While a wedding is definitely centered around the bride and groom, it’s equally about the friends and family who pack up the SUV and drive to attend. With all the planning involved, there are so many things that impact the guests’ experiences. So, the question begs to be asked, what to wedding guests care about most? We combined our wedding expertise to discuss the top seven things wedding guests care about most:
1. The Tunes
Finding the right DJ should be a number one priority during the planning process. Music helps carry the mood throughout the entire wedding day, from before the ceremony all the way to send off. Your wedding DJ should be experienced enough to read the crowd and get them on the dance floor.
There are hundreds of wedding DJs in Phoenix and Chicago, so how do you know where to look? Make sure to research and read reviews before booking. Make sure to ask any potential DJ candidates questions like: Can you create a diverse playlist for my guests? What do you to make the day more fun? And how can you help MC throughout the day?
2. Where and When
Destination wedding are expensive for everyone involved, including your guests. While having a wedding take place on a Chicago rooftop sounds amazing, it could be out of your guests’ price point if they have to travel. While we know your big day isn’t cheap, it’s important to consider that the average wedding guest spends upwards of about $630. If your guests have to drive or fly, rent a car, and stay in a hotel, they might not be too keen on attending your big day.
There are some extravagant wedding venues out there. Venues today can be found on the tops of mountain, deep in the woods, and in the very corners of industrial cities. These venues make for great photos, but if guests need a four-wheel drive car and can’t drive an average vehicle, they might not be too pleased. No one wants their car to be damaged on the way to your amazing venue.
3. The Grub
Most people look forward to a good meal at the end of a long day. After traveling, mingling and even pre-dinner dancing, your guests will be hungry. While the idea of cocktail party weddings is a trendy way to cut costs, your guests might not be too happy with a few trays of appetizers.
It’s also important to consider how much your guests will be drinking. If you have an open bar, there needs to be a substantial supply of food to avoid an overindulgence on drinks. While everyone loves a good party, an over intoxicated guest might ruin the evening for everyone.
4. The Booze
Speaking of the bar… you’d be hard pressed to find a wedding guest that doesn’t appreciate an open bar. It’s expensive to offer a full, open bar, but there are ways to modify your open bar to save some cash.
If you’re on the fence about having an open bar, consider serving beer, wine and two signature cocktails! You can offer a “his and her drink” and serve up you and your significant other’s favorite cocktails. Guests will appreciate the personalization and the variety of choices.
5. Seating Situation
Seating arrangements are the most tedious part of wedding planning. The idea of comfortable seating hundreds of people in a way they would like can be overwhelming. The best thing to do it fit families together as best as possible and sit immediately family close to the head table.
While it might seem like a good idea to skip the seating chart all together, it’s not highly suggested. When there are 200 people trying to decide where to sit, you’ll end up with wasted space and people feeling left out.
The best tips for seating guests at a wedding reception so that you can keep your guests happy are:
– Sit families together and people with common interests.
– Do what you can to avoid seating guests by just filling space.
– Seat guests that might not know many people at a table they might enjoy.
– Seat immediately family closest to the head table.
6. Weather or not?
When planning a wedding so far in advance doesn’t allow you to see the forecast ahead of time, it’s still important to consider the timing. There are certain times of year that weather is more comfortable in specific locations. Consider this when planning for factors like indoor versus outdoor receptions and dress codes. For example, if your wedding is in the peak of the Phoenix summer, a black-tie dress code might not be reasonable. Men will overheat in a full tux, even if the reception is indoors.
In the long run, your guests are there to help you celebrate your big day. It’s important to consider the time and budget they put into travel plans. These simple considerations can truly help guests enjoy your day to the fullest extent. Even simple gestures can show your guests how much they’re appreciated. Happy wedding!
By: Abigail Golder