No specific practices are set in stone, but there are some common elements.
- In theory, anyone who has a part in the ceremony may be invited. But again there are no rules set in stone here. Some couples choose to open it up to include close friends. Others want to restrict the rehearsal dinner to a much more intimate setting that includes only parents and the bride and groom.
- Printed invitations are still a good idea, though some of that activity has shifted online. This makes it easy to track who is coming and who isn't and saves on printing and mailing costs. Be sure to invite guests well in advance in either case.
- It isn't mandatory to eat at the most expensive restaurant in town. But if you plan to have a rehearsal dinner at all, something a little nicer than the usual is appropriate. Be sure to make reservations at least a week in advance.
Do you need to have your rehearsal dinner at a restaurant? Absolutely not. There's nothing that says you can't have a more relaxed, informal rehearsal dinner at someone's home. An at-home rehearsal dinner gives you an opportunity to organize some fun games where everyone can get to know the couple better, such as a game of charades where you act out scenes from the bride or groom's life.