Groups of guests chatting at partyWedding season is about to go into full swing! You’re probably already been getting invitations in the mail, and already sent out your RSVPs. And if you’re single, you might not always be able to find a date or a companion to bring with you to the big event.

Does the thought of attending a wedding without a date give you pause? It shouldn’t! You can still have a wonderful time—and make a great contribution to the festivities—when you attend a wedding by yourself!

Here are some handy wedding etiquette and survival tips you can use whenever you “fly solo” at a wedding.

Be OK with where the wedding hosts seat you.

You may have a preconceived idea about where you want to sit during the reception—and who you want to sit with—but go with the flow and accept the seating arrangements as they are. Who knows? There could be a good reason the bride and groom put you at a particular table. Perhaps they’ve put a few single guests at a table together so they can support each other. Probably there is a person at your table the hosts think could be a good connection to make in business. Perhaps one of the other guests shares some of the same interests as you. And maybe…just maybe…the hosts are trying to choreograph a new romantic connection for you! Whatever the reason, just have fun at the table you’re assigned to. After all, there will be plenty of time during the reception to mingle!

Don’t be shy about approaching groups.

When you’re at a wedding alone, attempting to join conversations can feel a little intimidating. Don’t let it! If there’s a group of people who look fun and interesting, don’t be afraid to approach them! If people catch wind that you’re there by yourself, they’ll probably be even more inclined to include you in their conversations and activities. And a great ice-breaking question to start new conversations is always, “So, how do you know the bride/groom?” After all, you all have your friendship with the bride and groom in common!

Team up with other lone guests.

Chances are, you’re not the only person flying solo. Pretty soon into the proceedings, you will either spot or be spotted, by another guest flying solo. They might be feeling awkward and out of place too. So, lend your support! That way, you both will have somebody to lean on and check in with! This can help you feel a little less lonely during your “solo” wedding excursion!

Be helpful.

As a solo guest, you might be in a better position to be helpful to the bride and groom than other guests who might have dates—or even children—to attend to. Ask the bride or groom if there’s anything you can do to help out! Even a small task like taking a photo, moving a few gifts, helping a child put their dinner plate together, or helping an elderly person to their table could do a lot to help take some pressure off of the wedding hosts.

Smile!

It may sound like a silly reminder, but having a bright, happy face is a sure way to attract people to you and be made more of a part of the festivities.

Put your phone away.
It can be tempting when we’re alone to occupy ourselves on our smartphones. But when you’re face-down in your phone, you’re much less approachable to the other wedding guests. To fully be present in the festivities and be able to pay full attention to the bride, groom and other guests, put your mobile phone away. Or, resolve only to use it for taking pictures!

Be careful with your alcohol intake.

Nobody wants to be the person who gets remembered as being the drunken mess at the wedding reception. Moderating your drinking is even more vital when you attend a wedding solo because you don’t have a date to help keep you out of trouble! Limiting your alcohol consumption is the best way to avoid any embarrassing drunken mishaps or faux pas.

Have a great time!
Even if you didn’t really want to attend the wedding solo, just remember: this day isn’t about you. It’s about the bride and groom and their love for each other! So, join the celebration and help send the couple off into a bright future. And remember, you won’t always be “flying solo.” So, enjoy your autonomy during this occasion, contribute to the fun, and make some great memories!