Invitations and Ceremony Start Times

The topic of invitation and actual time to have listed comes up pretty often. Brides are often concerned about guests arriving late and possibly missing the start – or even all – of the ceremony. The perfect solution seems to tell a little white lie on your wedding invitation, showing an earlier ceremony start time than actually planned.

While this may seem like a brilliant plan to get notoriously late guests to be in their seats on time, it’s actually certain to cause more harm than good.

There’s no arguing that some people are just always late to everything (ever heard of that saying, “They’ll be late to their own funeral”?), but they probably make up only about 5% of your guest list. A majority of your guests will plan to arrive 15-30 minutes before the ceremony is set to start.

In other words, if the processional (walking down the aisle) is scheduled to begin at 3pm, the time on your invitation should be 3pm. If the clock is ticking towards 3:00 and guests are still making their way into the venue, it is completely acceptable to delay your entrance ten minutes – just be sure to build this extra time into your wedding day timeline.

Champagne and pink wedding invitation and tie the knot save the date | K. Moss Photography

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