10 Things to Do to Be a Good Thanksgiving Guest

Thanksgiving is right around the corner.  It’s so weird this year because my birthday falls on Thanksgiving.  I guess we can celebrate with turkey and pie.  I’m definitely not complaining.  All that great food and family is a great way to spend my birthday.  I did want to talk about some ways to be a good guest if you’re not hosting Thanksgiving this year. It is so important to the host that you have a great holiday.  It only comes once a year and the host puts so much time and effort into that couple of hours to make sure that you have an amazing holiday.  Here are some things you can do to make sure you’re doing your part.

RSVP in enough time.   I have never seen a table that wasn’t already set for the dinner when I arrived.  The host usually does this the day or 2 before.  You need to let them know if you are coming and how many people in your party are attending so they can do a proper head count for seating purposes and food prep.  Plus it’s just polite.

Don’t bring food if you weren’t asked to.  The host has already meticulously planned to the minute how all the food will come out the oven, where it will go on the table and any other aspects of the day dealing with food. You don’t want to mess up the flow of the schedule by bringing a casserole that needs to be warmed up in the oven.  If you were asked to bring something make sure it is ready and has all the serving pieces it needs.

Ask if you can help, but if not get out of the kitchen.  If the host doesn’t need your help you need to go into another part of the house and mingle with the other guests.  It is touch and go for the host at the very end when all the food is coming together at the same exact time and they don’t need you watching everything they do.  If the appetizers were placed in the kitchen then you can hover there.

Put away your phone.  Tell the rest of your friends and family happy Thanksgiving before you get to your destination.  Post your picture to Facebook after the dinner.  You want to be engaged with the people at the dinner and don’t want to seem rude to the host.

Compliment the food.  If there was something you particularly loved speak up.  Be genuine and specific about what you liked.  I’m sure the host will appreciate the compliment and that you took the time to give a specific comment about the dinner.

Be social with everyone.   Try to talk to everyone.  You may not get an opportunity at dinner to talk to someone across the other side of the table.  Try before and after the dinner  to introduce yourself and small talk with everyone there.  You never know how your conversation may have made someone feel welcomed.

Help clean up!  This is so important.  Take your plate into the kitchen and ask the host if you can help them clean up.  There has been so much going into the prep of the day that I’m sure the host is spent by the end of dinner.   You asking to help clean up can be such a bright part of their evening.  There is still dessert to go so you helping gives them a little break.

Thank your host for having you.  You always want to thank the host for having you over to their home for dinner.  They took great effort in making sure you had an amazing holiday.

I hope these tips will be helpful if you are going to be a guest this year for the big Thanksgiving day.   I wish you a happy Thanksgiving and if you are traveling, have a safe trip!

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