The Complete Wedding Day Timeline

After several months of planning, it is now time to take a look at your wedding day. We bet you tried to conjure several ideas for your wedding timeline but perhaps, the reason you are here with us is that you got nothing. With so much that has been going on, you experienced a sort of writer’s block. Only this isn’t about writing but rather your wedding day timeline.

It can be overwhelming but we got you! Vintage Bash prepared an overview of a typical wedding day timeline that you can use for your perusal. You can take it as it is but we encourage you to add a personal twist from your end. There are no strict rules in how a wedding day should be so feel free to play around and enjoy the best day of your life (so far!)

7 The Complete Wedding Day Timeline

The Complete Wedding Day Timeline

2:00 pm – pre-wedding preparations and getting dressed

Starting with the pre-wedding preparations, hair and makeup of the bride and bridal party consumes a lot of time. It is best to start early and get things done flawlessly. Besides actual hair and make-up, this will also include shots of your wedding’s behind the scenes so it is best to allow time for that in here too. The wedding photographer should be in the location at least 30 minutes before the bride gets ready.

pre-wedding day timeline preparation

Since this involves utmost attention and artistry, you should give it more time so there is a lot of room for adjustment. Also, this is to ensure punctuality for the ceremony since that has a fixed schedule.

3:30 pm – Bridal and Wedding Party Portraits

Now that the bride is ready along with everyone, it is time for the portraits. Get ready to take your best shots and go through the wedding photography checklist we have here so you don’t miss out on any. If you want to have a few creative shots, ensure that you are ready with props and that you already discussed this with the photographer.

If you are opting to have a “first look” with your partner, you can also include it here. The first look is where the bride and groom meet before the wedding. They can take shots together here from pre-scouted areas in the venue. However, please note that is optional.

5:00 PM – Wedding Ceremony

This is the start time indicated on the invitation. Guests should have already arrived at the venue and are already settled down. As the highlight of the day, this is where you two will exchange vows and seal the marriage for a lifetime. Start playing music at the time to set the atmosphere and increase anticipation but always start at least 15 minutes later so you can ensure that everything’s settled down before the actual ceremony.

Bellamy Loft ceremony wedding day timeline

The actual length of a ceremony may vary depending on the type of wedding a couple is having. If it is a non-religious ceremony, it can be done in 30 minutes tops but for a religious one, it may take up to a full hour.

6:00 PM – Cocktail Hour

The cocktail hour is the window between the ceremony and the reception. This is where short entertainment and food are offered to keep the guests occupied while you’re taking post-ceremony portraits. If you didn’t opt-in for the “first look,” this is when you will get to take portraits with your partner and wedding party.

This is also the time where you can both take a breather and get ready for the reception. If you’re feeling a bit too giddy, you can also join in the cocktail hour midway with your groom but not required.

7:00 PM – Grand Entrance and First Dance

wedding day timeline grand entrance

Once the venue is ready, the guests can now settle in. Once done, the program will start, and you and your partner will be invited in for the grand entrance. It is best if you time the grand entrance straight to your first dance. You can easily do so by playing music then proceeding to the dance right when you reach the area.

7:30 PM – Welcome Toasts and Dinner

After the first dance, you can now settle down while the masters of the ceremony jumpstart the program. Following this, a welcome toast will be shared for the two of you. The welcome toasts are often done by the parents or a family member of the newlyweds.

Next from the toasts, dinner will be served for your guests. It can be dependent on how you intend to run the catering but you can either have servers.

8:30 PM –  Bridal Party Toasts and Parent Dances

EmblazePhotography 77 1 scaled The Complete Wedding Day Timeline

Now that everyone ate and enjoyed their dinner, the bridal party toasts can now be done. Start with the maid of honour and the best man then set a time limit for each speech. Further, you can also have a few dance sets with your families.

9:30 PM – Cake Cutting, Bouquet Toss and Garter Toss

Before the night ends, you can now proceed with cake cutting, bouquet and garter toss. After doing so, you can also take the time to say a few words to everyone who attended or even to your groom too.

10:30 PM – Open Party

Last but not the least, it is now time to party! Encourage everyone to enjoy the food and drinks. Good music can also be played altogether so people can dance too. You can also give your regards to each of the tables.

11:30 PM – End of Party

All great things come to an end. Though this party is ending but remember to look forward to a lifetime together with your partner. It’ll be cute to also have a grand exit – play your wedding song and make a remarkable exit to a happily ever after.


Wrapping this up, this wedding day timeline is a great help in scheduling your big day. You can easily adjust time according to your preferred schedule. Get that wedding day planned out and happily grace the day with no worries from your end.



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