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Why You Should Have an Engagement Party

5 Reasons to Have an Engagement Party (and 1 Reason Not To)

One minute you're basking in the excitement of your recent engagement, and the next thing you know, you and your betrothed are being feted at an engagement party, with your likenesses rendered in marzipan atop a cake.

OK, so maybe that last part isn't true for everyone, but you may be surprised to find that when you get engaged, people want to throw you parties. Often, it's friends of your parents, who want to return some long-lost favor, or friends who love any excuse to celebrate. For five reasons why this tradition makes sense (and one reason it doesn't),


  1. Someone offers to throw you one. Perhaps your aunt has five daughters, and you've attended every single one of their weddings. Or maybe your mom gave her best friend's daughter a fabulous wedding shower. These are the people who might want to host a party, so why not let them?
  2. It's an excuse to eat and drink. I, for one, love any excuse to eat party food and drink free booze. Better yet, the timing should work out so that the event is before you and your groom start caring about getting in shape.
  3. It keeps the guest list down. Chances are, you and your parents disagree about how many of their friends to invite to your wedding. So make a deal wherein you invite their top-tier friends to the big event and everyone else to the engagement party. Note: this works especially well if the engagement party is held in your hometown or wherever your parents live.
  4. It's good practice for the wedding. Even if you engineer your wedding to be as much fun as possible, you and your mate will still spend a considerable amount of time on the big day greeting people you haven't seen in years while trying to make your way to the food table. So consider this training.
  5. It's a chance to pause and reflect. After the initial bliss of getting engaged, you and your fiancé may find your conversations too consumed with wedding talk. Even if you try to be low-key about planning, you're bound to have some wedding-related stress. So remember: this is a happy time, an exciting milestone. An engagement party is a nice way to remind yourselves of that while spending time with people who are genuinely happy for you.

And one reason not to: it's expensive. If no one has offered to throw you an engagement party, don't feel obligated to host one, especially if you or your parents are footing a big wedding bill. Of course, that doesn't mean you can't still celebrate by inviting a bunch of friends to toast with you at a local bar.

If you are planning a wedding, happily wed, or looking for Mr. Right, start sharing your big day with our community. Just check the wedding content box on any community post.

Source: Cake Girl by Hyeyoung Kim

Join The Conversation
danakscully64 danakscully64 7 years
Wow, that's beyond tacky.
medicgirl medicgirl 7 years
I had a 'friend' who made sure to invite me to ALL the pre wedding parties and stagette...but nope wasn't good enough to be invited to the wedding! So I didn't attend anything, tacky beyond anything I've ever seen!
danakscully64 danakscully64 7 years
:) I wonder if they're more common in other parts of the country. I'm from California. I'm also not a huge party person (family-style or club-type), so I wouldn't be hurt if no one wanted to throw me one. It's okay though because I'm living out of state right now. I like the idea of an engagement brunch though :)
bisou002 bisou002 7 years
Danakscully - I tend to agree, not too many people are throwing engagement parties these days (I've only been to one, myself). My parents are throwing one in June for my fiance and I, but I was very torn at first about whether to do it or not. I think it will be really fun - and I am DEFINITELY not inviting people who I don't intend to invite to the wedding. Incredibly rude!!
danakscully64 danakscully64 7 years
I'm with Chloe and the others, everyone invited to the engagement party should be invited to the wedding unless it's a destination wedding. I've never attended an engagement party, I didn't know they were really practiced today. I don't see anyone in my family throwing me one either.
nancita nancita 7 years
I think if you are having the engagement party in a different location from the wedding, and the wedding is far away, it totally makes sense not to invite people to both. Just say "no gifts" on the invite.
kurniakasih kurniakasih 7 years
Engagement party is common (and a culture) where I come from, and we usually invite people who are invited to the wedding too LOL. That'll be too weird if not.
AlexisSF AlexisSF 7 years
i can not disagree more with inviting people to the engagement party (or any other pre-wedding event for that matter) and not inviting them to the wedding — SO TACKY!
snarkypants snarkypants 7 years
#3 is BS. who the heck would invite somebody to an engagement party and not invite them to the wedding?!?!??
karjofas86 karjofas86 7 years
i am with chloe bella! but other than that! its a happy time, why not celebrate!!
chloe-bella chloe-bella 7 years
I like engagement parties for that reason too, runningesq.
chloe-bella chloe-bella 7 years
Sorry, but I don't agree with No. 3. If someone invited me to their engagement party (or bridal shower, couples' shower, or bachelorette party), I would assume that I was also invited to the wedding. Unless someone's having a destination wedding where it's clear from the beginning that not many people will be invited, I think it's incredibly tacky to expect people to attend your pre-wedding events and then to not invite them to the actual wedding reception.
runningesq runningesq 7 years
I know some people think there are too many pre wedding parties, but I love engagement parties. They are usually low key (I just went to one that was a lovely brunch). I know people feel pressured to bring a gift, but a $10 bottle of wine is a fine engagement gift.
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