Etiquette is one important thing as it helps us stay within the flexible bounds, present ourselves in confidence and authority, give relationships and ourselves a chance to grow both at a personal level as well as in professional life. It also goes a long way in lighting up the mood at dinner parties, wedding receptions, and other formal and social meetings. On the other hand, lack of decorum can create a whole lot of uncomfortable scenarios that may make guests and visitors uncomfortable and worse still, spoil the mood for a great party.
Most people have been looking for meaningful opinions on how long one should stay when invited for dinner. A majority of people have a difficult time deciding the precise time to leave and end up giving some funny excuses just to leave. Failing to know when to leave creates tension between the guest and the host and in turn affects the quality of time and conversations, having in mind that the host invited you for dinner so the two of you can enjoy a meal and some good time together.
To avoid getting into the above-said scenarios a few things could help:-
The first thing to do is to enquire beforehand on the time the dinner starts and ends as you confirm the invitation. This will make it easy to leave when time is up and avoid inconveniencing your host.
Another key thing would be the guest arriving on time as it allows both parties to have ample time and avoid having a rushed dinner. It is also rude and disrespectful to keep your host waiting and have them reheat the food. Always remember the host had other things to do but afforded you some time to enjoy with them. In the event of having unavoidable matters to attend to before showing up then it’s polite to communicate early enough to allow the host time to adjust their schedule.
It’s always good to have in mind that the host does a great deal of planning for your enjoyment and comfort so consider a kind gesture like bringing with you their favorite bottle of wine, fresh flowers, a box of chocolates, or any other gift. This makes the host feel that you thought about them as well as they did. Try lending a hand in cleaning up after dinner and thank them for the meal, complementing on two or three dishes.
Check this too: What to Bring to a Dinner Party
Signs that It’s Time to Leave
Sometimes things don’t happen as planned or the party may go beyond the expected time. Below are some cues to look out for just in case you got overtaken by events and have overstayed.
No more drinks
It’s time to bounce if your host hasn’t offered more drinks in an hour’s time. The host will stop serving drinks when they think you’ve had enough or better still call out for the last round.
Know time is up when the music stops playing and you’re surrounded by a strange silence. This is a strong signal that the host has enough so resist the urge to ask for one more jam.
Your host might have been time conscious throughout the dinner, but when they start glancing at their watch after every 15 seconds then it’s time for you to start getting ready to leave.
It’s time to leave when you see your host start doing major tidying up like taking the garbage out or vacuuming the place. This cue is the same in any setting be it a lunch party or when you simply visited for tea or to check in on some folks.
Calling for a cab
This is another cue when the host offers to call a cab for you so wrap up your conversation and sincerely thank your host then leave.