(Closed) To seat or not to seat: that is the question!

posted 6 years ago in Reception
Post # 3
6892 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: March 2012

I’m sort of in the middle of this dilemma right now too, although I think I know which way I’m going to go. I think we’re going to just reserve family tables and a wedding party table, other than that….sit where you like! We’re having a fairly informal wedding though. 🙂

Post # 4
4046 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

I think you either need lots of extra tables, or at least assigned tables. I’m guessing you were popular in middle school and never had that horrible feeling of wondering around with a tray full of food and looking for a place to sit at the same time? It’s so nice to have assigned seats so people don’t have to guess, and larger parties and families don’t get broken up but can sit together.

Post # 5
6248 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 1900

As a guest I always prefer having assigned seating. It eliminates the awkwardness of scrambling to find a place to sit and who to sit with.

Post # 6
562 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

Our wedding is fairly laid back (outdoor ceremony, buffet style, giant bonfire :)) so assigned seating doesn’t really make sense for us.  We are, however, reserving a bride and groom immediate family table and a friend table.  I don’t think I’ve ever been to a wedding with assigned seating now that I think about it!

Post # 7
4824 posts
Honey bee

You can get away without a table assignment (you dont need to do an actual chart for the individual seat) if you 

1) have a casual venue

2) do not have a large reception (# of people)

3) have extra table (s) 

otherwise I think you should have one to avoid

1) parties/families being split up because there are only 3 seats and there are 4 of them.

2) People dont feel the need to rush and “claim” their seat which can be annoying, a hassle and honestly not very elegant

3) people stealing chairs from other tables to make their party fit at a table



Post # 8
184 posts
Blushing bee


I have been involved in well over a hundred weddings of various sizes and have never been to a wedding with a seating chart, escort cards, etc.—-but in the south we do things differently.

My daughter’s wedding had about 450 attendees and we had no issues with seating and no seating chart.  We had high top tables for standing, formal tables for seating (only reserved one and that was for grandparents), and a dance floor & photo booth. There were so many different things to do and the food was buffet style.  

Most people ate then went to dancing and photo booth or mingling with other guests. We did not want them to feel like they had to sit in assigned seats and stay there.


Post # 9
3771 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: December 1999

I definately prefer a seating chart as a guest. The rush to grab a table with those you came with is chaotic. Also, if you don’t know many there it is super awkward to have to ask to sit at a table with someone. If you are having even a semi-formal wedding do your guests a favor and do a seating chart. The only time I wouldnn’t do one is if it were a very casual backyard BBQ type wedding a PP mentioned.

Post # 10
1446 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I’m kind of having the same dilemma-I much prefer having a seating chart because I really hate the awkwardness of finding a table and most of my guests are not going to know each other that well. However, my wedding is very informal so I feel like a seating chart would be out of place. I say if you don’t want one, don’t do it!

Post # 11
13063 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

I also prefer a seating chart as a guest.  I always get so flustered when it’s free-for-all seating because I feel like someone may get left out, or that I may end up sitting with people I have nothing in common with, or something like that.  I do agree that the more formal occasions require it, but I think they’re good to do at any type of event.

Post # 12
5657 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: February 2012

I prefer a seating chart as a guest, so that is what we’re doing. I actually just arranged the seating chart this weekend and I’m with you, it was a HUGE pain in the ass, but I know every guest will now be sitting in the best possible spot for them and we avoid all the problems PPs mentioned. We’re having a fairly casual sugar shack wedding.

Post # 13
1820 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

Arranging a seating chart is a huge pain, but it makes you a much better hostess.  It is very awkward for people to have to find seats or go around and ask whether seats are taken. 

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