Would you be bothered by guests leaving very early?

posted 6 years ago in Reception
Post # 3
458 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

Yes I’d be super mad!

I’m surprised you say it was mainly family. The people I always see leaving early at weddings are parent’s friends.

Post # 4
4439 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: January 2013 - Harbourfront Grand Hall

@AnonymousCupcake:  Yes!  That would upset me, I’m glad you’re not letting it ruin your entire outlook on the wedding tho.

They should have at least stayed to talk to you, through the traditional dances and cake cutting (if that was after dinner).

I would expect this more out of older family members than friends!  I already know a few of FI’s family members with young children will jet as soon as dinner is done. *shrug*  What ya gonna do?

Post # 5
1460 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

Honestly, I wouldn’t be upset at all.  Not everyone has 5 hours or wants to spend 5 hours at a wedding/reception.  I’m home very little during the week so my weekends are my time to do things at home and/or just hang with my Darling Husband.  Also, people with kids never get a minute of rest even on the weekends and it’s really sometimes the only time they can spend any quality time with them. 

In a bride’s world the wedding and reception are the most important thing on that particular day.  In her guests’ worlds the same doesn’t hold true. 

Post # 6
3357 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I don’t know. I would at least hope they would stay until after dinner when everyone’s finished, not while everyone’s still eating. I had a few people leave early too, but most had children and were ILs’ friends

Post # 8
11234 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013

Yes, I would be really angry. We’ve always stayed at weddings no matter what. I’ve been to more than my fair share of boring weddings, but I always stay because it;s incredibly rude to leave early.

Post # 9
8392 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

Yep, I’d be annoyed. I think you should at least stay until the dancing gets going.

Post # 10
1399 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

@AnonymousCupcake:  Ugh. Yeah, that would upset me. If you’re not traveling for many hours that same night, don’t have small kids, aren’t elderly, or don’t have some medical/other issue, I think it’s rude to leave super early. 😮

Post # 11
5958 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: April 2018

Ok, I will confess that I’ve actually done this…twice, and I’ll happily tell you why, just so everyone has a little perspective into the mind of a wedding guest…and I’m not saying you are like either of the brides in question, but I’m not ashamed to admit that I’ll leave an event if I’m so inclined and properly motivated….after all, a reception is a party at which I am a guest, I decide when I’m finished being one.

The first time, I was still in college, and my entire family was invited to a traditional catholic mass wedding ceremony & reception…we’re not catholic, we’ve never been catholic, the ceremony took two hours and I couldn’t understand any of it, but whatever, they were married, on to the reception…we drove for 45 minutes just to get there, it was a ballroom, nice, the bar was open, rock on….two and a half hours later….the bride and groom saunter in after taking pictures and all of that….too bad the guests are drunk, starving and half asleep….do they serve dinner? NO!  They dim the lights and the bride starts dancing with her dad, her stepdad, her uncle, her cousin…the janitor…you get my drift…we started to fall asleep…so my Dad made an executive decision, we left, picked up pizza on the way home and that was that….

The other time, was an outdoor wedding at a remote family farm in June.  Ceremony was quick, we go looking for a place to sit, there aren’t enough tables for everyone…we elect to stand so the older guests and people with kids can sit.  It’s June, it’s hot, they serve dinner, it’s BBQ, not really something you can eat and hold standing up….plus it was horrifying to look at, this roasted pig on a table, with people in insulated gloves just pulling the meat out of it….so yeah, we left and went to the Keg for dinner.

I understand and appreciate the time, effort and money that goes into a wedding reception, I honestly do, but sometimes there’s such a difference in taste, timing or agendas that as a guest, we just have to leave, it’s not a slight against our generous hosts, it’s just not for us.


Post # 12
2781 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

Not really, as long as I managed to be able to speak to them before they left and they ate the meal I paid for I wouldn’t care. If you aren’t in the partying mood, or have other obligations to get to I’m glad they managed to at least come out and watch my vows and do some celebrating with us. If they RSVP’s yes for attendance, and only stayed for the ceremony, that would annoy me since they could have just as easily let me know they could only make the ceremony so I didn’t pay for their meals for nothing.

Post # 13
1992 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

@AnonymousCupcake:  ooo this would upset me too.  I saw this happen at a friend’s wedding where people started leaving right after they’d finished eating (not staying for the cake or family dances) and by the time they threw the garter/bouquet there were only about 15 people left! I felt sooooo sorry for her because it was literally two weeks after my wedding and I knew for a fact that she put a ton of effort into everything and paid the DJ for a long time and extended the venue time til midnight but everyone was gone by about 8:30… It was very sad. My Darling Husband was in the wedding party so we made sure to stay until they left and it was so sad because by the end of it, they were sort of apologizing that everyone left and thanking us for staying! They ended up telling us to go with about 1.5 hours left on their venue rental because the party was essentially over…

I had my wedding on a yacht so we lucked out cuz NO ONE was allowed to leave early… lol

But yeah, with all the planning and effort and thoughtfulness that goes into the wedding event, I would think people know to stay for at least the dinner, first dances & cutting of the cake. Those are the staple events of the reception and even with children waiting, I wouldn’t dream of leaving before those… 

You don’t have to shut the place down but it would be nice to show some respect for the bride and groom and their emotional/financial investment in the day by celebrating with them for at least a little after the dinner!  It would be understandable if they said goodbye and gave a reason but they clearly snuck out… the whole “eat & run” thing is NOT COOL!


Post # 14
1460 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

@AnonymousCupcake:  Just because it wouldn’t bother me doesn’t mean that I don’t understand you being upset.  At least they did come to witness your marriage and spend time with you.  That is what’s really important.  🙂

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