Social Etiquette and Good Manners/Invitation to diner


I received an invitation to diner. (Via Text).

Diner will be around 3 0r 4 Pm. come around 2PM.

That seems very impractical, to sit around some ones house for up to 2 hours before dinner is served ( as it happened it was 2 1/2 hours). It was very frustrating for me.

Most diners that I am invited to say dinner is at 5 PM, for example and all the guests start to show up a10 to 15 min before 5 PM.
Would it be proper to mention this to the Hosts? Is this proper? or should I show up at 3:30PM next time.

Dear Tim:

The invitation to dinner you received was an invitation to spend time with the host and host family, not just to be fed.  If you don't want to spend the time before the formal dinner time with them, you shouldn't accept their invitation at all.  They specified 2pm as an arrival time so the event starts at 2pm, not when they put the food on the table sometime between 3 and 4pm.
By all means, don't mention your disdain of their invitation to your hosts.  That would be incredibly rude and insensitive.
Also, in the future, if the invitation states 5pm - you arrive between 5pm and 5:10pm - not 10 to 15 minutes beforehand.  To arrive before your hosts expect you to arrive is rude and inconsiderate.  
No matter what time the invitation states the event starts, you should arrive then with no more than 10 minutes grace time after the stated time.

Social Etiquette and Good Manners

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Cynthia W. Lett


Proper manners with friends,family,colleagues,neighbors and everyone else you know.


I have been an etiquette expert teaching and consulting on the subject worldwide since 1983. I started and serve as the Executive Director of the International Society of Protocol & Etiquette Professionals and am considered a leader in the field of etiquette and protocol training and execution. I edited "Etiquette for Dummies" and have recently written "Lett's Talk - Everyday Etiquette Dilemmas and What to Do about Them". My book, "That's So Annoying:An Etiquette Expert on the World's Most Irritating Habits And What To Do About Them" was published in 2009 and is available wherever books are sold. I taught the Business Protocol class to Master's level students at the George Washington University, Washington, DC for seven years I served as Chief of Protocol for MCI Telecommunications for three years.

International Society of Protocol & Etiquette Professionals, ASTD, PCMA, National Speakers Association

I have been quoted over 700 times in the past 5 years worldwide. Publications include Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Washington Times, NY Times, Washington Business Journal, USA Today, Associated Press, London Times, Newsweek Japan edition, Newsweek US edition and many many more.

I am a Certified Etiquette Professional (CEP) and Certified Protocol Professional (CPP) earned by examination through ISPEP. I have a Master's degree in hospitality law and undergrad degrees in Restaurant & Hotel Management and Public Relations/Interpersonal Communications from Purdue University.

Awards and Honors
Who's Who Worldwide,Who's Who of American Women, Distinguished Darden Professor (Purdue University).

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