The holiday season is upon us and there’s a good chance you’ve already got a few gatherings on your calendar! You’ve heard of the host with the most, but today we’re filling you in on how to be the best guest this holiday season. And even when it’s not a holiday season. Let’s get started!
First and foremost, if you’ve been invited to a party, give the host a clear ‘yes’ or ‘no’ and stick with it. We totally understand that life gets in the way sometimes, as will the host, but to say you’re coming then not show or to show up when you had originally said no, well that’s just not cool. Oh, and be sure to let your host know as soon as you can. Waiting until the very last minute is also not cool.
Let your host know if you have any food allergies or restrictions. The last thing they want to do is serve something you can’t have. This way there will be no surprises anywhere and you won’t have to grab a burger on your way home. (Unless you just want to!)
Bring your host a little gift. It doesn’t have to be expensive or over-the-top, just a little something to say thanks. A bottle of wine, a bouquet of flowers, or even a delicious-smelling candle are all solid choices and the host will love this extra touch.
Ask what you can bring to make their load a little lighter. Odds are you’ll be tasked with something small like picking up a tub of whipped cream or bringing napkins, and while this is a small task for you, it’s one less thing the host has to worry about.
Be considerate but not overly considerate. For instance, if you ask the host if you can help and they say no, then pour yourself a drink, go mingle and make sure you aren’t lingering where they’re trying to get things done.
This is going to sound a little crazy, but before you go, make sure you’re prepared to carry the conversation if you need to. Almost anywhere there is a large gathering of people you can count on awkward silences. Avoid this by being ready at any moment to jump in. As silly as it sounds, jot some fun questions down in your phone, and if you notice a dreaded silence coming, whip those questions out. They’re bound to get people talking and having a good time. An example of a question would be: if you could invite (3) guests to dinner living or dead, who would you choose and why?
Don’t touch the TV remote, or the music, or ask for the WiFi password. You can fiddle with all of these things once you get home. (Your own home.)
Offer timely help. If you notice the host looking a little frazzled or see something that needs to be done right away, hop in.
Leave at the right time and be sure to thank your host. Look for cues like conversation lulls that no one is saving or the host yawning, and begin to make your exit. Hosting is hard work so make sure you express your gratitude on the way out and let them know they did a great job hosting.