5 Things You Need to Know About Wedding Rehearsal Dinners
Have you thought about your wedding rehearsal day yet? It’s easy to get so caught up in planning for the day of your wedding that you forget to plan the days before and after. Much like your wedding day, the wedding rehearsal and rehearsal dinner require careful planning to successfully coordinate.
To help you get started, here are five things you’ll need to know for planning the big day-before-your-day:
* Who pays?
o Let’s get this one out of the way first: According to tradition, the groom’s family pays for and hosts your wedding rehearsal dinner party. However—as with most wedding traditions today—this isn’t a hard-and-fast etiquette rule. Depending on budget, funds, availability and preference, costs might be shared by the couple only, a couple and the groom’s parents, parents on both sides, or a close friend or family member.
* When should you start planning a rehearsal dinner?
o Many venues require you to book 4-6 months in advance, so it’s best to start your planning at least six months out. You’ll likely need a rough head count and/or guest list created to plan around food and space requirements. You’ll also need to book and confirm that you have a rehearsal space to use prior to the dinner party (whether that’s at your wedding venue, at a separate location, or at your rehearsal dinner location).
* Who should you invite?
o At a minimum, you’ll want to invite anyone who attended the rehearsal itself, immediate family members, and your wedding party and their dates. Etiquette suggests that you also invite those involved with your wedding (such as your officiant and wedding coordinator), extended family (like aunts, uncles and possibly cousins) and out-of-towners—but that’s totally up to you!
* When and how do you send rehearsal dinner invites?
o You have a few options for sending out invites. You can include them with your wedding invitations, or you can send them separately. Etiquette calls for formal invitations, but if your venue is less formal (i.e., a backyard bar-b-que), you could consider an online invitation. Either way, you’ll want to get your invitation out around the same time as your wedding invitations so your guests can adequately plan.
* What do you do at a rehearsal dinner?
o Rehearsal dinners are used as an opportunity for the couple, family and friends to spend extra time with each other while everyone is in town (and before things get too hectic at the wedding). A traditional rehearsal dinner includes the couple thanking family and the bridal party for their support, personal toasts, dinner and exchange of gifts to family and the bridal party.
with love & style from: Sandy D. (our lovely newlywed and bridal blogger extraordinaire)