How to Give the Proper Wedding Toast

Learn 3 tips for giving a proper wedding toast and find out what not to do.

Richie Frieman
4-minute read
Episode #137

People can sense when you are not comfortable; and when you deliver an awkward joke that lands about as soft as a sumo wrestler on a trampoline, everyone will know it. If you feel better speaking eloquently about the happy couple, then go for it. If you need ideas, buy a poetry or quote book and use some lines that work for the couple and the occasion. Or choose a certain song lyric you feel really represents the couple. People will appreciate a thoughtful wedding toast just as much as one that makes people laugh. In the end, you’ll get a nice round of applause even if you didn’t get laughs. If you do want to tell jokes, have your friends help out. Or as I said in a previous article, “What Do After Sending An Embarrassing Text Or Email,” you can always ask me--I’m happy to help!

Proper Wedding Toast, Tip #3: Be Sober

The speeches for my brother-in-law’s wedding didn’t come until 12:30 AM. The cocktail hour started at 8, and the open bar reception at 9:30. Despite my avatar holding a martini glass, the Modern Manners Guy is a lightweight. That said, when presented with an open bar, I generally take advantage. But because I didn’t want to give my toast, uh, toasted, I paced myself.

Now, that can sometimes not be the case. At a friend’s wedding, his obnoxious older brother gave the worst best man speech I have ever heard. It was so rude, they deleted it from their video! His brother swore he was sober but when he grabbed that microphone he approached the situation as his long awaited chance to tell his parents--and the bride--how he really feels. In his ten-minute rant he did everything but spike the microphone on the ground and moon the entire party. I have a feeling his good friends Jack Daniels, Jose Cuervo, and even Capt. Morgan helped him write the speech.

In the end, when it comes time to give the proper wedding toast, you don’t want to take the focus away from the bride and groom. It’s not your time to shine and not your moment of glory. It’s theirs. There was a lot of planning, money and anticipation on the day so don’t ruin by telling everyone about how your friend’s booger collection in college. Leave that one for the after party.

Do you have a great story about a wedding toast you gave or one you heard? Post them on my Modern Manners Guy Facebook page so we can all laugh with you. As always, if you have another manners question, I’m look forward to hearing from you so drop me a line at manners@quickanddirtytips.com. As well, don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @ MannersQDT. And of course, check back next week for more Modern Manners Guy tips.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock