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Who Should Plan to Give a Wedding Toast?

Avoid an open-mic feel at your reception and determine ahead of time who gets to speak.

Contributing Writer
emily adhir wedding toast
Photography by: Brandon Kidd Photography

Toasts are a beloved wedding tradition that offer personal glimpses of the newlyweds by a few friends or family members who know them best. But sometimes random guests also want to make declarations (and share amusing anecdotes) with the crowd. Make sure your A-team gets the first opportunities to speak by designating a toasting order ahead of time; share it with the speakers and give a copy to the emcee who can call the speakers up to the mic when it's their turn. Follow the order below, then, if you want, the emcee (or best man or bandleader) can ask if anyone else wants to say a few words. (Take "a few words" literally—a toast should be brief, not rambling, or the audience will tune out.) Here are the primary speakers and the traditional order they go in.

 

The 4 Types of Toasts You'll Hear at Every Wedding

 

The Best Man

He's the only person who is traditionally expected to toast the bride and groom. He also acts as emcee during the toasts, introducing each of the next speakers.

 

The Maid of Honor

The bride's best girl often stands up and shares her own sincere, sentimental thoughts with the crowd.

 

The Bride and Groom

They can get up separately or together to thank everyone for being an unforgettable part of their special day. While looking at his radiant bride, the groom may say something along the lines of "I'm the luckiest guy in the world" as the room applauds.

 

The Bride's Parents

If they're the hosts, one or both may want to thank their guests and recount warm memories of their daughter and son-in-law.

 

The Groom's Parents

They too can get up and get sentimental about their son and his new spouse too.

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About the Author

Nancy Mattia

Though Nancy has been writing about weddings for years, she admits that watching a bride walk down the aisle—even on TV—still makes her tear up. The New York-area writer's other favorite wedding moments are when the groom sees the bride for the first time, hearing the toasts, and when she sees a waiter with a tray full of hors d'oeuvres walking towards her. 

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