After providing entertainment for over 5,000 weddings, Silver Service Singers have some top tips for organising your wedding day timeline. We’ll share how long the average wedding day is, why it’s important to plan your wedding day and show you a typical wedding day timeline. Get stuck in and learn the best order of the day for your wedding!
How Long is the Average Wedding Day?
Whilst the overall day will feel a lot longer for those tying the knot, some guests may need to know how long the wedding day will be. Some are invited to the ceremony and reception, whereas others may only make it to the reception. Regardless, the average wedding day timeline lasts around 7 to 10 hours. That’s from the ceremony to any late-night activities. Whilst some guests might opt to dip out early, and others may enjoy dancing into the night, the bulk of your day spent with guests is around 7 hours on average.
Why is it Important to Plan Your Wedding Day?
So you’ve spent on average 12-18 months planning a wedding, but have you truly planned out the day itself? The photographers arrived, hair and makeup is being applied and guests are on their way, but do they know where to go?
One of the easiest ways to have your wedding day run smoothly is to have a day-of organiser. Someone who can greet guests at entrances, hand out confetti, and assist in finding their seats. Taking all the weight off any bridesmaids or father-of-the-brides to get on enjoying the day themselves.
Regardless, you’ll want to plan the order of your wedding day timeline so your guests know where to go, at the right time! Personalised signage can also help in this instance, but knowing the order of the day will give each guest peace of mind.
Typical Wedding Day Timeline
10am – Start getting ready
Let’s set the scene… The bridal party is getting ready, with hair and makeup adding the finishing touches. Corsages are on, buttonholes are in, and cufflinks are linked. Nerves begin and there’s excitement in the air. For most groomsmen, you’ll be running over vows and double, triple, and quadruple checking that your best man still has the ring! For the bridal party, the maid of honour will be zipping up dresses and brides adorning something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue.
1pm – Start of the Ceremony venue
Over at the venue, your guests arrive in drips and will likely have entrance photos with their plus ones. It’s often expected that nibbles such as canapes are served at this time until the whole crowd has arrived and ushered into the ceremony venue. Having watched hundreds of nervous grooms fidgeting, we’ve noticed that guests are happy to wait 30 minutes tops for a late, nervous bride and typically expect the ceremony to last less than an hour.
Shortly after the ceremony, confetti is typically thrown, with cheers to the happy couple and family photos begin.
2pm – Guests collect at the Reception venue
Depending on the distance between the wedding ceremony and reception, or if they’re held in the same venue. The guests will begin to make their way over to the reception space and typically enjoy a cocktail hour, celebrating the union and chatting with the now-joined family. On average, there is usually no more than an hour between the ceremony and the meal so it’ll be time to find your seat and get to know your table guests. This is the part we love the most as we love to find the biggest personalities in the room before we make our surprise performance.
3pm – Dinner is served
Next up on your wedding day timeline is food! The average time for the wedding breakfast is usually around 3 pm. As the wine is flowing, and scrumptious menus are consumed, your guests will get to know each other more, before enjoying the speeches. Now here’s the main contention in any wedding timeline!
We’ve seen lots of speeches in our times serving as secret singing waiters, some funny, some long, and definitely some surprises. But the speeches should typically take around 20 minutes max so that your guests can enjoy the cutting of the cake and feel a little loser, ready for entertainment!
4pm – Entertainment for your guests
Now here is where we typically step in, making a surprise performance and getting the whole wedding party swaying, napkins and all! Hiring secret singing waiters is a great way to let your guests’ hair down and warm them up for a night of dancing and celebrating your union. Take a look at the atmosphere we created at Moxhull Hall!
No matter the entertainment, there’s something for everyone. From flame dancers at golden hour to carnival rides (yep, we’ve witnessed it!), to light-up dance floors. You can go wild, or stay atmospheric with your wedding day entertainment and we’ve got tons of ideas to keep your guests entertained all day long!
6pm – The dancing commences
But it’s not just the guests we want up dancing, around 6 pm we expect to watch the first dance of the happy couple before your guests join you on the dance floor.
8pm – Late-night activities
From there on out the night is your own! Offer your guests some delicious top-ups with buffest style food, or even more favoured, make-your-own food stalls such as tacos, personal pizzas or ‘pick and mix’ sweetie carts for all ages.
Make sure to offer out the cake and party favours as your guests begin to head home, and get some lasting photographs and messages in a guest book, and the night is yours! Get yourself back safe to your hotel room and rest easy before heading on to your honeymoon. You’ve earned it!
Order of the day, wedding planning done right!
If you’re not sure about the order of your wedding day timeline, why not ask your venue how they’ve handled them in the past? If you’re opting for a fairly religious ceremony, expect a little longer spent here and pick out some readings for your friends and family to share.
And don’t forget to have fun with it, there’s no point rushing around worrying about every detail, that’s what your wedding planner is for! It can be easy to get consumed by all the wedding planning you’ve got stuck into over the last year, so just relax! Take it easy, and enjoy your special day.
We’ll well-versed in the average wedding day timeline and if you follow our blog, you’ll know we offer tips to keep your wedding guests entertained, our top wedding dance songs and quirky ideas for a unique wedding tailored to your beautiful romance. To see more of our wedding day surprise performances head to our video gallery or view more on our Silver Service Singers Youtube.