A wedding usher can be a great addition to your wedding party. Read on to learn more about what wedding ushers do on the big day.
If you’re looking to involve more family or friends on your big day, wedding ushers would be a great addition to your wedding party. But if you've never been to a large wedding, you might not even know what a wedding usher is, what they do, or whether you need (or want!) ushers at your wedding.
In this complete guide, we'll walk you through everything you need to know about wedding ushers so you have the information you need to decide whether wedding ushers are the right fit for your bridal party—and, if so, exactly what your ushers need to do on your big day:
First things first. Before we answer the question "what do ushers do at weddings?", let's cover the more basic question—"what is an usher in a wedding?"
The dictionary defines usher as "a person who shows people to their seats, especially in a theater or at a wedding." Essentially, an usher is part of the wedding party and acts as the first point of contact for your guests, welcoming them to the wedding and helping to seat guests prior to the ceremony.
Next question—do you need an usher? The answer depends on your wedding size and formality. If you’re planning to have a high guest count, having a wedding usher will help keep things moving fast as their primary task is to direct guests to their respective seats. Über formal weddings (for example, a black tie wedding) also require a wedding usher to ease the day’s stress by guaranteeing a smooth flow of the wedding. Whether you have open seating or respective sides for your guests, it’s a nice touch to have someone who can answer any last-minute wedding guest questions before the ceremony starts.
Because ushers are the first people many guests will encounter at your wedding, you want to choose your wedding ushers wisely. But what, exactly, should you be looking for? Or, in other words, what makes a good wedding usher?
Now that you know what a wedding usher is (and what makes a good one), let's jump into a rundown of duties that a wedding usher is responsible for—before, during, and after your wedding ceremony:
Unlike the bridesmaids or best man, at the reception, the wedding usher usually sits with their family or friends—and not at the head table, as they also won’t be doing any speeches or dances.
The general rule is to have one wedding usher for every 50 guests. But even if you're having a smaller wedding, you may still want to have at least two ushers; that way, they can keep each other company—and guests won't have to wait to sit down if they arrive at the same time as other guests.
Wedding ushers are often male, and because they have fewer tasks than the groomsmen, they are usually younger than the rest of the wedding party. Wedding ushers can be the couple’s younger siblings or close relatives. But, of course, this is entirely up to the wedding couple—you can choose both male and female ushers, and if you would rather leave these duties to someone older, than that works, too. Your wedding, your rules!
Wedding ushers are a part of the wedding party—and, as such, should be dressed accordingly. You can either dress the wedding ushers in the same attire as the bridesmaids and/or groomsmen—or, if that feels too formal, dress them in a more casual manner that still clearly indicates they're part of the wedding party (for example, if your groomsmen are wearing tuxes, you may have your ushers wear a suit—but have them wear the same tie and pocket square as the groomsmen).
Similar to a flower girl or ring bearer, the wedding usher is one of the very important (yet sometimes overlooked) wedding roles. Wedding usher duties primarily consist of managing seating and ceremony logistics. Not only is including a wedding usher a great way to honor a close friend or family member on your special day, but having an usher is very beneficial for the flow of your wedding.
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