From Just Engaged to Just Married: The Complete Groom Wedding Checklist

Hands On

Congratulations, man. You’re engaged! Now you just sit back, relax, and the wedding will work itself out eventually, right? Not so much.

Wedding planning is a team game, so don’t slack off. While your bride-to-be and her family will inevitably take on some of the biggest tasks, the groom’s role is to be a sort-of wedding ninja, helping with all the right things at all the right times (without having to ask about it). Remember, the goal is to minimize your partner’s stress—and maximize the good vibes.

To help, here’s our checklist of to-dos to be a worthy groom at every stage of the proceedings…


[  ] Get the marriage license

So easy even you can do it. It’s a fun adventure to pick this up together, but the groom should handle the boring paperwork and stuff.

[  ] Plan the honeymoon

You and your fiance will probably collaborate on the brainstorming process (do we go to Hawaii? Europe? An island with an unpronounceable name and limited access to internet?), but your job is to be the logistics guy. Book the flight, book the hotel, print the reservation, get the bottle of champagne on ice in the Kapua Suite, etc.

[  ] Pick your squad

Picking your groomsmen and bridesmaids is an obvious task, but you should also single out some ushers. The rule of thumb is about 1 usher per 50 people.

[  ] DJ/band

Seems small, but this person can single-handedly sink your wedding or take it to the stratosphere. Many like to give the DJ or band full control, others have a list of “must plays,” while some even give the red light to specific songs. (Don’t you dare play the Chicken Dance at my nuptials!)

[  ] Rehearsal Dinner

Traditionally, this is one that falls on the groom and his family. Your fiance will be plenty busy planning the big show…so it will look good to have this dialed in by yourself.

[  ] Arrange Transportation

This is another ball that’s traditionally in the groom’s court. How are guests getting to/from your wedding? What about the reception? And the afterparty? Did you think of access for the grandparents


[  ] Day-of gifts

It’s a nice touch to get something special for your bride and your groomsmen to celebrate the big day. Our pick would be something personal, even a bit sentimental. This is the perfect example of “coming together”, and that’s what gifts are for, right?

[  ] Thank you toast

Depending how you’d like your ceremony and reception to flow, some grooms do a brief thank you toast. No need to have a super articulate speech prepared (you’ll have enough going on), but it is a classy move to give a wholehearted thanks to your parents, your new in-laws, or whoever else made your wedding dream a reality.

[  ] Don’t get wasted

This is a small job, but it bears mentioning. Keep it to a drink an hour, champ (at least until the afterparty).


[  ] Enjoy the honeymoon

You planned it all out beforehand, so your mind is clear and your heart is full!

[  ] Thank You Notes

Remember that brief, classy speech you made at the wedding? Now you get to do it for each guest. Give a personal touch to the notes and let your guests know how special they made the day.

After all that, you’re off the hook. You just need to concentrate on all those husband duties til death do you part.