Wedding Toast Tips – Part I

Although no one knows for sure, toasts are believed to have originated from the habit of poisoning one’s enemy by slipping the poison into their glass of wine.

Much to the relief of guests everywhere, honorable hosts started pouring from a common pitcher and sipping the wine first – proving it was not poisoned – before offering a toast to the health and happiness of their guests.

Eventually this evolved into today’s wedding toasts that offer congratulations and best wishes to the Bride and Groom.

Yet even that simple toast of congratulations and best wishes has become more like a 2-5 minute speech, including other things such as stories from the Groom’s past and thanks to the wedding attendants, guests, and parents for helping to make the day a success.

Keep this quick guide handy, you’re going to want these tips close as you write and get ready to deliver your unforgettable Wedding Toast!

Order of Toasts

Traditionally, wedding toasts have been given in the following manner:

  • Best Man: Offers his congratulations, and then toasts to the health and happiness of the Bride and Groom, usually with a few moments of reminiscing
    on some funnier parts of the Groom’s past
  • Groom: Takes a moment to thank the Bride’s parents, Best Man and Bridesmaids, then offers a toast to his beautiful Bride
  • Bride: Expresses thanks to the Groom’s parents, then toasts her dashing Groom
  • Father of the Bride: Addresses the guests and thanks everyone for attending, then formally welcomes the Groom to the family, finishing with announcing the festivities may begin

But don’t feel obligated to follow the rules of tradition! The only one required to propose a Wedding Toast is the Best Man, but watch out for some competition…many weddings are now including a toast from the Maid of Honor as well.

And of course, any guest who feels moved to say a few words may also offer a toast to the Bride and Groom.

Best Man Toasts

For the Best Man, a wedding toast should ultimately be a toast to the Bride and Groom and their new life together.

But the audience is also looking to you to add a touching, and possibly humorous story about how the Bride and Groom met, or even an embarrassing story about your escapades with the Groom. But be sure to keep any stories PG!

Maid of Honor Toasts

It’s becoming a new trend to hear the Maid of Honor speak at the wedding as well. If you’re the Maid (or Matron) of Honor, you can certainly tell the story of how the Bride and Groom met.

But if you’re following the Best Man, chances are he’s covered this already. Your job is to offer words of inspiration and wisdom to the newlyweds, as well as your blessing.

Groom Toasts

While the Best Man may be the only person offering a toast, it is traditionally thought that the Groom should stand and at least thank the Best Man for his toast.

This is also appropriate timing for you, the Groom, to offer thanks to the Bride’s parents (especially if they paid for the event) and thank the wedding attendants and Bridesmaids for helping make the day special.

And don’t forget why you are here, to marry your beautiful Bride, so be sure to toast to her beauty and any other qualities you want to add.

Bride Toasts

Now it’s the Bride’s turn to speak. But if you’re the Bride, what could you possibly say that hasn’t been said already? If any of the above thank-you’s have been left out, add them now, as well as an additional thank you to the Groom’s parents for raising him to be the wonderful man he is today.

And surely you won’t forget to toast the love of her life, your new husband.

Father of the Bride Toasts

Last, but surely not least, is the Father of the Bride. For the Father of the Bride, your well wishes for your daughter’s happiness with her new husband should be followed by a formal welcome of the Groom into your family.

Additionally, now is a great time to thank the guests for attending and celebrating with the family, and announce that the festivities may now begin.

However, the Father of the Groom may wish to speak as well, in which case announcing the beginning of festivities will fall to him.

Continue reading: Wedding Toast Tips – Part II


Make sure to check out Wedding Toast Tips – Part II and Wedding Toast Tips – Part III pages as well as other related wedding speeches articles below.