With all the tips out there on how to throw parties and be a good hostess, it’s also important for guests to learn (or at least be reminded of) how to be good guests! Shindigz, where the world comes to party, has come up with a list of ten things your party hostess should not have to say out loud.
And here’s a free tip: If your party host says any of the following things to you, you’re not being a good guest!
1. “Please RSVP on time or I’ll kill you.”
Planning a party can be stressful. Having an accurate head count several days before the party (or several weeks in the case of a wedding) is more helpful than most guests realize. If the host was kind enough to invite you to the party, you should show the courtesy of a timely response to the RSVP request.
2. “If you’re coming to the party, would you mind bringing something?”
We’re not talking about your vacation photos or holiday home videos here. If it’s a dinner party, offer to bring an appetizer or side dish. If it’s a game night, offer to bring a board or card game. If you’re not sure what to bring, a small host or hostess gift like a bottle of wine or decorative candle is always sure to please.
3. “Please leave your sister’s best friend’s cousin at home.”
Nothing says, “This party is going to stink if I go by myself,” like having someone the hostess doesn’t even know tag along. Not only that, but bringing uninvited guests can make for a very awkward night for the host, the uninvited guest and other party guests. So, whatever you do, don’t bring uninvited guests to the party. The only exception to this rule is if the party invitation specifically instructs you to bring a friend, like in the event of a purse party, make-up party or kitchen supply party.
4. “I know they are NOT looking in my hall closet!”
If you need to use the restroom, by all means ask where the restroom is. However, when a hostess invites party guests into her home, it’s not an open invitation to meander through each room and gawk at the décor. If curiosity gets the best of you, simply state, “Wow, Wendy! I’ve never been to your home before! It’s so beautiful.” This will let the hostess know you are interested in seeing her home and gives her the opportunity to offer to give a tour.
5. “Oh, I’m so sorry you don’t like the food!”
Don’t complain about the food! If you don’t like what’s being offered, simply don’t eat. By asking for something different to eat, you’re insulting the hostess and the food she likely spent hours preparing. At most parties, you’ll find a variety of culinary options. Find one thing you like and take an extra helping. If the hostess asks why you’re not eating something in particular, be honest without being rude.
6. “Really? You’re just going to leave your dirty dishes sitting on the coffee table?”
Clean up after yourself. A good hostess will offer to take your plate if she sees that you’ve finished and it’s perfectly acceptable to let her. But a good guest will notice when the hostess is otherwise occupied and take their own empty plates, drink ware and silverware to the kitchen. If it’s disposable, throw it away. We’re not saying that you should start washing all the dishes. Even if you just place the items into the sink, it’s better than leaving them for others to clean up later.
7. Are they really taking their wine home with them?
When someone brings a bottle of wine or champagne to a party, it’s considered a hostess gift. Leave the wine behind. If you brought an appetizer, side dish or dessert, ask the hostess if she would like you to leave it. Often times, party hostesses don’t want to be stuck with a refrigerator full of leftovers and unidentified serving dishes. If possible, bring food items in disposable containers to avoid having to leave behind your good casserole dishes or dessert trays.
8. Did they leave without saying “good-bye?”
Always let the hostess know when you’re leaving. Not only is this common courtesy, but telling the hostess that you’re leaving allows her the opportunity to properly say goodbye, ensure that you received your party favors and say “thank you” for coming to the party. This leads us to tip #9…
9. Gee, don’t say “Thank you” or anything.
You would think this goes without saying … and you’d be wrong. In this day and age of technology, it’s not uncommon to receive a “thank you” via text, tweet or facebook update. That’s all fine and dandy, but don’t forget to actually say “thank you” to your hostess prior to leaving. Whether it’s a party for 3 guests or 30, planning and executing a nice party is no easy feat. Show some common courtesy and thank your hostess face to face.
10. Okay, you’ve overstayed your welcome … please get out of my house.
Take a hint. If you’re the last one at a party and the hostess is putting the food away, washing dishes and wiping down the countertops, its time to get your things and leave. The only exception to this rule is if the hostess specifically asks you to stay. Otherwise, don’t be “that” guest. Know when the party is over.