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A Guide to Planning Your Chinese Wedding: Big Day Rundown & Timeline

Image: A stunning wedding venue on Hong Kong Island Chinese weddings are rich in tradition and steeped in cultural significance. To ensure your special day is executed flawlessly, it is important to have a well-planned...

wedding hotel Image: A stunning wedding venue on Hong Kong Island

Chinese weddings are rich in tradition and steeped in cultural significance. To ensure your special day is executed flawlessly, it is important to have a well-planned timeline. In this article, we will guide you through the various customs and rituals, offering insights into the perfect Chinese wedding timeline. So let's dive in!

Hair Combing Ceremony: 0:00

The hair combing ceremony takes place either the night before the wedding or on the morning of the big day. The parents of the couple perform this ritual in their respective homes, symbolizing the couple's transition into adulthood. The timing of this ceremony usually depends on the auspicious hours according to the Chinese calendar.

Hair & Makeup for the Bridal Party: 06:00 - 08:30

During these early hours, makeup artists work their magic on the bride, her mother, and bridesmaids. While getting ready, the bridal party also enjoys a simple breakfast and prepares for the exciting wedding door games.

Groomsmen’ Arrival: 07:30 - 08:30

The groom and his entourage arrive at the wedding hotel, ready for the bridal game and the tradition of giving red envelopes to the bridesmaids. This is also the time for the groomsmen to have breakfast and get into the celebratory spirit.

Photographing the Preparations Image: Capturing the behind-the-scenes moments

Photographing the Preparations: 08:00 - 08:30

The photographer and videographer arrive to capture the bride's preparations. They immortalize every detail, from the dress and accessories to behind-the-scenes moments and group pictures of the bridesmaids. These photographs will be cherished for a lifetime.

Groomsmen Photoshoot: 08:30 - 09:00

The photographers shift their focus to the groomsmen, capturing the excitement as they go to pick up the bride. This moment holds special significance, as it marks the beginning of the bride's journey to her groom.

Heng Tai Games: 09:00 - 09:30

During the Heng Tai Games, the groom and his friends must complete challenges set by the bride's friends. They must prove their love and dedication before being allowed to take the bride away. This fun-filled tradition adds a touch of excitement and humor to the wedding day.

Tea ceremony wedding Image: A traditional Chinese wedding tea ceremony

Chinese Wedding Tea Ceremony at the Bride’s: 09:30 - 10:00

After the groom successfully retrieves his bride, they participate in a wedding tea ceremony at the bride's family home. It is a beautiful moment of respect and unity. The groom kneels in front of his father-in-law, while the bride kneels in front of her mother. They serve tea to their parents and older relatives in a specific order, following the age or level of closeness.

Tea Ceremony at the Groom’s: 10:00 - 10:30

Next, the couple performs a tea ceremony at the groom's home. They serve tea to the groom's parents, following the same customs and gestures as in the previous ceremony.

End of the Wedding Tea Ceremony

After the tea ceremonies, the newlyweds get ready for departure. They take photos with the bridesmaids and groomsmen, or prepare for the wedding dress change and the marriage registration. This marks the end of the tea ceremony and sets the stage for the next chapter of their wedding day.

Important Chinese Wedding Traditions


  • Friends should avoid saying "goodbye" when the bride departs from the wedding hotel.
  • Unmarried elder siblings should not be present during the bride's departure.
  • Prepare three essentials for departure: a red umbrella, rice, and green beans.
  • The bridesmaid accompanying the bride to the groom's house must be unmarried.
  • The groom's parents should not witness the bride's arrival.

Chinese wedding tea ceremony Image: Preparing for the Chinese wedding tea ceremony

Chinese Wedding Tea Ceremony

To ensure a successful tea ceremony, certain preparations are required. These include:

  • A pair of red kneeling cushions.
  • Tea sets for the ceremony, specifically for parents and elders.
  • Wedding party paper cups for peers.
  • Tea leaves or tea bags (avoid diet tea as it may symbolize a lack of prosperity).
  • Boiling water for brewing tea.

Each elder should be served two cups of tea, with each cup containing two lotus seeds for blessings and hope, as well as two red dates for good luck. Three bridesmaids assist with the ceremony, taking care of the tea preparation, conveying auspicious blessings, and assisting with the safekeeping of gold jewelry.

Elevate Your Big Day & Chinese Tea Ceremony at One-Eight-One Hotel

wedding hotel Image: Host your wedding at One-Eight-One Hotel

At One-Eight-One Hotel, we understand the importance of every detail on your wedding day. Our wedding packages are designed to elevate your celebration and create unforgettable memories. Our package includes a one-night stay in a luxurious Harbour Suite, daily breakfast, wedding red bedding, and complimentary use of wedding essentials, such as a teapot set, kneeling cushions, and a clothes steamer. We also offer convenient parking options, late check-out, and discounts for second room bookings.

To book your stay at One-Eight-One Hotel or to inquire about our wedding packages and venues, feel free to contact us via phone at (852) 3181 1650 or email at [email protected].

Make your wedding day truly special with One-Eight-One Hotel. We look forward to being a part of your love story!

Kindly read the full Terms & Conditions before booking.

Now that you have a comprehensive understanding of the Chinese wedding timeline and traditions, you can plan your special day with confidence. Enjoy this beautiful journey and savor every moment as you embark on a lifetime of love and happiness.