Will a Receiving Line Cut Into Our Wedding Reception Time?

Ceremony & Vows, Etiquette
ruffled liancarlo wedding dress

Photo: Corbin Gurkin

Wedding ceremony traditions are tricky to navigate. In our daily etiquette post, our experts help brides-to-be answer the toughest questions.

We're worried a receiving line will eat into our reception time. What should we do?

For starters, you can keep the receiving line short and sweet—just you and your hubby. By excusing all other family and wedding-party members, you allow guests to work the line more quickly. If you're still concerned that a traditional receiving line will be too time-consuming, here are some other options: You and your husband could re-enter the ceremony site immediately after exchanging vows and personally release each pew or row of guests. This provides a great opportunity to quickly greet everyone before the reception starts. You might also join arms with your spouse at the reception and pop by each table for a quick hello. For an extra-personal touch, hand-deliver your wedding favors as you make your rounds—it's a perfect way to catch everyone. Just make sure to keep moving and don't get held up at one table for too long. Otherwise, your reception will turn into one long receiving line, the exact thing you were trying to avoid.

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