Larger gatherings and celebrations, such as a wedding, are often surrounded by additional micro events that can get lost in the shuffle of the overall planning. This can leave brides wondering what to tell their out-of-town guests to do when they arrive or before their departure.
Planning your nuptials is both exciting and at times stressful, but in the middle of planning it is important to make sure that every guest feels special and taken care of during their stay. In this article, learn how to ensure that your out-of-town guests have the best possible experience before, during, and after your wedding.
Details to Prepare before the wedding and your guests’ arrival.
In addition to sending out invitations early to give your guests plenty of time to plan their travel arrangements, offering a list of local recommendations for restaurants and attractions in your community will help guests feel right at home when they arrive. This list can be emailed to your out-of-town guests, included on your wedding registration website for easy on-the-go access, or dispersed upon your guest’s arrival in a welcome basket. Providing this information ahead of time will help guests feel at ease and help them to maximize their time during their trip.
Weddings run on a tight timeline and depending on the size of the wedding you are limited to the amount of time you can spend with out-of-town guests. Consider hosting a welcome cocktail reception at the hotel where your guests plan to stay.
While you are reserving a room block for guests, ask the hotel’s sales associate to help you connect with their food and beverage manager or events coordinator to reserve a space in the hotel. Often hotels have a bar or outdoor courtyard that can accommodate a small welcome reception, but it is best to coordinate this through the hotel prior to the arrival of guests. Hosting a small welcome reception will allow guests to get acquainted with one another and excited about the big day.
How to host guests during the wedding.
It is true the bride and groom often do not fully experience all the details of their wedding because they are on a rigid schedule from the vows to the first dance. Keeping this point in mind, it is important to put a few hospitality markers in place before your guests arrive that will help make the day-of go exceptionally well, such as providing transportation for your guests to the ceremony and reception venues.
Eliminate the hassle of guests parking their own cars or guests paying for valet by providing transportation from the hotel to the wedding venue. Another option is to offer a credit on a rideshare app, such as Lyft or Uber.
As you welcome guests to your wedding and thank them for celebrating this monumental occasion, end each conversation by introducing the guest to someone you think they may not know at the reception. This will help keep the conversations flowing and encourage co-mingling among the recently joined families and groups of friends.
Making plans post-nuptials.
Consider hosting a brunch the morning after the wedding to give everyone a chance to recap and relive some of the best highlights from the wedding. While you may be exhausted, ask a bridesmaid or your in-laws to host a small gathering the next day. A casual brunch will allow you and your spouse to set aside time to say goodbye and thank your guests for their attendance at your wedding.
Just as important as the final goodbyes and thank yous is helping your out-of-town guests with their final travel arrangements. Make sure you have a plan for your out-of-town guests to get back to the airport after the wedding. Offer to arrange for transportation or provide directions so they can get to their destination safely.
By following these helpful hospitality tips, you are sure to be the best hostess to your out-of-town guests and guarantee that they have an enjoyable experience at your wedding! Save this article for inspiration and hosting details to include during your wedding planning.