How to be a good Thanksgiving Guest

Evelyn Reyes

Hosting Thanksgiving dinner is no walk in the park. It takes days of preparation and hours of hard work in the kitchen. Which is why it is important that when you show up to your friend’s, neighbor’s, in-law’s or distant relative’s Thanksgiving dinner you do your part and be a good guest. Here are 10 tips that will make you the best guest at the dinner table this Thanksgiving:

Let your host know well in advance if you have any dietary restrictions

Make your host aware of any dietary restrictions (allergies, gluten-free, vegetarian, etc.) This will allow your host to plan accordingly and ensure you are able to enjoy the meal as well.

Bring a side or dessert (only if instructed to)

If your host has given you the OK to bring a dessert or side, bring something everyone can enjoy. You can never go wrong with a yummy homemade pie. Pro guest tip: bring your own serving utensils. Your host doesn’t have time to prepare extra utensils for your dish.

Don’t show up early, but be punctual

The hours/minutes before any Thanksgiving dinner are CHAOS. The host is just trying to get everything arranged before guests start walking in the door. Showing up early will only give the host unwanted stress and will probably cause them to run behind on their set schedule. So if your host said the dinner starts at 6:30PM, show up between 6:30 – 7PM. Don’t arrive any later that half an hour past the time given, unless you want to risk not eating any turkey.

If you are close to the host, offer him/her to come over early to help set up.

Lend a helping hand

When you arrive ask the host if he/she needs any help with setting up. If the hosts declines your help stay out of the kitchen!

Show up hungry, but not too hungry

It’s important to show up with a big appetite to Thanksgiving, but not to the point you get “hangry”. Grab a snack for the drive over to help control your hunger until its time to feast.

Do NOT complain

Whatever you do, do NOT complain about ANYTHING specially in front of the host. It doesn’t matter if the turkey is too dry or the mac & cheese isn’t cheesy enough, do not make the host feel bad by making any negative comment.

Bring a gift

If your host insisted that you do not need to bring any sides or desserts, treat them with a gift they will love.

Gifts your host will appreciate:

  • Wine
  • Flowers
  • Cheese & crackers
  • Draft beer

Unplug and engage

Take this time to unplug from your phone and socialize with the people that surround you. The only time you should be on your phone is when snapping a good picture of your delicious meal and those who accompany you.

Help clean up

Lend the host a helping hand when its time to clean up. There’s ton of dishes to wash and trash to clean up, so this is your time to shine and become the best guest of the night.

Compliment and thank the host

Before you head out, make sure to take a moment to compliment the host on the delicious meal and thank him/her for organizing such a fun gathering.

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