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Xarocas

Bilingual Weddings... any tips?

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Hi there,

 

I'm getting married in October 2014 in Portugal. I am Portuguese and my fiance is English and we both live in the UK, however we decided to have the wedding in Portugal.

 

Half of our guests will be English and won't speak a word of Portuguese and the other half will be Portuguese (maybe 50% of those are average English speakers). My fiancee also speaks Portuguese (not fluently but above average)

 

Language is one of the things that is worrying me the most as I really want everyone to understand what is going on at all times. Specially my parents as they don't speak much English at all...

 

So... mains concerns:

 

Ceremony: because this part of the wedding can be planned in advance, we were thinking of having programs that have the information in English when the person speaking is Portuguese and vice-versa... alternatively we can just have two versions of the program... one on each language? What do you think it's easier?

 

Speeches: this is my main concern.

 

My dad will make a speech in Portuguese and he really is not the kind of guy to write it all down before hand... so not sure how this can work....

 

The best man: there will be three best man, two English, one Portuguese... do you think they can try and do something together? they don't really know each other...

 

Ahhh so many questions! :) Any ideas, please please let me know! XX

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Originally Posted by Xarocas View Post

 

Hi there,

 

I'm getting married in October 2014 in Portugal. I am Portuguese and my fiance is English and we both live in the UK, however we decided to have the wedding in Portugal.

 

Half of our guests will be English and won't speak a word of Portuguese and the other half will be Portuguese (maybe 50% of those are average English speakers). My fiancee also speaks Portuguese (not fluently but above average)

 

Language is one of the things that is worrying me the most as I really want everyone to understand what is going on at all times. Specially my parents as they don't speak much English at all...

 

So... mains concerns:

 

Ceremony: because this part of the wedding can be planned in advance, we were thinking of having programs that have the information in English when the person speaking is Portuguese and vice-versa... alternatively we can just have two versions of the program... one on each language? What do you think it's easier?

 

Speeches: this is my main concern.

 

My dad will make a speech in Portuguese and he really is not the kind of guy to write it all down before hand... so not sure how this can work....

 

The best man: there will be three best man, two English, one Portuguese... do you think they can try and do something together? they don't really know each other...

 

Ahhh so many questions! :) Any ideas, please please let me know! XX

 

You have a difficult one here!  I think the main language should be what most of the guests speak the most.  Then the translations can be in the program.  When it comes to speeches, let your dad do it in Portuguese, maybe another family member can translate?  I think it would be nice if the three best man do something together.  Good luck!

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Oh I forgot to mention that most of my family speak Spanish, and my Fiance's family speaks mostly English and Tagalog (he's Filipino).  So we will be having the ceremony in English and the music will be a mix of English and Spanish.  

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Thanks Myyooths for the advice, I like the idea of getting my dad to do his speech in Portuguese! will have to think about it more! :) what language are you doing your wedding in?

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Originally Posted by Xarocas View Post

 

Thanks Myyooths for the advice, I like the idea of getting my dad to do his speech in Portuguese! will have to think about it more! :) what language are you doing your wedding in?

 

My wedding is going to be in English.  Although my mom doesn't understand much but she can handle it, she knows just enough to understand.  :-)

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Hi,

 

I just read your post. And I understand your situation I`m Portuguese too, by now you probably have things resolved since this post is from a while back. But just in case maybe this will help.Have you thought about a wedding planner in Portugal to ease the stress.

A friend of mine had her wedding here in Portugal. French English and Portuguese it turned out great even with 3 languages on the invites they looked great and she had a translator at the ceremony during the vows.  If your still with any dilemma with having a wedding here let me know maybe I can help you out from here :)

 

best of luck

Tania

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I think having a pre-written translation or an onsite translator for your ceremony is a great idea. As for the reception speeches- I wouldn't worry. I think it's beautiful to watch a father speak to his daughter in his native language- and even if some of your guests don't understand his words, his sentiment will be obvious. Perhaps when you address him after his toast, you can synopsize what he said for your English speaking guests and thank him in both English and Portuguese? Maybe break up the speeches so that there is a mixture of English/Portuguese throughout the program? So long as the entire reception isnt in one language that alienates other guests I think it's totally fine It speaks to you as a couple, and the multicultural union! I love it!!

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@@Xarocas - My fiance is Mexican and his whole family is in Mexico, part of the reason why we are marrying there. I had the same questions...

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I have this issue too - my in-laws are from Argentina and don't speak much English, and my family doesn't speak much Spanish!  We chose to get married in Mexico as it is the perfect half-way point geographically and language-wise both our families can use their own at the resorts!  It is the first time our families are meeting and I don't want anyone to feel left out or minsunderstood.   My fiancee and his siblings are completely bilingual and will be doing a lot of translating during the week lol!  I'm not that worried about the ceremony, as it's pretty universally understood what words are being exchanged, but hopefully there won't be any akwardness at speech time. My fiancee and I are both planning on saying a few words at the reception in both languages just to express our love and thanks for everyone being there. 

I

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