Online and app dating might be a totally acceptable form of finding a finding a mate these days — but is taking an Internet match to a wedding really OK?
“One of our groomsmen wants to invite a Tinder date to our wedding,” wrote CheckYesJewliet on Reddit. “We were planning on giving him a plus-one but after hearing about this, I am having second thoughts.”
To be clear, he isn’t going to be swiping right to pick up a girl the day of the nuptials. Rather, he recently met a girl on Tinder and wants to bring her. In which case, does it actually matter how these two met? Not so much, according to etiquette expert Elaine Swann.
“From the couple’s perspective, in terms of doing the invites, it’s my opinion that the plus-ones should be extended to individuals who you know [are] in some sort of committed relationship,” Swann tells Yahoo Style. “If you’re concerned about having random people at your wedding, don’t extend the invitation.”
After the invitation’s been sent, that’s about where the couple’s say in the matter ends. "If a bride says, ‘I’m going to extend an invitation for everybody in the wedding party to bring a plus-one,’ then you just have to accept whomever their plus-one is and hope that they would have the best judgment,“ Swann explains. "Whether they met them on Tinder or met them walking down the street or bumping into the person at a local coffee shop, for whatever reason, the groomsman or the bridesmaid feels comfortable enough to invite them to the wedding. It’s not up to us to judge — even though we know that Tinder’s really a hookup site!”
On the flip side, should the groomsman really test out this budding relationship at such an important day in buddy’s life? As user ataraxia commented on Reddit: “Your groomsman is going to be busy doing groomsman things, leaving his Tinder date alone a lot of the time. Since she won’t know anyone else at the wedding, that’s not going to be fun for her.” Or, maybe she’s just outgoing enough that it will be — also not for us to judge.
Swann advised all wedding guests in doubt about their plus-one status to check in with the bride. “Rather than telling them, ‘Hey I’m going to bring this person along with me,’ the best thing to do is to ask them whether or not they can accommodate another individual,” she says. “If the answer is no, then you just have to pull yourself up by the bootstraps and accept their answer. Recognize that it’s one day out of your life, but it’s a very important day for this bride and groom.”
In the end, it seems CheckYesJewliet has come up with a plan to make everyone comfortable — and she has Swann’s seal of approval. Her groomsman can bring his new date, but in case things don’t work out, she won’t necessarily be in all the reception photos. Rather than seating the whole wedding party at one table, the bride and groom will share a smaller “sweetheart” table with their maid of honor, best man, and their respective dates. “That way we are getting what we want, and he gets what he wants without the drama.”