Wedding Guest (Maltese Wedding)

Hand-delivered or found in your letterbox, your role as a wedding guest starts when you open the envelope and read the invitation.


Now what?

Have a read through this guide we’ve prepared for you to ensure you put your best foot forward:

  1. RSVP – Be respectful and advise whether you will be attending or not. Do not leave it to a few days before the wedding and never, ever ask to bring an uninvited guest.
  2. If you receive an invitation, then you owe the couple a gift irrespective of whether you are going or not. When you know there is a gift list, try to follow it. If you opt for a cash gift, hand it to the maid of honour or best man at the reception, who will hand it over to the couple.
  3. This is the day where the bride shines and stands out so avoid white and ivory coloured outfits. It is also wise to follow the correct dress code depending on the type of wedding. Going for a pair of stilettos at a beach wedding will restrict you to any part of solid ground throughout the reception.
  4. If you are attending the ceremony, you should arrive before the bride. If you are late, wait until she walks down the aisle and even then, take one of the pews towards the back.
  5. Time for celebration follows at the reception – but this is not a time to eat like never before. While the couple will be walking around greeting their guests, be prepared! Time yourself before taking that deviled egg to avoid suddenly realising you are on video greeting them with a stuffed mouth. Another tip is to keep your glass in your left hand so your right hand is free to shake hands.
  6. At Maltese weddings, it is common to have different themed tables – be it with Chinese food, cheese, pasta – whichever you decide to queue for, remember this is not a race. Allow enough distance from the person in front of you to avoid poking your plate in their back. Overfilling the plate is also not acceptable.
  7. Drink wisely. If you are driving, know your limits and avoid being rowdy and drawing too much attention to yourself.
  8. The first dance is shared by the bride and groom. If you feel the urge to show your dancing skills, we suggest you wait. It won’t be long until the guests take to the floor and dance away.
  9. With nearly everyone owning a smartphone, it is very tempting to take photos of the bride and groom. Do not trump the couple by posting photos before they do. This is not your party – they get to decide when their photos are shared. Be respectful and ask before sharing their photos.
  10. If you are tired and wish to leave, try to do so after the cake is cut and do not eat sweets displayed on the cake table before.
  11. Never take away food from the reception to enjoy it at home. There is no other way to say this other than it is considered to be truly poor form.
  12. Last but not least, it would be courteous to find a few minutes after the wedding to send a personalised thank you note to the couple.
Ramona Galea

Ramona is an International Etiquette Coach and an avid believer of the importance these soft skills have nowadays. This passion kicked off from a young age when she questioned why elbows couldn’t stay on the table and her inquisitiveness continued and she founded First Class Etiquette, to address the developing need for people’s understanding of the importance of international business and social etiquette. It really is not just about elbows but confidence, attitude, assertiveness and knowing the how, the when and the why we do things. Amongst her hectic schedule, her two biggest indulgences are travelling with her family and reading with an Aperol Spritz in quiet surroundings - just being away from it all to de-stress.

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