Holiday Dinner Etiquette Tips for Hosts & Guests



Who doesn't look forward to attending a great dinner? What else can top tasty food, mellow music, and great company? Even with all the excitement - especially around the holidays - there are simple etiquette responsibilities of hosts and guests than can really make the difference between an unforgettable party or a party everyone would rather forget. So let's check out these etiquette tips that will surely make you shine at your next party. Drum roll please:

Responsibilities of the Host

  • Look your best! Feel your best! If the event is being held at your home, throw on some shoes or pumps to complete your ensemble (at least until all guests have arrived). A stylish host always helps set the party tone! If there is a dress code preferred, be sure to include in your invites.
  • Always greet guests at the door or as soon as you see them.  If you have a greeter, make sure to keep on eye on the door for any new guests so you'll know as soon as they arrive. Greet them accordingly
  • Immediately take jackets/coats. You can hand them to another to hang up or put them in a room set aside for coats.
  • Take any gifts and follow same procedure as coats. Before the party begins, make sure you've designated an area for keeping gifts. If the gift is, for instance, wine, do not feel obligated to open and serve to guests. If the gift is a dessert, feel free to serve and make available to guests, but ask the guest first for permission first.
  • Introduce arriving guests to friends standing in the area. Identify friends by name.
  • Give directions to food and drinks to your arriving guests.
  • After all guests arrive,  the host circulates to make sure everyone has someone with whom to talk.
  • Assign someone to make sure there is enough food and drinks for everyone throughout the party. This can be handled by your event coordinator and/or caterer.         

   Responsibilities of Guests

  • Always take a hostess gift if you are going to someone’s home. If not at a home, it's always still a great idea to bring a token of appreciation.
  •  If it is a large party and your host is not at the door, work your way through the crowd and say hello to your host. Before you head to the bar or buffet or begin speaking with other guests, make sure to greet the host first.
  •  Don’t hesitate to introduce yourself to others, and shake hands when you meet them.
  •  If you are talking to someone and a stranger walks up, introduce yourself, then the person with whom you are talking.
  • If there is an event coordinator, treat he/she as you would the host, as this person is a representative of the host.
  •  If you spill something, let the host know immediately, and offer to help clean it up.
  •  If you break something, let the host know. It is your responsibility to pay for the damage.
  •  Don’t bring a friend to the party unless you have checked with the host first.
  • Always thank the host before you leave. Don’t just walk out.                           -adopted from

What is your experience with these tips? Tell us your perspective. And remember: Joy Designs Homes