Event Etiquette - Six Ways to Be a Good Guest

The season for parties is currently at its peak. For the party guests, the occasion is an opportunity to kick back and enjoy themselves. However for the host, holding a special event can be a daunting endeavor. A host has to worry about the decor arrangements, the food, the entertainment, and even whether their guests are getting along, having a great time, and behaving themselves. Take just one worry off the host’s listing by being a fantastic and well-mannered guest. Good guests genuinely shine making them welcome additions to any get-together.


1.      Inform your host whether you are attending. And do this right away. If you ever delay your response, you might deter the host’s preparation or even make it seem like you are waiting for something better to happen. Even when no RSVP has been required, it is smart to thank your host for the invitation and make him know if you will be there or not.


2.      Always arrive on time. Punctuality often means different things to people in different regions. As a general rule, guests should show up at or shortly after (15 minutes or even less) the time indicated on the invitation. You should not arrive early, though. If you are going to be very late, contact your host with an ETA so that she won’t panic.


3.      Be a willing participant. The moment your host tells you it’s the meal time, head out straight to the table. If you’re asked to take part in a party game or look at Laura’s graduation shots, accept graciously and actively in spite of how you actually feel.


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4.      Offer to help when you can. If you are checking with the host in the kitchen while she makes the meals, be precise when you offer to help: “I’d be glad to fill the water glasses or prep the salad.” Even if your offer is declined, your gesture will surely be appreciated. As the party’s end draws near, you can also offer to assist with the clean-up.


5.      Eat and drink responsibly. Attacking finger foods like you've never eaten for a week will not just attract the wrong type of attention; it will likewise leave less food for other attendees. Same does apply to the red wine. Moderation is the rule of the game.


6.       Thank your host twice. Make sure to thank your hosts wholeheartedly when you say your goodbyes. Another thank you by phone the following day of the party can be a kind gesture. If the party was formal or held in your honor, written thanks are a perfect way to go. In point of fact, a penned note is always appreciated — even after social events.