You’ve made it through the ceremony and you’re on the way to your reception. Next up is the wedding speeches.

Who gives wedding speeches and in what order?

It’s traditional for speeches to be given at the wedding reception. The father of the bride should give his wedding speech first, followed by the groom’s speech, and finally the best man’s speech.

Father of the bride

Since he usually pays for the wedding the father of the bride usually speaks first. He welcomes his guests, says a few loving words about his daughter and makes appropriately positive comments about his new son-in-law.

The groom

Next, on behalf of the groom and his new wife, The groom will give his groom’s speech. His wedding speech should give thanks to the various people who have helped with the wedding, and should adds some personal and loving comments about his new wife.

Best man’s speech

Finally, the best man will give his wedding speech. The purpose of a best man’s speech is, strictly, to introduce the groom to the bride’s family and friends and to highlight his many excellent qualities. However, in modern times, guests will expect a bit of light-hearted ribbing as well.

Other wedding speeches?

Sometimes additional speeches will be given.  The three most common are:

  • chief bridesmaid
  • the bride herself
  • the father of the groom

A traditionalist would say that none of these other speeches are necessary. They would say it’s the job of the father of the bride to speak about the bride, not a bridesmaid; the groom’s speech is given on behalf of both the groom and his wife, so the bride need not speak as well; and the best man speaks about the groom, so there is no need for a speech from the father of the groom.

In reality, the situation is often more delicate. Perhaps the father of the groom has paid for the wedding, for example – so if necessary discuss it with your fiancee and use your judgement as to who should give wedding speeches.