Have you ever attended a wedding and left thinking “Why did they do that?” or “I wish that had been different”? Of course you have! Guests’ wedding complaints are not at all uncommon and are often simple planning tweaks that can make a world of difference in your guests’ experience. Here are some tips from our member, Plan It Event Design & Management.
1. Being seated with people you don’t know
Assigned seating is never easy and can prove to be one of the most difficult decisions in planning your wedding. Remember to seat friends & families together as best you can so that your guests may be more comfortable and in the end, have more fun!
2. Older guests being seated near the DJ… and their speakers
It never fails that we find the grandparents’ table right next to the DJ. Most DJ’s will have their speakers right next to their setup and that is where the music is the loudest. Although lowering the volume may seem like an easy fix, it will make your older guests much more comfortable to be seated further away.
3. Cutting the cake too late in the night
Everyone wants to see you cut the cake, it is one of the most cherished traditions and of course, leads to the “sweetest” part of the night! When putting together your timeline, it is important to remember that your grandparents may not be able to stay until the 11pm send-off! By moving the cake cutting ceremony to earlier in the night, you allow more guests to enjoy it.
4. Not enough or shuttles that come too late
If you plan to serve alcohol at your wedding, it is beneficial to hire a transportation company to shuttle your guests to and from the venue and the hotel. This is often a service that is greatly appreciated, but like we said in the previous tip, some guests may not be able to stay until that 11pm send-off! Consider having the shuttle make trips every 30 minutes or hour once dinner is over.
5. Speeches and toasts that are too long and unprepared
Make sure to let your maid of honor & best man know to keep their speeches at no more than 2 minutes each to ensure that they don’t run too long. This is one of the most common wedding complaints we hear. Not everyone wants to hear the embarrassing stories about the groom’s bachelor days in college… including the groom!
6. Inconvenient date
Look ahead and make sure that you aren’t planning to have your wedding on Super Bowl Sunday or during important religious holidays. Unless you plan to have a Super Bowl theme, you will have husbands, boyfriends, and brothers buried in their phones most of the night!
7. Too much time between the ceremony & reception
It is super important to get as many of those great pictures while everyone is together in one place but that can lead to all of your other guests sitting around and drinking too much! A great way to avoid this is to do a first look before the ceremony and get all of bridal party photos and portraits done before the ceremony. That way you can do a few family portraits during cocktail hour and get back to the party.
8. Bad food or not enough of it
Weddings are expensive, we know that! But your caterer is not something you want to skimp on! Do your guests a favor and take your time when hiring a caterer. There is nothing worse than the food running out before the last tables are released to the buffet.
9. Out of date traditions
We have all seen them, the bouquet toss, the garter removal and toss, the money dance, and the list goes on! Guests’ wedding complaints are that they don’t like to be pressured into participating or pay for a dance with the bride. Instead, try something new like presenting the bouquet to your mother or grandmother and inviting them to the dance floor for a dance.
10. Lack of communication
Last but certainly not least, communicate with your guests! Provide directions to the venue, let them know ahead of time if you will have a cash bar and not an open bar, and don’t forget to thank them! Take time to visit everyone at the reception to thank them for coming and send thank you notes for your gifts.
Of course, you can’t please everyone and there will always be things that guests hate but we hope that these tips will help you have a successful and stress-free wedding but truly the best advice we can give you is to hire a planner or coordinator! It is our job to help you through these decisions and allow you to have the best day ever!