Q: I’m trying to put together my wedding schedule and I was wondering about saying our thank yous. First, when does that happen? And second, who should I be thanking?
Wonderful question! It’s so great that you are thinking about your thank you speech because this can be an item couple’s forget. So, I’m so glad you’re thinking about it now.
To answer your first question, your thank you speech typically would go towards the end of the program. For most couples, it makes sense to have it at the end of dinner and before open dancing. You want to say them before the dancing and drinking really get underway and while everyone is still around. However, you can say them really at any portion in the wedding reception.
I’ve had some couples do their thank you speech early on before dinner as a welcome to the wedding. I’ve had other couples do it right before the open dancing starts. And others who will couple it with cake cutting somewhere in the middle. It doesn’t really matter when you do it, just that you do it.
Now to answer your second question, your thank you speech is really just about sharing your gratitude. It’s gratitude for all the people you love. It’s gratitude for everyone who came to the wedding. And it’s gratitude for all those who helped with the wedding. So, who you should thank is usually all your guests along with any particular standouts. These standouts are those who were super supportive during the planning either financially, emotionally or physically.
So, for example, it could be your parents for helping to pay for the wedding and supporting your decisions. Or it could be your wedding party for helping with small tasks and keeping you sane. It could be a friend who was your day of manager. Or a sister who helped with all of your DIY projects.
Your thank you speech is just about saying thank you and sharing that with your guests. It can be as short or as long as you want, but I’d keep it to no longer than a few minutes. And if publicly calling out people isn’t your style, write them a personal note instead or pull them off to the side and thank them that way.
(Photo credit: Allina Yang)
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