(Closed) Wedding differences between countries….

posted 7 years ago in Traditions
Post # 3
1335 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2013 - Kempinski San Lawrenz, Gozo

I live in Malta. here’s what’s different:


  • We don’t do STD’s


  • no bridal showers


  • engagement, pre wedding and post wedding shoots (personally we’re not doing any of those)


  • weddings are almost always in the evening. where I come from, mass starts at 5.30 pm, wedding goes on till about midnight


  • in a lot of weddings, transport involves either an antique car or horse-draw carriage (not me!)


  • DIY weddings are extremely rare (i LOVE DIY)


  • wedding gowns are ALWAYS elaborate and hardly ever sheath or empire line. (except mine!)


  • most boyfriends don’t propose. They just agree on an engagement date and bless the engagement rings at church. (mine proposed – yay!)



  • the dessert table almost always includes fruit sculpture and chocolate fountain (we’re having tea party desserts)


  • church music is almost always Ave Maria


  • hen parties are often done at hard rock cafe


  • ceremony is always in a church, reception is most often standing, with finger food.


  • typical songs at a wedding: Congratulations, From this moment, amazed, anything by celine dion.


  • a few days before the wedding, bride and groom meet guests at their parents’ house to recieve gifts. 


I hate the lack of originality…. :/


needless to say, We’re breaking most of the rules. My family doesn’t quite get it, but i don’t care.

Post # 4
5011 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2012

@lisha_1988: In the UK, there’s a two tiered invitation system: day invitations and evening invitations. Most couples get married early-to-mid afternoon and have a champagne reception then “wedding breakfast” during the afternoon after which evening guests arrive for a dance (disco and/or ceilidh usually in Scotland).

Engagement rings tend to be much smaller and there is less focus on size than in the USA.

Free bars are very rare (you have to pay per drink and that can run to tens of thousands of pounds if you’re foolish enough to do it in Scotland).

In England, you’re very restricted as to where you can get married (less so in Scotland).

Bridal showers are an absolute no-no in the UK. We do stag dos (bachelor parties) and hen nights (bachelorette parties).

In the north of Scotland, there is a tradition called “Blackening” where the bride or groom is taken out, covered with something sticky (often treacle) and then feathers (or cornflakes) then paraded through the streets with people banging saucepans around them.

Post # 6
838 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

@SpecialSundae: definately agree wih the ring thing. Also its more often than not that the men will wear a morning suit,which is jacket,waistcoat,shirt trousers,cravat(sp?) In the US theres much more variety I think.  Theres usually no rehearsal/dinner either,the night before is reserved for nervous panic only!

ETA:what is the reasoning behind the “blackening”? Ive heard of it but not the tradition as to why

Post # 7
5011 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2012

@kimbo89: It’s kilts rather than morning suits up here. I do love morning suits but they’re definitely more an English thing.

I’m not sure about the whys of the blackening. Stag dos used to be pretty humiliating (sometimes they still are) so it’s really just a more primitive version of that.

Post # 8
5011 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2012

@kimbo89: It’s kilts rather than morning suits up here. I do love morning suits but they’re definitely more an English thing.

I’m not sure about the whys of the blackening. Stag dos used to be pretty humiliating (sometimes they still are) so it’s really just a more primitive version of that.

Post # 9
174 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

In Ireland:

We don’t really do Save-The-Date Cards

We don’t really do bridal showers (though it is becoming more popular)

Engagement rings are smaller and the size is not as important as it is in the US

Weddings last for ages and don’t usually finish up until early the next morning! (one of the reasons we decided to do it here instead of the States haha!) 

We don’t do engagement shoots

Brides pay for the bridesmaids dresses


Post # 10
217 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

In Puerto Rico (at least the rural part I’m from)

  • We don’t do Save-The-Date Cards

  • We have no idea what Thank You Notes are

  • Brides clearly state in the invites that they want cash gifts (All the weddings I have been to, in my 22 year on this island, have specifically asked for cash gifts. I didn’t even know it was against “etiquette” until I found WB)

  • There is no such thing as a wedding registry (Mostly due to the fact that all the big chain stores, Macy’s, BBB etc. are on the eastern part of the island, almost 3 hours from where I live)

  • Everything is done in Spanish (Ceremony, invites, music etc.)

  • No rehearsal dinner or morning after brunch, bridal showers are uncommon

  • Lots and lots of liquor

Post # 11
97 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

In Germany:


  • traditionally we don’t do Save-The-Date Cards but in the last few years some do

  • we don’t have bridal showers

  • traditionally there’s a Polterabend before the wedding but some combine it with bachelor/bachelorett party or even with the wedding

  • traditionally we don’t have bridesmaids or groomsmen, just witnesses

  • we need to be legally married (in the court house or so) before we can have a ceremony (in a church or so)

  • some priests tell you what music is appropriate and what you aren’t allowed to play 🙁

  • traditionally the engagement ring is a plain rind which is worn on the left hand and is put on the right hand during the ceremony (husband and wife wear matching rings) but nowadays most brides insist on also having a diamond ring


Post # 12
7293 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2011


At time of engagement , both the man and woman exchange, which will be their wedding ring. It is worn on the left hand until switched at the ceremony to the right.

The Argentine wedding process has three main events: The wedding shower, the formal ceremony, and the wedding day.

The Wedding Shower: After the engagement announcement, family and friends organize a wedding shower sprinkled with surprises, tricks, and prendas.  Although this is a joint party, the bride and groom may choose to have individual showers.

The Formal Ceremony: The second event, noted as the formal ceremony, is where the couple signs their marriage certificate at the registry office.  Two individuals, cherished by the bride and groom, serve as witnesses whom afterwards join a petite group of guests in rice throwing and celebration.  The signing usually takes place a day before the third event, the wedding day.

The Wedding Day: This is when the bride and groom journey down the aisle linked arm and arm with their parents and traditionally with no bridal party.  To demonstrate their dutiful yet loving support for their children, the groom’s mother and bride’s father remain standing next to their son and daughter throughout the ceremony.  The exchanging of rings has taken place prior to the wedding day ceremony.  However, the priest acknowledges the rings with his blessings and the couple switches them from their right to their left hands.

More Details: The extravagance of an Argentine wedding day reception is reflected through elegant attire, tango and folk music, illustrious meat based meals, and the “sobremesa”  (or after-hours celebration).  Escorted by her new husband, the bride will be dressed in a beautiful white gown paired with a traditional blue petticoat for good luck.  The couple immediately dances their wedding waltz and unwraps gifts in the presence of their guests.  The celebration is then opened to all in attendance where they alternate a dance with each course of the meal.  Helado and cake are often served to fulfill the guests’ sweet tooth, however; the wedding cake serves as more than just a dessert.

Tradition Idea:The wedding cake plays a central role in a traditional wedding game. The cake is decorated with ribbons, each having a fate defining gift attached to its end.  Each single woman in attendance, pulls a ribbon off of the cake.  The one who receives the ring is believed to be the next to get married.  A similar game is one in which the bride wears multiple garters that she gives away one by one to the single women.  It is not uncommon for the reception’s festivities to conclude with the next morning’s sunrise when often a continental breakfast is served.

Post # 13
233 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2012

I live in the US, but grew up in the Caribbean. The wedding industry here and many traditions in the US feel like money-making schemes instead of a way to celebrate a union. 

My fiance did not get down on one knee and propose w/ a ring. Instead, we both decided to get married next year. I also don’t have a ring yet, but he’s going to get me one and is being secretive about it. The first two things that people here ask when they find out that you’re engaged (besides, “when’s the date?”) are “How did he propose?” and “Can I see the ring?” I have non-traditional answers to both of those questions: “He didn’t propose” and “I don’t have a ring.” These questions have made both Fiance and myself uncomfortable even though we are both somewhat anti-tradition. 

I learn as I go along about the wedding customs here in the US. Some are

  • Save the Dates and Invitations. I once got a quote for well over a thousand dollars for these invitations and programs. Needless to say, we didnt’ go with that company, but I went with a cheaper option and did some DIY.
  • Engagement rings. There are even rules about how much it should cost–I think something like 3 paychecks or something like that.
  • Lighting – nope
  • limousines – maybe not
  • $2000 + photography including engagement session (we’re doing this)
  • Wedding planner (we have one, but she’s a friend doing it for a low cost)

We both feel that we are going to make our wedding our own without much of the “extras”.

Post # 14
1813 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: February 2012

I know it’s bad, but to take on some control for my wedding to my Greek husband, we have said quite a few lies to his mother about Welsh traditions just so that we get to have our own way.

Post # 15
1335 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2013 - Kempinski San Lawrenz, Gozo

@MsFrancez: haha we ask for cash in our invitations too!!!


@cuddleBee: same here 🙁 priests only let us have slow mopey church music.


Other traditions:

  • in malta weddings are all about the food. LOTS AND LOTS OF FOOD = great wedding. everything else doesn’t matter.
  • we have witnesses AND bridesmaids and groomsmen
  • there’s ALWAYS a free bar at weddings, with a huge variety.

Oh and is it still common for the groom to remove the bride’s garter at the wedding? it always happens here. The bachelor who catches the garter then puts it on the woman who catches the bouquet.

Post # 16
1714 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2016

In India, it depends on which religion you are part of. My family are Hindu, and even Hindu weddings differ from state to state. I’ll try to explain the differences in Hindu ceremonies:

Dress: Normally it is NOT white. Hindus wear white to funerals. In North India, it’s usually a heavily embroidered red gagra choli, or sari, or even salwaar kameez (especially if you’re from the Punjab region). In South India, for the actual wedding function, a very simple coloured sari is worn. During the various pre and post-wedding ceremonies, a LOT of saris and clothes are worn.  

Invited people: Everyone is invited. Literally. You will get random strangers joining the wedding procession. On average you can expect to find more than 300 people at an Indian wedding. I know for the most recent one I went to, there were about 500 people and the majority of those were my family lol!

Pre-wedding party: I know of one type of ceremony where all the women get together for some fun, and to spend time with the bride before she is married. It’s called a Mehndi ceremony (not sure if you know what henna is, but that’s what mehndi is). They’ll dance to music, crack jokes, put mehndi on each other’s hands, etc. 

Then each wedding has their own specific ‘quirks’, like little wedding games or whatnot. These vary from region to region though. 

Normally food is all catered for, and there isn’t a wedding cake. You’ll just find a LOT of Indian sweets and whatnot. And trust me, there will be enough food at an Indian wedding to feed an ARMY!

I also know in the South, they don’t wear engagement/wedding rings. I know South Indian women have a necklace called a Mangal Sutra, which is kind of the equivalent. You buy it only after marriage though. Also, some regions get various things done to show that they are married, i.e. pierce their noses or whatnot. 

The time that a wedding happens at depends on what the Priest said is the most ‘auspicious time’ to conduct the ceremony at. And everything revolves around this. If the auspicious time is passed, then they will have to reschedule it. I know some people are VERY superstitious, especially rural people and the older generation.

I know with a lot of ‘semi-arranged’ marriages, there isn’t a proposal. More a mutual agreement by both people and both families that the wedding will take place. 

I can’t think of any more actually, but if you want to know more, just pm me!

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