While you probably don’t want to be the bride that sent her wedding guests a list of demands before her wedding, it is your special day, and you are allowed to ask your guests not to do certain things.
As the bride and groom, you’ve spent hours planning and put a lot of money into your big day. It’s not unreasonable to have certain expectations. While you probably shouldn’t go as far as putting as a monetary requirement on gifts, there are a few things it is perfectly ok to ask your guests not to do.
Take Pictures During the Ceremony
In a world where our phones are often an extension of our arms, many people take it upon themselves to take pictures of every moment of their lives. While this is their choice, if they are taking pictures of your ceremony, they could block the view of the photographer, whom you paid to take pictures of your special day. We’ve all seen the pictures of a bride coming down the aisle, blocked from view by the phones sticking out to snap her picture.
To avoid this, it’s perfectly fine to add a note to invites or a sign outside that asks guests to please let the photographer take pictures and keep their phones put away during the ceremony.
It’s also ok to ask guests to wait before posting any photos on social media. Many couples would rather their photos be the first images the world sees of their big day. Or, you can specify that no photos of the bride, or of the ceremony, hit social but pictures of the reception are ok.
Tip: If you don’t want guests to post on social, it would be a good idea to opt-out of the wedding hashtag craze.
Bring a Guest
While many wedding invitations list a plus one as an option for guests who aren’t married, many couples opt to ask guests not to bring a date.
With dinner costs, and seating, and venue capacities, it can get expensive and complicated to keep adding guests to a list. If you’re not married, and your invitation has your name and no indicator of a guest or a place to write in their name, that means the bride and groom would prefer you to ride solo. And, as the bride and groom, this is a perfectly acceptable request.
Come To The Ceremony
Yes, you read that right. It’s ok to ask your guests not to come to your ceremony. As wedding costs rise, many couples are choosing to have very small ceremonies and then celebrate with their extended friends and family during a larger reception.
As the couple, it’s ok to hold a small ceremony with immediate family and ask the rest of your guests to join you at a later time. This might mean having the ceremony one day and party later or stating certain arrival times on the invitations if you would like some guests to come later for the party. Just be clear on the invitation about the type of event they will be attending.
If you have a strict schedule to keep, it’s ok to make it clear to your guests that they need to be on time. You can either ask them to arrive 10-15 minutes early or just cushion your start time a little. Or just let them know, if they arrive after the start time, they will be asked to wait outside until the ceremony is over.
Just remember that no matter how you phrase it, some people may still be late.
If you and your significant other have been together for a long time, you might not need the typical wedding presents. If this a second wedding, it might feel awkward to accept gifts. If you’re having a destination wedding, you may not want to ask guests to pay more than they already are. Whatever your reasons, it’s ok to ask your guests not to bring a gift to your wedding.
Tip: If you really don’t want gifts, suggest alternate ways they can show love like donating to a charity in your name.
If you need more wedding planning resources, check out more of our blogs or contact us today to start putting together your dream wedding. You can reach our event coordinators by email or phone at 877-545-1002