Protocol and customs at the Dutch weddings

Life brought me to The Netherlands a couple of months ago. During this time, I have had the chance to know the country’s customs, thus, part of its protocol. Today I would like to share some particular customs they have when organising a wedding. As in my country, Spain, first of all we have a religious or civil ceremony. Then, they usually host a cocktail to their guests while the groom and the bride are in the photographic session. When they are back, takes place the lunch or dinner. And at the end, takes place a party with music and lots of fun.

Those stages are the same in Spain and in The Netherlands. The difference between both cultures consist in not all guest are attending to all of them. When Dutch couples decide to get married, they make a guest list sorted out depending on who attends to which phase. For instance, there will be guests attending to the ceremony but not to the lunch or the party. On the other hand, some guest will be just invited to the party. And, other guests, will attend to all of them.

I have always said that culture is very close to protocol, thus, to customs. In such a short time living in The Netherlands, I have realised that they are kind, welcoming and entrepreneurs, but at the same time, they try to do things simple and in the most optimal way. Therefore, depending on the relation with each person they invite them to one or another stage. We don’t need to feel obliged to invite someone or spend money with people that we don’t have a close relation. It is a practical point of view that makes sense with their culture.

To me this Dutch custom is a cultural shock. I cannot imagine getting married and not inviting everybody to the whole event. In fact, I think it would be seen as rude in the Spanish culture. You can come to the ceremony, but not to have lunch. I definitely, do not see this in Spain. What do you think? How is done in your country?


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