6 Wedding Reception Styles: The Pros and Cons of Each Type

There are many ways to celebrate your special day. No matter your style or your budget, there is a perfect type of reception to reflect who you are as a couple. These are some ideas for different types of wedding receptions that you can have at various times during the day.


1. Brunch or Breakfast Reception

This is a great choice for your wedding reception if you love brunches. You can offer your guests a traditional brunch menu that includes items like eggs benedict and omelets, as well as drinks such Bloody Mary’s or Mimosas.

Brunch receptions are a great way for you to save money on your wedding reception and allow you to go on your honeymoon that same day.

You’ll have a morning reception which means you will also have an early ceremony and less time to get ready than if your wedding was later in the day.

2. Lunch Reception

You can also do a lighter dinner reception with a buffet or plated meal, similar to the brunch idea. You can still have a morning wedding, but you will need to take a bit longer to get ready.

You can choose to have lunch or brunch as an alternative to full-course dinner. It is also more affordable than a full meal.

Although you will save money, a lunchtime reception won’t be as fun as an evening event.

3. Afternoon Tea Reception

An afternoon tea featuring finger sandwiches and desserts is an elegant way to celebrate your union. Your guests can also be served champagne.

A afternoon tea is another option that’s budget-friendly. It would allow for an early afternoon ceremony and leave plenty of time for dancing or an après-party.

This option might be a favorite with your female guests, but it might not be for your male guests.

4. Champagne and cake reception

You can’t go wrong with a straight cut to the cake. This is the most affordable option, and guests will expect dessert instead of a meal. A variety of mini pastries can be offered in addition to the traditional wedding cake.

This is a great option for couples who want to share their celebrations with their friends and family but can’t afford a full wedding reception.

You’re offering only a dessert at your wedding reception, so it will be shorter and you have more time with your guests.

5. Cocktail Wedding Reception

Cocktails and hors-d’oeuvres can be a great way to celebrate your wedding in a relaxed environment. This allows guests to socialize without having to sit down.

This allows you to offer your guests food without having to pay for a reception. You’ll have more time to get to know your guests and enjoy a more casual atmosphere if that’s what it is.

Even though your guests may not be able to eat a full meal, they might end up drinking more than at the dinner reception. This will increase the cost. With everyone standing and mixing, it might be difficult to include some of the more traditional elements of a reception.

6. Dinner Wedding Reception

This is the most popular type. It offers a variety of options, including a buffet, a set-up of stations (such as a carving station or pasta bar), or a plated dinner. You can also have a traditional flow of events, with a cocktail hour followed by dinner and dancing.

You and your guests will be fed well, and you’ll have plenty of time to prepare for the wedding ceremony.

This type of reception is the most costly. You may need to reduce your guest list if you have a tight budget.

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