There is little that excites me more than a wedding invitation dropping through the letterbox, beginning to picture what the big day may be like and what the happy couple are going to wear. As often is the case within my circle of friends, even just the mention of a wedding gets us all behaving like giggling school girls filled with excitement for the celebration and it isn’t long before one of us starts trying to predict what to expect – will it be a formal affair, perhaps a bohemian festival style celebration or should we start saving for a destination wedding? Of course we know we shouldn’t try and guess too much and instead wait for an update from the couple in question, but gosh it is fun trying to imagine what they may pick and see how different the end result turns out!
Every wedding should be about celebrating a couple’s love for one another, but as much as we may try to sugar coat it the fact of the matter is that sometimes there are elements that become a bit of a nuisance when you’re a wedding guest. We’ve all been there, no plus one at a wedding where you only know the bride, an expectation to jet halfway across the world to attend a wedding that means sacrificing your only holiday that year or even something as simple as not liking the food after a long, drawn out ceremony that you struggled to stay awake in.
You are certainly not the only one to have felt this way. So much so that high street jeweller Goldsmiths have conducted a survey to find out exactly what it is that makes us Brits tick as a wedding guest.
1. A Hen/Stag Do and a Wedding Abroad
Just one of these events being abroad can cost a small fortune, but two? We all want to be able to be there for our loved ones and celebrate their union but when it comes as such a financial burden a huge 39% of us hold this as our biggest bug bear. Speak to other invitees and see how they feel about both celebrations taking part overseas – you may find that it is too big an ask of a few of you in which case take the bride/groom aside and be honest. The last thing they’ll want is for you to feel uncomfortable or worse, embarrassed you can’t make both and suggest hosting an alternative celebration in the UK for those who can’t make the foreign pre-wedding party so you can still be part of the excitement.
2. Screaming Children
I must admit I was shocked to see that this annoyance took second place in Goldsmiths survey, with a staggering 36% of people claiming this as their biggest frustration at a wedding. I personally think having little ones at a wedding is a blessing as they always provide some form of unpredictable entertainment and are the first ones up on the dance floor. I, like many, have been to weddings where little ones grow tired, agitated and bored sitting through the ceremony and begin to play up. Thankfully at all of these the parents have taken them out the room to respect the bride and groom and five minutes playing outside is usually enough for them to burn a little energy and return to the ceremony calmer and more well behaved. If you’re concerned about inviting children to your big day why not provide entertainment to keep their little minds and hands busy? You can read more on ways to care for the mini VIPs here.
3. Drunken Relatives
Not far behind screaming children ranks drunken relatives scoring an impressive 34% in the survey. As with any big celebration there will always be some who take it too far, and although sometimes it can be humorous and a bit of fun when someone begins to push the boundaries of what is socially acceptable they can quickly turn into a nuisance. No one is responsible for these persons, but if you spot someone being bothered by one of these culprits why not step in and make an excuse to get the victim out of the tight spot they have found themselves in. Perhaps invite them for a drink, a breath of fresh air of even if they will accompany you to the toilets as you aren’t quite sure where they are – you don’t need to follow through with any of these things but they will be incredibly grateful and will return the favour if the tables are turned a little later on!
Remember, if you see anything untoward going on alcohol or a wedding is never an excuse. If safe try and intervene yourself but if not quickly find a few others who can help you put an end to it and rescue the individual being preyed upon.
4. An Inconvenient Location
Scooping fourth place in the survey is an inconvenient wedding location boasting a score of 29%. Some of the most beautiful wedding venues are off the beaten track a little, it is often what makes them so attractive, but that doesn’t always make the journey to them an easy one to undertake. With the rise in popularity of barn weddings and the constant popularity of traditional English country weddings, more and more guests are finding that just the journey to these venues can be a stressful task, even more so for those reliant on public transport. Their rural location can also mean minimal or complete lack of mobile signal making asking for guidance a non-starter too! Inconvenient locations don’t just exist out in the sticks… finding a spot in the middle of a city can just be as tricky with the hustle and bustle and crowds of people to contend with, finding that all important doorway can be like searching for a needle in a haystack. If possible go to the venue the day before to get an idea of just where you need to get to so on the big day you can rid yourself of any travelling stress knowing you’ll get there with ease.
The remaining annoyances identified in the list were long and cringeworthy speeches (29%), long waits for food (25%), not receiving a plus one (22%), being asked for a monetary wedding gift (17%) and when a wedding falls on a weekday (13%).
Are there any wedding bug bears you think are missing from the list? Let me know in the comments, I’d love to hear what winds you up as a wedding guest.