1. Style
Send to a Friend via Email
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Discuss in my forum

What Should I Do If I Receive A Formal Dinner Invitation?

By

The Formal Dinner
TongRo Images/TongRo Images/Getty Images
Question: What Should I Do If I Receive A Formal Dinner Invitation?

I just received an invitation to a dinner party and I don't know the hostess very well. Please list some helpful tips on what to do next.

Answer:

Dinner parties are great fun. They offer a chance to get out and interact with your friends and loved ones, meet new people and of course try delicious new food. When you are invited remember that there are some specific guest 'no-no's' to keep in mind.

Once you have received an invitation to dinner and you have checked your calendar to make sure you are available you should respond to the host. This may be done either by mail, telephone or email if you like. During your conversation remember that this is not your dinner party and you should not specify any food likes, preferences or dislikes. Ask if there is any way you might be helpful and if you are uncertain of the attire for the evening, ask. A dinner party is a great time to wear some of your more dressy outfits. Once you know the type of dinner, you may have a better idea of what to wear. Once you have decided, pull out all the stops and do your best to look good. Be stylish and elegant but, remember to consider your comfort. There seems to be a direct correlation between hurting feet and a bad attitude. Remember, you want to be a great guest who is pleasant to be around.

Arrive to the dinner on time. Once you are there prepare to abide by the host's agenda. Sit according to the place card directions and don't be fussy about the arrangements. If you happen to be served something that you either cannot or do not eat, simply eat around it without comment.

Wait for the host or person of honor to begin eating before you do. If someone asks you to pass a particular dish, set it beside the next person's plate asking them to pass it to the person. This continues person to person until it arrives at the original requester.

When all is said and done, don't forget to have a great time. After the party a nice thank you note is appropriate thus letting the host know just how much you enjoyed the evening.

  1. About.com
  2. Style
  3. Etiquette
  4. Entertainment
  5. What Should I Do When I Receive A Formal Dinner Invitation

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.