Plan Your Reception

How to Plan Your Reception

October 31, 2018

As you’re counting down the days until your wedding, it’s quite possible that your wedding day timeline took the back burner to your other –  shall I say “funner” – details. With an average of 7 vendors present on your wedding day, it could be a daunting task to juggle the flow while RSVPs and final vendor payments are coming due. When having a wedding planner isn’t in your budget, here are 5 tips on how to plan your reception and stay sane, thanks to

How to Plan Your Reception and Stay Sane


#1: Be Realistic
#2: Get Organized
#3: Learn to Delegate
#4: Trust Your Vendors
#5: Relax

Plan Your Reception
Photographer: Love Pic Love

Timeline Tips From a Pro


As a wedding planner, I’d also like to add a few timeline tips of my own. If you hired a DJ, most often than not, they can provide a reception timeline for you. In case the task of building a timeline is in your hands, here’s an example of how a reception can traditionally flow…

Traditional Reception Timeline

5:30 Cocktails
6:30 Grand Entrance + First Dance
6:40 Welcome + Blessing
6:45 Dinner
7:45 Cake + Speeches
8:00 Parent Dances
8:10 Open Dancing
9:30 Bouquet + Garter Toss
10:00 Last Dance + Grand Exit

For couples who prefer to not be in the spotlight too long, the first dance can be moved to after dinner, and halfway through the song, parents can join in for a simultaneous Father/Daughter and Mother/Son dance. This modified reception schedule can flow more like this…

Modified Reception Timeline

5:30 Cocktails
6:30 Grand Entrance
6:35 Welcome + Blessing
6:40 Dinner
7:40 Cake + Speeches
7:50 First Dance + Parent Dances
8:00 Open Dancing
9:30 Bouquet + Garter Toss
10:00 Last Dance + Grand Exit

It’s often said that wedding days fly by so fast, and having a schedule laid out beforehand gives you the freedom to enjoy each and every moment that happens without stressing about what’s supposed to happen next. If planning your reception is still on your to-do list, these tips should help you breeze through it and still leave you some mental space to update your guest list!