Wishing all of you lovely people a very merry Christmas & happy New Year! It’s been a truly fantastic year. We look forward to a few days off celebrating with those we love!
Do I need assigned seating?
Guests prefer assigned seating, particularly older guests. Unassigned seating sounds great in theory and is one less thing to do for the event’s organizer, but unfortunately, rarely works out so well for several reasons:
- There may be a rush for the good seats
- It will take a lot longer for your guests to be seated as they may still be milling around while the food is being served
- The last few guests end up walking around looking for seats
- Couples can be split up
- Older guests may end up seated where they can’t see or hear anything
It can be a pretty miserable experience for guests. The larger the event, the bigger the risk you are taking with unassigned seating.
Assigning Seats or Tables?
Guests can be assigned to a table (where they can choose any seat) or assigned to a specific seat. If they are assigned a specific seat a place card is placed at the table.
You might want to put people next to people they know, or you might want to split them up a bit so they meet new people. Try to put each person next to at least one person they already know. People are more likely to get on well if they are similar ages or have similar interests.
Generally, you should try to put families together and work colleagues together. But if you know people don’t get along, try seating them separately. It is worth breaking with tradition to have a stress free event.
Try to create balanced tables, with even numbers of males and females. It is traditional to alternate male-female-male-female guests in some cultures.
Escort Cards & Seating Charts
Guests will need to know which table they are seated at so they do not have to walk around to find their place. This is done by displaying a seating chart or escort cards prominently at the entrance to the venue. Whether you prefer a seating chart or escort cards is personal preference.
Escort cards show the name and number of the table a guest is seated at. They are normally placed on a table, in alphabetical order, at the entrance to the venue.
Table numbers are placed on tables to display the number or name of the table. They should be large enough to read without having to walk right up to the table. Table number cards are usually large tent fold cards, or flat cards in a holder.
If you are feeling creative you can give tables names instead of numbers. Named tables add a bit more atmosphere and a personal touch. Possible table naming themes include: flowers, gemstones, countries, colours, actors/films/TV programs, bands/songs, or cocktails.
Place cards are placed at each setting to ensure guests sit in the correct seats.
If you have assigned guests to seats you will need:
- seating chart, table numbers and place cards; or
- escort cards, table numbers and place cards
If you have assigned guests to tables you will need:
- seating chart and table numbers; or
- escort cards and table numbers
We can help you out with all of your reception stationery needs. Let us take care of the design of your table numbers, menus, place cards, seating cards and escort cards!