is complete and the “main” part of the ceremony has started.  At that point, they can quietly sneak into the furthest back seats.

    Post # 13
    5977 posts
    Bee Keeper

    I was late to a wedding once b/c the directions to the church were horrible and we got lost for over an hour. When we finally got there, the bride was just about to walk down the aisle. We waited for her to be all the way down before we snuck up the side of the church.

    Sometimes it’s not your guests’ fault. We left so that we could be there an hour to 45 minutes early and ended up being late. Who could have predicted that?? I think not allowing them entry isn’t very fair, especially when you’re already down the aisle.

    Post # 14
    6661 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: May 2010

    We were so convinced this would not happen to us because all of our guests were either from Out of Town and would be checking in at the hotel earlier in the day to change first if not the night before OR people lived locally but were very familiar with the traffic or train situation to get to our ceremony on time.

    Of course, there still was at least one guest not in the church when we started. My DOC just held her back until the entire procession was complete and I guess finally let her in afterwards, but she wasn’t in any of the pictures of me walking down the aisle so I know she didn’t follow me down or anything.

    Post # 15
    10287 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper
    • Wedding: October 2011

    Oh hell no! I would have been none too pleased if someone literally rode my coat tails down the aisle. You’re right, if the processional has started, they need to either wait until the ceremony has ended or try to sneak in quietly after the bride has made her way down the aisle.

    We had a few late arrivals that got there right as we were lining up to start the processional. We let them take their seats before starting but had they got there a few minutes later, they would have been waiting. 

    Post # 16
    2157 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: July 2012

    Wow. Definitely rude.  The bride’s walk down the aisle is supposed to be her shining moment, not to be shared with late comers!  I would have my guests wait until an appropriate moment in the ceremony where there was a break and then they could enter.

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