When it comes to the holidays—or any time of the year, really—I love to host a good soiree. However, it’s always nice to be able to kick back once in a while and be the guest. Even when you’re visiting someone else’s house as a guest, you should still put in the effort to make the event fun for everyone involved. Here I’ve created a short and easy-to-follow guide on how to be a good party guest.
Planning a party takes a lot of time, and it isn’t free either. When I’m doing my own planning, I calculate how much food and drink I need based on the amount of people that have RSVP’d. If someone shows up last minute, I’m worrying that I’ll run short on supplies, which will cause me stress throughout the entire event. In addition, don’t RSVP and ultimately neglect to show up without first letting your host know in a timely manner.
2. Dress to Impress
I know how important it is to have that lazy Saturday where you lounge about in sweatpants and a t-shirt from that one farmer’s market. While this is essential at times, it would be insulting to show up to a party dressed as such. Be sure to ask your host the dress code before attending the party.
3. Bring a Gift
I’m of the opinion that it’s bad form to show up to a party empty-handed. Your host is providing something for you, and it’s only right that you return the favor. The best way to do this is to show up with a traditional gift that will serve to express your gratitude for the invitation.
4. Be on Time
Fashionably late is so last season. If you arrive at a party too late, you will inconvenience the host and other guests, causing them to have to hold off their itinerary until you arrive. The rule of thumb is to not show up any later than fifteen minutes after the party’s start time.
5. Put Away Your Phone
Listen, I know what it’s like to have a busy lifestyle. Be it kids, work, or your local fundraiser—there’s always something to think about! While this may be true, a party is the time for you to forget about all that for a while and unwind. Additionally, even if you have good intentions when on your phone, it may look rude to other people at the event. Put the electronics down and engage with the other guests at the party.
6. Offer Your Help
If you notice that your host has their hands full, interject and ask if there’s anything you can do to help. You can offer to do a simple task, such as setting out silverware or getting drinks. Helping out will also allow your hosts to take a moment to breathe and interact with their guests.
7. Thank Your Hosts
When I hold a party and my guests don’t thank me, I sometimes wonder what it was that I did wrong. Was the food bad? Did I pick the wrong music? You may not mean anything by it, but those two words mean a lot to hosts. Always genuinely thank your hosts on your way out the door.