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Your Cell Phone Has Not Been Invited To The Royal Wedding

Royal wedding etiquette experts have advised guests to Kate and William’s wedding that they may be asked by security to leave their cell phones outside the Abbey, but if they aren’t, they need to make sure a ringing phone is not heard by millions during a service broadcast live around the world.  Because if you don’t turn off your cell phone during the wedding, this is what happens:

For more etiquette “don’ts” for the upcoming royal wedding, read this article.   To sum it up,  1) Don’t be late, 2) Choose an outfit that blends in,   3)Don’t gobble, don’t gulp and for goodness sakes don’t get drunk at the reception, 4) Don’t initiate conversation with royals, and for God’s sake, don’t touch the Queen.


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  • Ange April 6, 2011, 8:10 am

    I don’t see anything particular specific royal wedding in these advises. Apart from not touching the Queen.
    Seems to be normal curtesy. But then, seeing the clip, not everybody is aware of this.

  • Abbie April 6, 2011, 8:42 am

    While I wish everyday cell phone etiquette were more common place, it is reasonable that the royal wedding ban on phones is less about being polite and respectful but more about DO NOT LET ANYONE TAKE PICTURES WE DO NOT APPROVE. When Prince Wills mother married, it would be pretty noticeable if a guest were taking pictures during the event. However, in this day and age, so many people have phones with cameras that the only way for the royal family to control what images go to the public is to ban phones all together.

    It is also quite concerning it must be stated not to touch the Queen. One should not go about touching strangers after the age of 5 anyway, Queen or not. Is Queen touching a serious problem?

  • aje April 6, 2011, 9:15 am

    I can’t believe he ANSWERED his PHONE! Oh my gosh, I’d be both angry and hurt if my brother answered the phone during my wedding…

  • Lizajane April 6, 2011, 9:16 am

    At what point in time did it become necessary for everybody to be reachable at all times?

    Cell phones are supposed to be a wonderful piece of technology to make our lives easier and safer, and they do. Until people get the mindset that a) I must have my cell phone turned on a within reach at all times and/or b) you must answer your cell phone any time anywhere. This just causes stress and worry instead of relieving them.

  • Michelle P April 6, 2011, 9:26 am

    Good grief, it sounds like he was in the middle of a prayer! Common sense, people, common sense!

  • Squashedfrog April 6, 2011, 9:28 am

    So… Im NOT allowed to approach the Queen, slap her on the bum and cry “whotcha Lizzy! Hows yer belly for spots?”.


  • Gemma April 6, 2011, 9:42 am

    Even the ring bearer is wondering what’s going on! Maybe even at his tender age, he knows better?

  • Ashley April 6, 2011, 10:28 am

    That is why the second I am in any place quiet, my phone goes on vibrate. I can’t believe he actually answered. I hope the couple is one who looks back on it now and laughs at it as just another thing that made their day THEIR day.

  • Enna April 6, 2011, 10:33 am

    In any wedding mobile phones should be switched off or left on silent and ignored if they do off. Can’t believe the man who answered his phone he should have swtiched it off when he relised it was going off. With the Royal Wedding if this happens millions of people will see it – so it will be considered more rude of the person and embraess them furthur.

  • ashley April 6, 2011, 11:12 am

    It doesn’t really say clearly in the article, but is the rule where you do not strike up a conversation with any royal unless they address you first there so that everyone is not trying to talk to them all at once and taking up too much of their time? I always thought that rule was just a respect kind of thing but I was never really sure.

  • Rug Pilot April 6, 2011, 11:21 am

    My phone is always on vibrate. It has a small quiet ding and then vibrates. That way I know it is my phone going off and I don’t reach for it every time I hear a ringtone. That way it doesn’t disturb anyone else. I won’t answer it if I am in a meeting, with clients, in a religious service, in class or anywhere else where I and others are busy.

  • ferretrick April 6, 2011, 11:21 am

    I really think the Bride in that clip has a temporary insanity defense all sewn up.

  • Shayna April 6, 2011, 11:27 am

    There are a few exceptions as to why a cell phone can, and should, be left on during times like these. For example, an ill parent or grandparent, if you work in a field where you must be reachable (ie. a doctor), etc. Otherwise, the phone should be off, or at the very least, set to silent.

  • Giles April 6, 2011, 11:36 am

    I actually met Queen Elizabeth on one of her visits to Canada. Despite the fact that I was in my Boy Scout uniform and with my troupe, she called me an adorable little girl. To be fair to her, looking back on the way my mother cut my hair it was kind of an honest mistake…

  • NotCinderell April 6, 2011, 11:56 am

    Unless he was waiting for a call from the hospital with an update on Grandma’s condition, I agree with everyone. There are times when the cell phone just needs to be off.

  • Louise April 6, 2011, 11:56 am

    I can understand forgetting to turn off your ringer in the wedding day morning rush. But for the love of all things purple, don’t answer your phone during the ceremony.

  • essie April 6, 2011, 12:01 pm

    Wedding experts “suggest” leaving cell phones outside? I would think the people in charge of security would insist on it! Cell phones are increasingly used as detonators for bombs.

  • SHOEGAL April 6, 2011, 12:06 pm

    I can’t believe this usher didn’t have better sense. Don’t answer the phone!! It shouldn’t have been on in the first place.

  • BB/VA April 6, 2011, 12:14 pm

    The only reason I can see for all cell phones on all the time is if you (or someone you love) is/are on a transplant list.

  • Chocobo April 6, 2011, 1:12 pm

    A friend of mine lived in Britain for a while and told us that many places he went had an ingenious way to get people to turn off their phones before the show: they played a recognizable standard ringtone that triggered people’s memories about their own phone. More often than not (the above groomsman aside…) I think phones ring because people forget that they are still on — until it is too late, of course.

    Some of the other rules are somewhat obvious and/or laughable though. Don’t wear something that stands out? Is there a color code?

    As for not touching the Queen — um, DUH. I’m an American and even I know that one.

  • Otto April 6, 2011, 1:20 pm

    I know of a wedding coordinator that has been known to, when a cell phone goes off in a wedding, to walk down to the person, request the phone, and remove the battery…

    At one wedding I was playing for, someone’s phone went off during the prelude, and they started having a loud conversation – – after about 30 seconds of that, I stopped. And Waited. Along with everyone else. When the guilty party realized that all eyes were on her, she bolted from the room – still talking!

  • Stephan April 6, 2011, 2:06 pm

    If a person is so dense as to allow their phone to ring during a wedding or any event of similar importance, they deserve to be thrown out.

  • Elizabeth April 6, 2011, 2:37 pm

    @Abbie- I was wondering about the Queen touching too. Maybe they are afraid the Doctor is going to show up. He does like dancing at weddings after all.

  • WrenskiBaby April 6, 2011, 2:47 pm

    At my church at the start of the service the pastor started reminding people to turn off their cell phones or put them on vibrate because we had several weeks in a row in which cell phones rang. One man even answered his phone and started talking. These days we have a permanent reminder in the bulletin, right at the top–“Please silence all cell phones.” As for weddings, he asks the couple whether they would mind if he announced that people should turn off their phones, because he doesn’t want this sad reflection of the times to be printed in a wedding bulletin that will be an important memento of the day. I wonder what the usher in the video has to say–whether he is defensive or sorry.

  • SJP April 6, 2011, 2:58 pm

    “One should not go about touching strangers after the age of 5 anyway, Queen or not.” – Abby

    Abby can you please clarify this statement? Kids under 5 years old are okay to be touched by strangers or it’s okay if THEY touch strangers? Either way it’s creepy.

  • SJP April 6, 2011, 2:59 pm

    Sorry, should have spelled your name Abbie. Apologies.

  • Bint April 6, 2011, 3:33 pm

    “Not touching the Queen” is really just to stop people trying to shake her hand, as opposed to grabbing her somewhere inappropriate.

    Chocobo, wearing something to make you stand out would just be considered bad taste; people would assume you were trying to upstage the bride or grab attention. Your friend is right – most shows and cinemas here will ask people to turn off their phones before the performance.

    I went to watch Charles and Di drive through our town to Britannia after their wedding, and the atmosphere was mad. Kate Middleton is a nice girl and the street parties will be fun, so while I’m no royalist, it’ll be a laugh and bring us lots of tourist £££ so hurrah. Actually, the one they should aim the etiquette at is Prince Philip aka ‘the gaffe-prone Duke’!

  • Chocobo April 6, 2011, 3:34 pm

    Giles….. LOL!

  • b-rock April 6, 2011, 4:50 pm

    I believe Abbie meant that while children may run around touching strangers, anyone over the age of 5 should know better. Not that it’s ok to touch children under the age of 5…

  • Chrysla April 6, 2011, 4:52 pm

    @Elizabeth: Ha Ha Ha!!! The Doctor does indeed like to shake a leg at weddings! While I don’t need to touch the Queen, I wouldn’t mind touching a few of the Doctor’s incarnations…

    Cell phone etiquette seems like such an obvious thing. Why are there so many people in this world that are so clueless? Before movie theaters put up reminders to turn the cell phones off, I used to stand up when the lights were dimmed and yell “TURN YOUR CELL PHONES OFF!!” Amazing how well that worked. Unfortunately it MORTIFIED my friend that usually attended with me. At first she would beg me not to do it this time, but then was always happy I did it while turning the brightest shade of red. I guess most people don’t have the gumption I do. Then again – was I maybe breaking an etiquette rule by yelling in a crowded theater as the lights dimmed? It was before any film or previews were rolling. I just don’t need a ringtone when I’m visiting Middle Earth.

  • LMVattimo April 6, 2011, 5:31 pm

    SJP: I think Abbie might be referring to the affinity some small children have for leg tackling. My mom has a friend whose daughter (3) will run up to people and hug their legs as a greeting. Her mom is addressing how that can be slightly inappropriate, but when kids are small they don’t always understand.

  • M April 6, 2011, 5:39 pm

    @ SJP, I believe what the poster meant was that kids over the age of 5 should know better than to touch strangers. Not creepy, funny actually.

  • Lady Antipode April 6, 2011, 10:13 pm

    Not initiating conversation with the royals is a matter of status. They are technically superior in position to just about everyone, and so have the right to initiate conversation with you only if THEY wish. Us commoners have the privilege of responding when such an honour is bestowed 🙂

    Similar ideas of status are apparent in the protocols of who greets whom first, and who is presented to someone (see Emily Post). Also, in some Asian cultures, seniority and status traditionally determine who speaks or greets whom first.

  • Mrelia April 6, 2011, 10:29 pm

    Spongebob: Remember Patrick, don’t touch the Queen.
    The Queen: Good morning, gentlemen.
    Patrick: Touch…

  • MeganAmy April 7, 2011, 6:08 am

    By our request, before our wedding ceremony started, our DJ announced to all guests to please silence their phones.

    I have tears in my eyes, that’s so funny!

  • Abbie April 7, 2011, 8:03 am

    SJP- MWHAHAAHAAHA! My monitor thanks you for the soda shower it just got when I read your comment.
    To clarify, I did not mean that strangers should be Benson & Stablering children.
    I meant if a toddler comes up to me and puts my leg in a bear hug, I should do my best not to look for the child’s handler to come get it. If a ten year old runs up and hugs me, it would be acceptable to pull away and firmly but nicely tell the minor that some people are very uncomfortable with uninvited physical contact. =)

  • Shannon April 7, 2011, 10:29 am

    Does anyone else read this and think, “Gosh, the royal wedding sounds like the lamest wedding EVER! No bright clothes, no getting drunk and flirting with bartenders, dull dull DULL!”

    When I got married, we kept the ceremony at a luxurious six minutes, which meant more time to party, and less time for anyone’s cellphone to go off.

  • Enna April 7, 2011, 12:03 pm

    @ Essie I was just going to say the same thing. Not only with secruity at royal weddings but with papaprazzi (might have spelt that wrong) at celebraty weddings too not to mention things like kidnapping and so on.

  • phoenix April 7, 2011, 1:03 pm

    Frankly, I think “don’t touch the queen” should be in ALL wedding announcements. Just to make people wonder- who exactly is this queen going to be?

    I like to use my old professor’s cell phone rule. If it goes off when it shouldn’t, it’s mine. And I can, and will, answer it, return a call, or go through your directory to tell your mum what a clod you are.

  • Michele April 7, 2011, 6:19 pm

    I was at a wedding where the photographer’s assistant, standing at the altar, knelt down and took a phone call. I took a photo (everyone was taking photos of the wedding at the time). Here’s the proof!


  • Fox April 7, 2011, 10:53 pm

    Abbie – Unfortunately, not everyone got the “no touching” memo on their sixth birthday. It’s uncomfortably common for oblivious people to tough you on the shoulder or arm while talking to you.. and of course, there’s always the possibility that some mook might stroll right up to the Queen and try to shake her hand. (Heaven forbid!) I’m sure nowadays this is partly a safety issue, but moreso one of respect – and if there’s one thing this very blog should tell you, it’s that some people have difficulty grasping that very basic concept. 😉

  • Rebecca April 8, 2011, 12:52 am

    Even if it’s on vibrate, people can hear it. It should be on “silent” or better yet, OFF during a wedding ceremony.

  • Calli Arcale April 8, 2011, 1:19 pm

    At one wedding I was playing for, someone’s phone went off during the prelude, and they started having a loud conversation – – after about 30 seconds of that, I stopped. And Waited. Along with everyone else. When the guilty party realized that all eyes were on her, she bolted from the room – still talking!

    That’s priceless! I like the idea of the wedding coordinator confiscating the batteries of any boor who actually answers the phone during a reception. (I mean seriously; if it’s an emergency, you have the phone on vibrate, and then leave the room before actually answering it. Or you let them leave a message, walk out of the room, and call them back. Answering in the ceremony itself is rude to both the people at the wedding *and* the caller.)

    My favorite “here’s what I think about your cell phone usage” story happened to my uncle, who is a self-admitted cell phone addict. (He did turn it off for every wedding he attended, though. There are lines that should not be crossed.) He was out hunting with a colleague, and during the event, paused to answer a not-at-all-emergency phone call. This was not the first time he’d done this sort of thing in front of this particular colleague. After he was done, the colleague politely asked if he could borrow his phone for a moment. “Sure,” said my uncle, and handed it to him. The guy hurled it into the air and blew it to pieces with his shotgun.

    Apparently this had become just a wee bit annoying to him. 😉 They remained friends afterward, but my uncle definitely got the message!

    I’ve heard of members of the wedding party doing a gag involving cell phones at the ceremony. Somebody calls one of the wedding party, specifically so they can be comically chewed out, which gets EVERYONE’s attention and acts as a gentle reminder to turn off the phones.

  • Geekgirl April 8, 2011, 4:44 pm

    At my friend’s wedding, a mobile (aka cellphone) went off, the bride looked round to see who it was – and it was the groom! A friend who couldn’t be there was calling him to wish him luck and ask if he was married yet! He didn’t answer it, and to be honest, it was a great tension-breaker, and made everyone laugh.

  • kingshearte April 9, 2011, 2:43 pm

    @Callie Arcale: That reminds me of a production of Trainspotting my husband did once. His “turn off your phone” message was delivered via a plant whose phone rang, only to have one of the characters storm out from backstage, beat the ever-living crap out of the plant, toss him out the door (bodily), and then turn and tell the rest of the room to turn their –BLEEEEEEEEEEEP– phones off.

    Apparently it was quite effective.

  • Cat April 9, 2011, 7:43 pm

    A friend of mine tells me that a teacher at his high school begins the first day of the school year demonstrating his cell phone policy (the bane of every teacher’s life these days).
    He gets one child from each of his incoming classes and gives him/her an old, inoperable cell phone and explains the role he/she will be playing in his class.
    Once class gets under way, the chosen child, seated in the middle front seat of the class, pulls out the “phone” to make a call. The teacher flies into a rage, snatches the cell phone, and stomps on it.
    Cell phone usage is not a problem in his class for the remainder of the year.

  • slythwolf April 9, 2011, 8:55 pm

    I think even if one is waiting for an update on an ill relative, one waits to receive it until after the ceremony. If it’s truly that serious, the bride and groom will understand why the concerned party is unable to attend.