How Long Is A Jewish Wedding: Traditions And More

The answer to how long is a Jewish wedding is about 45 minutes, depending on what is included in the Jewish wedding ceremony. We will also familiarize you with the order of traditions in a Jewish wedding and what one can expect if they attend one. 

Furthermore, you must know what to wear to a Jewish wedding when you’re invited as a guest. Therefore, we recommend giving the wedding guest attire etiquette a quick read to prepare for the Jewish wedding. 

how long is a jewish wedding


How Long Does A Jewish Wedding Last?

The average length of a Jewish wedding ceremony is between 35 to 45 minutes. This refers to a traditional Israeli wedding ceremony as the duration depends on the readings, rituals, and other customs included in the wedding. 


How long is an Orthodox Jewish wedding?

An Orthodox Jewish wedding can last anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour. This is because there are many elements done during the ceremony. 


How long is a typical Jewish wedding?

To help you understand the importance of timing at a Jewish wedding, consider this sample timeline with all the Jewish wedding traditions:

  1. The ceremony will start at 4 pm with the kabbalat panim which lasts for one hour to an hour and a half; guests greet and eat and drink with the bride, while the groom and his male family and friends are also mingling in a separate room, but he’ll sign the documents and marriage contract as well
  2. Afterward, at least five minutes are dedicated to the veiling of the bride by the groom, also known as the bedeken
  3. What follows is the wedding ceremony as the guests move from one room to the next; this can last for 15 minutes to an hour, depending on the locations of the ceremony and reception
  4. The Jewish wedding ceremony will last for 45 minutes; then the guests will stay in the cocktail area for an hour
  5. After the Jewish wedding ceremony, the couple will spend about 15 minutes together in a yichud
  6. The reception will then begin as the newlyweds enter the ballroom
  7. The horah dance of the party will last for about 15 minutes, and the reception meals, speeches, and dancing will start
  8. Each course at a Jewish wedding reception is about 20 minutes, and 30 minutes for the main course
  9. During these meals, speeches and dancing also occur
  10. Finally, the cake is cut, for a total of about 4 hours in the wedding reception


What Time Of Day Is A Jewish Wedding?

A typical Jewish wedding will have the ceremony start at 4 pm because the wedding is expected to last for 6 hours. Therefore, beginning the ceremony at 4 pm will ensure that the wedding guests can leave by 11 pm. 

It’s also worth noting that Jewish weddings are most popularly held on Saturdays. The wedding begins with a Havdalah service, which marks the end of the Sabbath that Jews observe on Saturday nights. 

However, it’s also possible to attend a Jewish wedding on a Sunday afternoon or any day of the week. Saturday is only the most commonly selected day for Jewish weddings to give guests time to rest from the festivities before starting the weekday. 


What time does a Jewish wedding start?

Traditional Jewish weddings are expected not to happen during sefirat ha-Omer and bein ha-Metzarim as they commemorate tragic events in Jewish history. Since most rabbis are unlikely to marry a couple on Shabbat, Jewish weddings usually start before sundown on a Friday or Saturday night after sunset.

Jewish weddings can also happen on a Sunday, so the couple can prevent the reception from lasting until Monday morning since Jewish weddings can last about 6 hours. That being said, most Jewish weddings happen on Sundays to avoid the reception lasting until the following morning. 

The couple can then select the customs and traditions they want to have at their wedding to manage the Jewish wedding duration. 


What Can I Expect At A Jewish Wedding?

There are different Jewish wedding traditions, but nowadays, it’s common to reinvent some of them to blend customs with the modern outlook of marriage. 



Badekin is a veiling custom observed in Jewish wedding ceremonies. The groom will veil the bride before the wedding, symbolizing that he values her more than just her external beauty. 



The bride will accept something valuable from the groom in the act of kinyan. Back in the day, the groom gives coins, then it was replaced by rings. 

Speaking of ring exchange, you can read when do you say I do in a wedding if you’re curious.



The Jewish marriage contract or ketubah interestingly still retains its original text. However, modern versions are more egalitarian than focusing on the husband’s obligations to his wife. 



The chuppah is where the bride and groom will stand underneath during the Jewish wedding ceremony. It symbolizes the marriage chamber, but the couple can also marry underneath a tallit in some communities. 



And that’s it! We found out how long is a Jewish wedding, which is around 45 minutes for the ceremony, but the wedding itself can last for 6 hours.

We hope you learned a lot about the Jewish wedding traditions; let us know below if you want to know about other wedding durations. 

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