Every guest, whether they came from near or far to share in your day, adds a precious layer to your love story. Show how much you value their presence by giving them happy memories they’ll treasure forever. For 40 more ways to make your guests, family and groom feel valued on your big day, see the Winter 2013 issue of New Zealand Weddings, on sale now!
1. Introduce guests to each other by creating a wedding website with ‘guest of the week’ features, along with venue details, accommodation options, activities for out-of-towners and wedding updates.
2. Ask guests to write the name of their favourite song or artist on their RSVP, then add them to the playlist so everyone has at least one ‘Love this song!’ moment.
3. If your venue is difficult to find, access or has limited parking, hire double-decker buses, water taxis or shuttles so no one has to worry about transport.
4. If you expect your reception to last into the early hours, provide easy-to-eat midnight snacks such as slider burgers, hot wedges or s’mores cooked over a bonfire.
5. Bathroom baskets full of essentials such as mouthwash, facial wipes and Band-Aids might be just what your guests need to stay refreshed.
6. Set up icebreakers such as dance lessons, or try naming your guests’ tables after something they all have in common – a move that shows you put thought into who they’re seated with.
7. Keeping littlies entertained can make the day more fun for kids, parents and other guests. Give each child a goodie bag filled with crayons and colouring books, hire a magician, or set up a mini cinema to show popular kids’ flicks.
8. Try not to leave your guests hanging. Aim to keep your pre-reception photo shoot to no more than 90 minutes long, and provide drinks, nibbles and entertainment (such as a band, ice breakers or a photobooth) to keep them occupied while you’re away.
9. A short, personalised note can be written well in advance and put in an envelope at each place setting. This is a simple way to ensure you meaningfully communicate with each person on the day, expressing your full appreciation for their friendship and attendance.
10. Finish the night with a fireworks display, and give each guest a sparkler or lantern to farewell you with – an entertaining finale that also makes for captivating photos.