Skip to main content
Bianca
Master August 2019 Ontario

Ceremony and Reception Start Time

Bianca, on February 22, 2019 at 02:12 Posted in Plan a wedding 0 14
Saved
Reply

I have a dilemma! My ceremony start time is 4pm (I am keen to ensure this does not change), while my reception start time is 5pm on paper.

Here's what I'm unsure about. So, our ceremony is due to start is 4pm, I'm assuming it will go on for about 30 minutes, followed by chit-chat with some of our guests, then everyone will leave for the reception (approximately 20 minutes away). What time should I put on our details card regarding the reception start time? Should I put 5pm or 5:30pm?

Is it a big deal if the timing isn't 100% correct?

Our DJ isn't due to begin until 5:30pm, is it a big deal if there's no music for half an hour?

I have no idea what I should do, but I want (need) to order my invitations ASAP in order to take advantage of a great sale on Vistaprint and to have them go out in time!

Please help!

Retrieved from: https://www.easyweddings.com.au/articles/public-ceremony-locations-what-are-the-requirements/

82d79d5a-9fdf-412d-bd14-592d474bb0ce~rs_Retrieved from: https://www.theknot.com/content/wedding-reception-lighting-basics

14 Comments

Latest activity by Bianca, on February 25, 2019 at 17:08
  • Bianca
    Master August 2019 Ontario
    Bianca ·
    • Dispute
    View quoted message

    That is a good idea! I'll keep that in mind Smiley smile

    • Reply
  • Stephanie
    Master July 2018 Alberta
    Stephanie ·
    • Dispute
    My friend had put 6:00 for the start time and had the officiant announce that the doors opened at 5:30. I think it worked well because some people like to go straight to the reception venue and do all the guest book signing before anyone else arrives, and some people like to stay at the ceremony venue a little longer.
    • Reply
  • Bianca
    Master August 2019 Ontario
    Bianca ·
    • Dispute

    THANK YOU ALL FOR REPLYING!

    This is exactly what I was thinking (5:30pm start time), but I just needed to know that this was going to be the right thing to do. Now time to order my invitations!

    • Reply
  • Vinod
    Featured August 2017 Ontario
    Vinod ·
    • Dispute

    The time for 5:30pm is fine due to guests arriving and talking during the time of you arriving and making your entrance as planned.

    Cocktail hour in order should be noted for 5pm so that it gives your guests a heads up. That way the doors will open for them to seat in 15 minutes before you two entering.

    • Reply
  • Alycia
    Expert March 2020 Ontario
    Alycia ·
    • Dispute

    I would go for 5:30, simply because the music will start then, you’ll most likely having people come in early anyways, but they wont come in expecting the party to be starting just yet, when people come in at 5 expecting the party starting they might wonder when the DJ starts. It’ll just save you questions.

    • Reply
  • Michelle
    Expert April 2019 Alberta
    Michelle ·
    • Dispute

    I would say reception at 5:30pm. Many guests will get there early and that is okay, and they will not expect music yet necessarily, but then they aren't rushing to get there for 5!

    • Reply
  • Robyn
    Super June 2019 Ontario
    Robyn ·
    • Dispute

    I'd go for 5:30 as well, but I also think that the timelines for a reception start don't need to be super rigid. I'm being very forgiving with myself as I plan the day out. I'm anticipating a lot of last-minute changes.

    • Reply
  • Allison
    Master October 2019 Ontario
    Allison ·
    • Dispute
    View quoted message

    I agree with this! Our ceremony is at 3pm, half an hour roughly, and our official cocktail hour is at 5:30 (We might be starting it earlier but that's TBD. Our dinner will start at 6:30 so we're going to put both times down.

    We're hoping to finish up with photography at 5:30, we're staying on site so no need to allow for travel time, so we have an hour to mingle with guests at cocktail hour before being seated for dinner.

    • Reply
  • Amanda
    Super June 2019 Ontario
    Amanda ·
    • Dispute

    I agree with everyone else about saying 5:30pm.. also if you are worried about people rushing or being late you can also add what time dinner is served.. People expect to mingle, say hi to the couple, get a drink and chat before dinner so as long as there is still that break you should be fine.

    Not sure when your dinner is but for argument sake let's say 6:30pm - you can put on the invitation: reception begins at 5:30pm and dinner to be served at 6:30pm.. then people know they don't need to fly there necessarily and they won't be late if they aren't there right when the reception starts but it also doesn't leave it open so that you DO end up with guests being late for dinner. An hour to an hour and a half is more than enough time but once you're moving locations people can get distracted; go home let the dogs out, change their outfits, go get gas, cigarettes, snacks etc... ya never know. At least that way you're telling them when to be there but also telling them when they absolutely have to be there.

    • Reply
  • K
    Expert September 2018 British Columbia
    Kim ·
    • Dispute

    I agree with the others - ten minutes is pretty rushed to end the ceremony and run to the other venue. People will want to mingle and congratulate then leisurely find their way over and park and stuff. And it would be nice to have the music ready to go when the guests arrived.

    • Reply
  • Peggy
    Super May 2019 Alberta
    Peggy ·
    • Dispute

    I agree, I would change the start time to 5:30. Many people are going to want to hug you/chat with you after the ceremony, and depending on how many guests you have, that may take 30-60 minutes!

    • Reply
  • Casey
    Master October 2019 Ontario
    Casey ·
    • Dispute

    I honestly do not think most people will notice if everything doesn't start right on time. I personally put ours earlier, because there are some family members that are not exactly punctual people.

    Our ceremony and reception is at the same location, I have 5pm ceremony start time (30 min ceremony) and then reception starting at 6 on our invites.


    • Reply
  • Tori
    Top October 2019 Manitoba
    Tori ·
    • Dispute

    I say to go with the reception start time saying 5:30 just in case people do try and rush for 5 you wouldn't want them to get there and there be no music. Besides, as a guest you wouldn't want to think you have to rush to the reception right away any way.

    • Reply
  • Leah
    VIP April 2019 British Columbia
    Leah ·
    • Dispute

    I think people expect weddings times to vary, but I would change your reception start time to 5:30 to allow for buffer time.

    I'm all for punctuality but I would think that in the joyous commotion after the ceremony you may want to have more time to get into the next phase of the celebration.

    Where music is concerned - consider creating a quick Spotify playlist to have music playing until the dj gets set up and starts. For me it would be important to have music playing as much as possible, even if it's just jazz, or some other instrumental.

    • Reply

You voted for . Add a comment 👇

×
ReCaptcha Verification failed. Please try again.

Related articles

Groups

WeddingWire Article Topics