The Most Essential Best Man Duties

We’re still in the middle of prime wedding rush season. You’ve certainly gotten several wedding invitations in the mail. Maybe you’ve even been asked to be the best man. Make sure you know what Best Man Duties you’ll be expected to fulfill.

Best Man Duties Before the Wedding

Plan the bachelor party. As in, REALLY have a plan. Ask the groom who he wants invited. Oftentimes the bachelor party includes more than just the groomsmen. Get with the groom to schedule it on the right day/time that won’t conflict with stuff like the rehearsal dinner, etc. Some best men have even scheduled a full day of activities. Just make sure it’s stuff the guy likes to do.

Help arrange wedding accommodations for out-of-town groomsmen. Consider yourself in charge of updating any of the groomsmen to any change in plans, schedule, etc.

Organize the groomsmen’s gift for the groom. Present it at the killer bachelor party you’re throwing.

Best Man Duties During the Wedding

Get the paparazzi off his back. I’m not talking about photographers. At my buddy Nick’s wedding everyone was all over this guy’s jock the 1-2 hours leading up to the ceremony. The best man, Bryan, got everyone together (it was mostly the groomsmen and ushers) and let them know that the groom was doing just fine. And they didn’t need to keep asking him how he was doing or if he needed anything. If the groom needs help, he’ll probably ask for it. If he’s anxious, you bringing it up won’t help.

Keep the boys in line. Make sure that photographs are going off without a hitch and all the dudes are listening to the wedding planner.

Hold onto the ring. Protect this with your life. This may be the most classic of Best Man Duties.

Decorate the getaway car. Plan ahead and make some big memories. If you’re not the most outrageous prank artist, enlist another groomsman to help.

Dance. If the reception is lacking energy, get out there and spice it up.

Give the first toast. You’ll be expected to make the first toast. Even if you’re more afraid of public speaking than death, you still HAVE to do it. Of all the best man duties, he’ll remember you letting this one slide.

Here’s my little guide to making a good toast:

  • Write it down! In bullet-points, not word for word.
  • Start by saying “Hello,” and saying some thanks to the bride and grooms parents as well as the guests and anyone else awesome.
  • Share something funny but don’t shame the man.
  • Say something deep. As in genuine. Not the casual “It’s gonna be great to see you grow old together” or “You’re love is so strong it’’s..just amazing.” Lame. Say something that YOU would say.
  • Don’t drone on.
  • Toast them. I was the best man at my brother’s wedding and sat down before having everyone raise their glass to the bride and groom. I got back up and finished it off right, but yeah, don’t forget that part (excuse me, I was only 18).
  • Hand it off to the Maid of Honor, or whoever else wants to make a toast. Also, check in to see if a father wants to make the first toast.
Best Man Duties After the Wedding

This list is easy to knock out. Check in with the family as they may desire to do most of this.

  • Help with clean-up
  • Return the tuxes
  • Drop the wedding gifts off at the bride and groom’s place.
  • You might be asked to sign the wedding license (technically before or during the wedding). Therefore you may want to practice your signature.


Do your best to communicate with the groom and the family to alleviate any stress you can. Getting on the same page with everyone will help fulfill your best man duties! It’s a big weekend for one of your best friends-help them make it great.

Read this next: How Much To Spend On An Engagement Ring


  1. It sounds like you’ve definitely done this before – great tips! And as a woman, I agree with the paparazzi one – no need to plant anxiety seeds that weren’t there in the first place.

    • Thanks for pointing that out! Don’t you hate it when someone, especially during an extremely important event, won’t stop asking how you’re doing and if you need anything? Not a way to make the day extra memorable!

      Being a best man is fun. To me it’s stress free, all the pressure is on the bride and groom and the mom-in-law that’s freaking out!

  2. Tod,

    I really like the “Things to release” Table.

    One of my favorite things to do is to shout “Release the Kraken!” in an Irish accent, when a group of people I am with are least expecting it.

    I haven’t had the honor of being a best man at a wedding yet, but this is a great list to have handy.

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