Duties of Your Best Man And Groomsmen: A Checklist

What you expect of your best man/ groomsmen to do for the wedding vs. what do they expect their responsibilities to  be.

Deciding on who to include in your wedding party is no easy feat. Aside from the personal issues to consider, like those relating to personality, time available, and interest in being involved in a wedding, there is also the issue of ‘expectation’ to think of:

In order to help you both clarify what duties groomsmen usually fulfill, as well as what to consider when choosing yours, we’ve come up with a comprehensive checklist. Use this to help you narrow downthe group of men you want by your side on your big day.

Groom & Groomsman rolesThe Best Man

Your best man is ususally your best friend or relative, and there to offer considerable help in the lead-up to, during, and immediately following the wedding.

His responsibilities are, in chronological order:

  • Help the groom pick out suits
  • organise groomsmens’ suit fitting sessions
  • Plan and throw the buck’s party for the groom
  • Organise accommodation for groomsmen who aren’t local to the area
  • Keep groomsmen abreast of any scheduling changes
  • Arrange a groomsmens’ gift for the groom
  • Attend the rehearsal dinner
  • Prepare and give a speech at the rehearsal dinner, following the groom’s father
  • Help the groom get dressed on his wedding day
  • Ensure the groom gets to the church on time
  • Act as middle-man for all payments to be made on the day- collect the money from the groom, pay the officiant, wedding cake baker, etc
  • Ensure the groom has his marriage license with him
  • Keep the wedding rings safe until the ceremony
  • Organise the couple’s departure from the reception venue
  • Make sure all groomsmen look great at the wedding (including checking their boutonnieres)
  • Passing the rings onto the ring bearer (if there is one), making sure he knows exactly what to do
  • Standing by the groom during the ceremony
  • Hand over the rings during the ceremony, if there is no ringbearer
  • Escort the maid of honour down the aisle after the ceremony concludes
  • Sign the marriage license as an official witness
  • If the couple have not hired a driver, drive them to the reception venue
  • Organise groomsmen for photographs
  • Stand in for all photos necessary
  • Dance with the bride and maid of honour at some stage during the reception
  • If the couple are leaving for their honeymoon straight from the reception, help the groom change his clothing
  • Either ensure the limo is at the reception to pick the bride and groom up, or have the car they’re using decorated. In both cases, check that their suitcases are already packed in the car.


Your groomsmen should mainly consist of some of your closest friends and family. Often, soon to be brothers-in-law are also asked to take part in order to have an official role on the day, as well as to feel more included. A number of factors go into choosing who to include, such as how long you’ve known the person, how close you are to them, and how reliable they are. Again, consider what your groomsmen will be responisble for before you make your final decisions.

Some typical groomsman responsibilities include:

  • Attending all suit fittings
  • Helping the groom pick out the wedding suits
  • Helping to plan and pay for the buck’s night
  • Participating in any particular wedding traditions
  • Attending the wedding rehearsals
  • Arrive before other guests at the wedding
  • Greet and seat guests at the ceremony
  • Escort mother of the bride/groom to her seat
  • Escort a bridesmaid down the aisle before and after the ceremony
  • Helping to make the reception as pleasant as possible for guests (e.g. talking/ dancing with people who are unacommpanied)
  • Providing practical assistance with gifts
  • Helping out with any unforseen complications
  • Dancing with bridesmaids at the reception
  • Loading the honeymoon suitcases into the car (if couple are leaving from reception)
  • Decorating the car with which the bride and groom will leave their reception

Considering these responsibilities, you should now be able to figure who, out of your pool of family and friends, will be suited to your needs and even have fun in the process. Using this list as a reference will help to not only clarify who does what when, but ensure the process is made as straightforward and enjoyable as possible!