A funeral is a solemn event in many cultures with its acceptable etiquette. Here are some ideas on when to arrive for a memorial service and not break some norms on this solemn social event.

Arriving as a guest

If you are one of the guests for a funeral or memorial service, it is best if you come ahead of time. Standard time is 15-30 minutes before the start of the service. When you arrive early, you can talk to people in the funeral, especially to the bereaved. Spend time with the survivors of the deceased, send them your condolences, and let them feel your support and care.

Arriving as a participant

If you are among the participant in the memorial service, such as the person who’ll deliver the eulogy, the pallbearer, or any position in the service, you should be early in the venue. You must come at least 30 minutes before the start of the service to get last-minute instructions and have a bit of preparation. You must be in constant communication with the organizer so that the service will flow smoothly. It is your way of paying respect to the deceased and support for the bereaved.

What to do if you arrived late?

Funerals are solemn events. It is the final moment for the bereaved to say goodbye to their deceased loved ones. So, if you happen to arrive late, don’t just barge in. Observe first the ceremony, see what part of the service it is, and ease yourself slowly into the venue. The best time to do this is when there’s a gap in the program, like when changing speakers.

If you need to leave the service early

If you need to leave early, it is best if you wait for a gap in the program and approach the family members of the deceased. Tell them that you need to go and offer your sincerest apology and condolences. A heartfelt gesture of respect is enough for a bereaved person to feel your love and care.