Little girls are groomed to plan their wedding day their entire lives. They imagine their special day and focus on how to make that dream come true. Sometimes brides forget that a wedding is only as enjoyable as the experience given to the guests.

This summer we have three weddings on the books, last summer I planned my own wedding, and the year before I was Maid of Honor in my best friend’s wedding. Needless to say, I LOVE WEDDINGS. After being a bride, bridesmaid and a guest I have a better understanding of how to make weddings enjoyable for everyone including the long lost guests you are paying to have attend your big day!

The guest is often forgotten about when it’s time to budget. Brides think, “Where can I cut $$ and not give up my $200 veil?” Well, from a guests perspective there are 5 things that make or break a wedding.
Hierarchy of Wedding Guest Needs
In order of importance starting from bottom to top (similar to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs) I have created this handy visual to help you understand what matter most to a wedding guest.

Alcohol

Free alcohol makes every wedding guest grin from ear to ear, but it can also mean someone taking it just a little too far. Our wedding was open bar: beer, wine and a champagne toast. Our guests were delighted and we didn’t break the bank, which meant a good time all around. Even if it’s only for an hour, guests love free booze.

Food

Catering is always expensive at weddings, but it doesn’t have to be super fancy for guests to enjoy it. Go for crowd favorites like pasta, salad or even barbecue!

Music

Alcohol + good music= dancing. Guests on the dance floor makes for a fun wedding. I highly recommend getting a great DJ with up-to-date music. Don’t forget it is your job to give him a list of songs you want ahead of time so you don’t end up with the electric slide on repeat all night long.

Environment

Rain, sweltering heat and lack of air ventilation does not make your guests want to stick around for 4 hours. They’ve made an effort to be there, bought you an expensive gift and want to enjoy themselves. If your going to have a long ceremony, do it in the comfort of an air conditioned building where guests can relax. If the forecast says rain or snow, make sure you have a back up plan so no one is sopping wet in their formal attire. Having a wedding reception area that is foolproof will relieve so much stress the day of.

Sentiment

The most memorable parts of a wedding are the personalized touches you put into the littlest details. In my opinion, personalized vows, incorporating special family traditions, adding pictures of the couple and including handmade items make a wedding unique. Take the time to add your personality to the wedding and your guests will always remember it.

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