(Closed) Wanting guest to arrive early to the ceremony?

posted 6 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
Member
1430 posts
Bumble bee

Is there a reason you want guests there 30 minutres before the ceremony starts? Is it because you want to start right on time and are assuming people are going to be late?  In my experience people are alwayyyyys late. I made it known how important it was to start my ceremony right on time but in the end people were still late and my ceremony started late. Looking back I wish I had said my ceremony started 30 minutes earlier so that it would have started the time I actually wanted.

Post # 4
Member
8670 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

@mrs.stormylove:  I don’t think people are always late. Everyone arrived prior to our 3pm kick off time for our wedding! I guess it depends on the people you know!

Op in relation to your invite put the time that you want your guests to arrive but I would put half an hour earlier maybe 15 mins? I would be pretty pissed to be sitting around for half an hour because I am always early (15-30mins for a wedding) so I could be waiting around for an hour for your wedding to start!

Post # 5
Member
443 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

maybe you could put “1:30 for 2:00”? Its very common to see that on invitations here. Perhaps provide drinks for people who do arrive at 1:30 so they don’t feel like they are waiting around.

Post # 6
Member
3304 posts
Sugar bee

I put the correct time on my invites but spread via word of mouth that the ceremony will start on time and late guests will be locked out (or else they will run into me as I go to walk the aisle). We will probably start a few minutes late just in case but most of my guests are good about being on time. Worse thing, they will have to wait in the lobby until I have walked down the aisle.

Post # 7
Member
7685 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Put the true ceremony start time. People know (or should know) that when it’s a wedding you need to arrive on time or you’ll miss the bride coming down the aisle. Like @armychica06:  is planning on, I arrived a few minutes late just to be sure.

The trouble with “1.30 for 2.00 start” is that, at most weddings, there is nothing to do between 1.30 and 2.00, except sit in seats and wait. “1.30 for 2.00 start” is usually done for events where that half hour is for appetisers and mingling. If I was a guest and came at 1.30, and there was nothing to do except sit in a chair and wait half an hour, I’d be pretty annoyed.

Post # 8
Member
51 posts
Worker bee

Most people in my experience arrive early to weddings, so now on top of waiting 30 minutes, there are likely people that will be waiting 45+ minutes. You will have grumbly guests.

Post # 9
Member
7685 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

If you want to be sure people are there before 2.00, you could put slightly stronger language in the invitation, like “Ceremony starts at 2.00” or even something like “We request that guests be seated before the 2.00 start”.

Post # 10
Member
2239 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

I would hope that people know that when the invite says starting at x time they’re supposed to be there by then O_O.

They better be or the show will go on without them

Post # 11
Member
591 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

I am just anticipating that we will start 5-10 minutes late due to stragglers.  

Post # 12
Member
4192 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: July 2012 - Baltimore Museum of Industry

We put on our web site, and let people know by word of mouth, that the venue was open for guests 1/2 hour before the ceremony, and that the ceremony would start promptly at 6pm, the time on our invites. And at 6pm, the first groomsman was escorting my step-mom down the aisle.

There were a couple of latecomers who had to wait until my Dad and I had walked down the aisle until they were seated, and some other guests who missed part of the ceremony. *We* were ready and our family was there- there was no reason to wait.

Post # 13
Member
1092 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

After sending out our invitations for our wedding last year I asked my then Fiance “How much time do you want to give guests to be late”? His answer? “None”! I think the look on my face made him re-think and then said “Ok, 10 or 15 minutes. I definately don’t want to start 30 or 45 minutes. If their late, their late”.

It’s very rare a wedding actually starts at time the on the invite. If the bride doesn’t get ready at the venue/church and has to deal with traffic the ceremony will be delayed. I know our wedding started a bit late, I arrived a few minutes before start time to give the photographer time to take pictures. We wanted our guests who arrived early to be comfortable while waiting so we opened the bar before the ceremony. Our wedding and reception were at the same location making this easy. We did have some straglers and some that totally missed the ceremony but if you wait for every single guest to arrive your wedding could be 2 hours late.

I think you should indicate the time the ceremony starts, period. If you put “Please arrive 15-30 minutes early” some guests may wonder “Why do they want me there early? Is something else going on?” or you may insult some guests. Some people are notoriously late and no amount of wording will get them there any earlier.

Post # 14
Member
1830 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 2014

I would just put “Ceremony will start promptly at 2:00 pm.” To me, that indicates that I better be finding my seat around 1:50 at the latest.

Sometimes people think that the start time is a suggestion and that they are free to meander around until somebody yells at them to sit. I hate that.

Post # 15
Member
3267 posts
Sugar bee

I wouldn’t put anything but the start time on the invitations.

Perhaps if people stopped catering to people who are late (and RUDE) and they started missing out, they would modify their behaviour.  Always catering to those rudenicks, just reenforces that they can be late and have no consequences.

I wouldn’t wait for any rude guest who wasn’t my mom or his parents/siblings.  I was so busy getting married, I didn’t even notice who was there until afterwards.

I would be upset as a guest (who is ALWAYS on time) to be deceived about the time.  I would arrive 15-30 minutes ahead of what was on the invitations.  If I then was punished by having to wait for a full hour (my 30 + your 30), I would be quite unhappy.

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