Is a rehearsal dinner really mandatory? Let’s discuss the answer to this question of whether you have to have a rehearsal dinner at all. Read on for more!
True or false: you can’t get married without a rehearsal dinner. False! But that was an easy one.
Is a rehearsal dinner mandatory?
A rehearsal dinner is not mandatory; it is nice to have, but you can still get married even if you skip it.
What’s the point of the rehearsal dinner?
A rehearsal is a time set aside to do a run-through of the ceremony. What’s the point of it? It’s essential in order to look for snags that may come up in the ceremony itself BEFORE the big day. It also serves as a place to answer any questions from your wedding party, your officiant, etc. It gives your readers a chance to practice, your musicians the opportunity to rehearse, and will give you the feeling of confidence that everything will go as planned (hopefully).
The wedding party attendants generally like the rehearsal, too, as it gives them an opportunity to see where to stand, how to line up, and what they need to do during the ceremony.
So, to recap: rehearsal? Mandatory.
Rehearsal dinner: optional.
Let’s discuss why a rehearsal dinner isn’t necessarily required.
Is it OK to not have a rehearsal dinner?
Yes, it’s OK to skip a rehearsal dinner.
If you’re planning to have a rehearsal but you don’t want to do dinner afterward, that’s totally up to you. Some couples don’t want to or can’t foot the bill, especially with a wedding just a day or two away, and that’s OK. Most of the time, a rehearsal occurs on a Thursday or Friday evening, so rehearsing and then having your guests head home isn’t unheard of.
What to Do Instead of a Rehearsal Dinner
Since your attendants and readers are offering their time to help you, though, it certainly is a nice idea to have a rehearsal dinner of some kind, if you are able. If you decide to, be sure to send invitations for the rehearsal dinner ahead of time. (Tip: Here’s who gets invited to the rehearsal dinner.)
You do not need to do a traditional wedding rehearsal dinner if that’s not your thing.
Here are some alternatives to a rehearsal dinner.
– Throw a backyard bash
– Have a pizza party at home
– Rent a small room at a favorite low-key restaurant
– Go bowling and order food there
Who pays for the rehearsal dinner
The rehearsal dinner is often hosted by the groom’s family, but traditions change and that’s not necessarily the case for everyone. Before you decide to nix the rehearsal dinner completely, make sure you speak with both sides of your family, just in case.
And don’t put so much pressure on yourself to throw an elaborate rehearsal dinner. A rehearsal dinner ought to be simple: nice, with good food, of course — but simple.
It doesn’t have to be fancy. You can host a rehearsal dinner at your home with pizzas and salad. You can go out to eat at a restaurant and reserve a few tables ahead of time.
Or, you can go wild and formal with an event space reserved for the occasion.
The bottom line is you should always do what YOU want to do, and ask your soon-to-be spouse what he or she thinks. It is one of those decisions you should definitely make together.
Hope it helps!