How to Write a Great Wedding Speech
A person’s wedding day is one of the biggest moments of their life, and when it comes to choosing someone to give a speech, they’re going to pick someone who means a lot to them. It may be the best man or maid of honor, or it may be another loved one who’s in attendance. Either way, if you’re the chosen one, you have a big task ahead of you. But writing a wedding speech doesn’t have to be hard when you follow these tips:
Most people are honored when the future bride and groom ask them to give a speech at the wedding, but they may not know where to start. If you’re not sure what you want to stay, brainstorming can help. Write down a list of personality traits, funny stories, touching memories and anything else you can think of that shines a positive light on the couple. Consider asking others who know them well for ideas to add to your list. Once you’ve completed your list, you’ll have several options on what to include.
Introduce Yourself and Thank the Couple.
Even once you have your brainstormed list together, it be difficult to know how to open the speech. The safest thing to do is to introduce yourself and explain how you know the bride and/or groom. During this introduction, you can also thank the couple for inviting you and the other guests to share in this big moment. If their parents or other relatives helped throw the wedding, it’s also appropriate to thank them for having you.
Share a Personal Story.
Now, it’s time to add a personal touch. This is where your list of brainstormed ideas can come come into play. A funny or touching story about how the bride and groom met is always a good idea. If you’re the bride’s sister — and you often played wedding during your childhood — you can touch on that. If you’re the groom’s roommate — and you watched him frantically clean up your apartment before his future bride came over for the first time — you can share that. Whatever you choose, make sure it’s something that will make the audience laugh, cry or relate to the sentiment.
Consider Using a Relevant Quote.
Something else you may consider adding to your speech is a famous quote about love and marriage from a historic figure, a piece of literature, from the bride and groom’s religious faith or anything else that may seem relevant. Just be careful that it fits in with the the speech and doesn’t seem awkward. For example, if your entire speech is packed with jokes or has a lighthearted tone, it may feel odd to throw a poignant quote about love from the Bible or Shakespeare into the mix.
Give Some Words of Encouragement.
Once you’ve shared some personal stories about the bride and groom, it’s time to start wrapping it up. You can transition into an ending by offering some words of encouragement to the happy couple. Tell them you knew from the moment they met that they were perfect for each other, or tell them what you wish for their future. If you’re single, tell them you hope to one day find a love like they share, and if you’re married, consider some fun advice for their own married years.
Avoid Making a Faux Pas.
Now that you have the bulk of the speech written, look it over to make sure you haven’t included something you shouldn’t. Avoid anything negative about the bride, groom or their loved ones, including insults. Don’t bring up old boyfriends and girlfriends or ex spouses. Do not be crude, use curse words or use explicit sexual material. Remember, their parents, grandparents and coworkers may be in the audience. Finally, avoid copying a speech from the Internet or a book, and don’t be too generic.
End With a Toast to the Couple.
Now that you’ve written your speech and gone over it to make sure the material is appropriate, end it with a toast. Ask the audience to raise their glasses to the bride and groom. Make it short and sweet.
Practice in Front of Others
Finally, practice the speech in front of other people before the big day. This not only gives you practice delivering the speech in front of an audience, it allows you to get some feedback from others. Perhaps the speech is too long or too silly. Maybe you’re not speaking loud or enough or looking at the audience enough. Ask your practice audience for any constructive feedback so you’re ready to do it right on day of the wedding.
- Terms of Service
- © 2023 Ask Media Group, LLC
89 years of expert advice and inspiration, for every couple.
- Engagement Rings
- Wedding Bands
- Celebrity Weddings & News
- Wedding Planning
- Destination Wedding
- Invitations & Stationery
- Wedding Décor
- Flowers & Bouquets
- Food & Drink
- Wedding Cakes
- Wedding Dresses
- Bridesmaid Dresses
- Makeup & Hair
- Groom Style
- Wedding Party Attire
- Wedding Guest Attire
- Bridal Fashion Week
- Skincare & Wellness
- Engagement Party
- Bridal Shower
- Bachelorette Party
- Rehearsal Dinner
- Registry Tips
- Anniversary Gifts
- Wedding Favors
- Friends & Family
- Marriage Proposal Ideas
- Married Life
- Love & Dating
- The Brides Team
- Editorial Guidelines
- Editorial Policy
By clicking “Accept All Cookies”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts.
- Wedding Ideas & Advice
- Wedding Etiquette and Advice
- Who Gives a Speech at a Wedding Reception? How to Write a Wedding Toast Tips for the Father of the Bride Speech How to Write a Best Man Toast Advice for the Maid of Honor Speech What to Know About a Newlywed Toast Public Speaking Experts' Wedding Speech Tips 60 Quotes to Use for Your Wedding Toast
How to Write the Perfect Best Man Speech
Two experts share the best tips for writing a winning toast.
Photo by Sydney Noelle Photography
In This Article
First of all, congratulations on being asked to be the best man. You, of course, have many important responsibilities —like groomsmen shepherding and bachelor party planning , among others—but there's only one task that will secure your proud ascension into the ranks of becoming the MVP: Giving a killer toast.
The best man's speech traditionally follows the groom's speech and is a chance for you to say some sweet words about your relationship with the couple and your best friend. But, if the thought of public speaking has your kneecaps sweating, we found you two coaches with years of experience to help ease your nerves.
Ahead, with the help of President Barack Obama's former speechwriter David Litt, and Pete Honsberger, author of Wedding Toasts 101: The Guide to the Perfect Wedding Speech , here are the best tips for writing a perfect man speech, in order to pull off the most amazing toast ever.
The Best (and Worst) Best Man Speech Ever
Meet the Expert
- David Litt was the speechwriter for President Barack Obama from 2011 to 2016 and is the author of the New York Times best-selling book Thanks, Obama.
- Pete Honsberger has been a serial groomsman, speaker, and wedding toast advisor for most of his adult life. When it comes to wedding toasts, he's seen just about everything—you can read about it in his book, Wedding Toasts 101: The Guide to the Perfect Wedding Speech .
Best Man Speech Template
Getting all your thoughts and feelings down on paper can be overwhelming, especially if you're not used to sharing those sentiments with the guys. And for those who are unsure of what to write for the big day, here is a guideline to help you find your flow.
Find a Theme
A theme is a unifying idea that ties the whole speech together. Think of it as the takeaway of your speech, or the one thing you want guests to remember. The best way to identify your theme is by making a list of your favorite stories. "You’re not going to just write a speech from scratch. Start by brainstorming stories. Most importantly, what you’re looking for is the theme that comes out of those anecdotes," says Litt.
Build a Framework
The best way to organize your thoughts is to create a blueprint of the key points you want to hit first, sort of like a toast skeleton. After you've established the roadmap, fill it in with pertinent details and memories while still ensuring you're staying on point. "Think about it in terms of ideas," says Litt. "You can get in one or two short anecdotes, maybe three, and one big idea. If those are good, you don’t need more."
Instead of thinking of yourself as the speaker, imagine that you're actually standing in the audience. Think about what the audience would like to hear, rather than what you want to do.
Focus on the Newlyweds
Most best men will include a story or two about their friendship with the groom, but don't center the whole speech on it. "Remember the relationship that you’re celebrating is the one between the two people getting married. You’re giving the speech because you can shine some unique light on that relationship," says Litt. "If the relationship that you’re really giving the speech about is the one between you and the groom, things [will get] awkward."
Share Your Feelings
Deliver something more meaningful than one joke after another. "Generally speaking, men think of the best man speech as a funny speech to give because we’re very uncomfortable sharing how we actually feel. But, what makes a good best man speech is the part where somebody shares how they feel. Humor is just the icing on the cake," says Litt. The newlyweds chose you to speak because you have something notable to add to their big day. Embrace your personal insight into their bond and don't try to dilute it by just being funny.
Best Man Speech Tips
Ahead, find our best tips for making sure your speech is as polished as possible.
Consider Your Audience
You can't nail a speech if you have no idea who to tailor the content to. "Feel free to ask beforehand. When I was writing speeches for the president, we had a point of contact where the speech was happening to say who exactly is in the audience. You can do a smaller-scale version of that. Your point of contact is probably your friend getting married . But, the nice thing about giving the best man speech is that, ideally, it’s both specific to you and universal to the couple," says Litt.
"I would say almost never start with talking about how nervous you are. I’d also say just relax. That’s a hard thing to tell someone to do. But remember, you’re not putting on a show," says Litt. "You're simply talking about your best friend and the love of their life, two people that you've probably spent a lot of time with. In the end, it should just flow and come out easily." Litt also suggests, "imagine you’re just telling a story to a group of friends because, really, you are."
Stay True to Yourself
Stick with who you are and how you would normally act around your friends; you don't need to adopt a character just because you're giving a speech. For example, if you aren't normally the comedian in the group, don't try to tell a bunch of jokes. If you're not usually a super-sentimental person, don't force it. There's nothing wrong with keeping your speech more lighthearted . The couple already knows (and loves) your personality, so the more genuine you are, the better your speech will be received by both the newlyweds and their guests.
Don't Rely Solely On Humor
While a few jokes sprinkled in can be a great tool for loosening up the crowd, don't make these the meat of your toast—especially if comedy doesn't come naturally to you. "Let me put it this way. There’s such a thing as too many bad jokes, and that number is about one. The more you treat it as an open-mic night, the less happy everyone involved is going to be. You don’t need to go in thinking, 'How do I get invited back next week?'" explains Litt.
Keep Things Positive
Even if you think it's well-meaning, don't turn the toast into a roast or make jokes at the couple's expense. "I’ve seen best man speeches where someone thinks, 'Oh, my job is to roast the groom .' Unless the couple specifically told you that’s your job, that’s not your job. The way to think about jokes is that you don’t want people to be laughing at the groom or at the couple. You want people to be laughing because they suddenly know the groom better than they did before." says Litt.
Don't Upstage the Newlyweds
Litt's previous boss (former President Obama) really enjoyed telling other people's stories at speaking engagements, and this ultimately strengthened his messages. "His speeches are not really about him. They’re about other people," says Litt. Channel Obama by keeping your speech focused on the couple. "You’re not performing. You’re there because you know someone and care about them, and you’re sharing that with a bunch of other people. Even a great best man speech is not supposed to steal the show. If somebody says, 'That speech was nice but almost forgettable because we were so focused on the bride and groom,' that’s a win. You don’t need to be the star," advises Litt.
Keep Things Appropriate
"My general rule for wedding speeches is: If you have to ask yourself, 'Is this appropriate?' it’s not. And if you’re the kind of person who doesn’t know, ask a friend. If they give you that slightly horrified look, listen to that look," explains Litt. Keep in mind that your audience will include guests of various generations and cultures, like your friend's grandparents, boss, and colleagues. Refrain from mentioning anything that you wouldn't want your grandma or boss to know.
Get a Second Opinion
Remember, you'll be delivering this toast in front of an audience (as if you could forget, right?). So it doesn't hurt to get some feedback on what you're planning on saying. "If you’re the kind of person who has a track record of going a little too far with your surprises, you should be self-aware enough to run this by a third party—maybe another close friend or a friend of the bride ," says Litt.
The last thing you want to do is stand up and give a speech that you've never said out loud. "The best thing to do is practice with a friend. Anybody giving a big speech rehearses beforehand. If you’ve already gotten good feedback from field-testing your remarks with a smaller group, then you’re going to come out on the wedding day comfortably knowing you have a good speech. It's that uncertainty that can be scary when you’re up there speaking," says Litt.
Keep It Short
Let's be realistic: Super-long wedding toasts annoy guests. "I’ve never been to a wedding where anyone said, 'That was a great wedding, but the best man speech was just too short and that ruined it.' I would say five minutes is the absolute maximum. Three minutes is fine. There’s no question that if you’re reading this, you’ve sat through a speech that was too long. But when you start writing a speech, you almost never think, 'Is this going to be too long?'" explains Litt.
Limit Your Drinks
Don't embarrass yourself by slurring through your toast. "Being one drink in works for some people, but being more than one drink in is never a good idea. At that moment when you’re like, 'You know what I need? Another couple of shots.' That is never what you need," advises Litt.
Best Man Speech Openers
Now that you understand the fundamentals of creating a great toast, your next step is to sit down and start writing. If you need a little help getting your speech going, though, our experts share a few ideas to kick-start the process.
Introduce Yourself With a Twist
Want to tell the crowd exactly why you're the best man? Honsberger says to get straight to the point and tell them how you know the groom . Most importantly, add some flavor to the first few lines. Spice it up a bit, as anyone can do the standard, “For those of you who don’t know me….” Simply put, ask yourself what a twist would look like in your own introduction.
“Good evening, if you’re in this room and don’t know me by now, then you’re probably at the wrong wedding. I am, of course, [your name], and I’ve been best friends with [groom] for 25 years…”
“Hello and welcome to tonight’s reception. [name of groom], YOU truly are MY biggest fan. Wait, that didn’t come out right…As I was saying…”
Crack a Joke, Even a Corny One
Remember the audience when determining whether your joke should be said, but ultimately, try and see if you can get the crowd to laugh in the first 30 seconds. To achieve this, Honsberger says to simply reach into your own bag of jokes or look one up online. "I’d encourage you to first spend a little time reflecting on your own comedic ability. If you’re coming up empty, then consult outside resources," he notes.
"Hello, I’m the best man [your name]. This entire day has been beautiful so far. In fact, I’m getting emotional. The wedding cake has me in TIERS. (looking at a three-tiered cake).”
"You’re probably wondering why I asked you all here tonight…well, I can promise it’s not for my 'Magic Mike' performance. You’ll have to stick around to the last song for that."
Be Hilarious With a Straight Face
While still technically a joke, this is you working hard to sound serious while saying something absurd. And if you get this right, you’ll hear a little giggle immediately, followed by laughter from the rest of the crowd once they figure out what you said was a joke.
“Good evening, I am [your name], the best man and [relationship to groom] of [name of groom]. Tonight we’re in a room full of great men –doctors, lawyers, military veterans, and successful businesspeople –yet I am the 'best.' His words, not mine.”
"As Abraham Lincoln once said, [say something outrageous than Lincoln obviously never said—an inspirational quote, movie line, piece of advice, etc.] … and that’s what brings us all together tonight to celebrate [couple's name].”
Introduce a Recurring Theme
Choosing an overall toast theme can help you start strong. If you decide that your relationship with the groom can be summed up by sports, college, vacations, a mutual love of running, or whatever fits you, that can be your theme. And if that’s the case, your opener is simply the first, or the best, story you have related to that specific topic.
“Hello and welcome, my name’s [your name], and I’m here to talk about my amazing friends Mike and Liz. They are truly a story of opposites attracting.
For example, Liz’s favorite food is french fries, and Mike is allergic to potatoes. Mike has an obsession with ice cream, and Liz is lactose intolerant (pause for laughter).
Thankfully, things have a way of working out, and we are gathered tonight to celebrate the most important thing they have in common…incredibly good looks. I mean, LOVE.”
Just like that, you’ve captured the audience, let them into the world of the married couple, and got them excited for the rest of your toast.
Ask a Question to Answer Throughout
If you’re questioning your toast opener, try leaning into that approach. Instead of looking for the answer, embrace the question. Think about what you would want to know about the groom if you were a distant relative or family friend sitting in the audience, says Honsberger. What would be an interesting question to explore about the couple? Use that.
“Good evening. My name is [your name] and I’ve known [groom] for more than [#] years. As I was preparing this toast, one question consistently rang in my mind: How do I summarize a friendship that has lasted since we [when you met]? Believe it or not, [groom] was [name a quirk or characteristic about him] back then, too.”
“But really, how can I possibly speak to all of our experiences in just a few minutes without turning it into one big inside joke? Do I talk about …?”
Then, spend the rest of the speech answering that question, and you’ll never lack information to share.
Really want to capture the intrigue of everyone in the room? Start rhyming your sentences. Honsberger says he tried this in his first-ever wedding toast, and the result was an audience hanging on every sentence, wondering what the next line would be.
“Good evening ladies and gentlemen, I am Dan's younger brother, Pete. Many of you, I already know. Some, I have yet to meet.
Dan and Kate, thank you so much for this amazing chance, to speak on your special day … by the way, I call first dance. (crowd boos in jest) Sorry, but I called it!
I’ve looked up to Dan ever since I’ve had sight. He was always bigger than me, and he was always right.
Being the oldest of four boys couldn’t have been an easy thing. But in a house full of hyenas, Dan was the Lion King."
Read a Definition from the Dictionary
Here’s a chance to leverage one of the most straightforward and honest resources in existence: the dictionary. All you need to do is find one word that defines the couple’s relationship , says Honsberger. This can be serious and sentimental or funny—your choice. Just make sure it's relevant to the couple.
“Google’s second definition of the word ‘love’ says, ‘A great interest and pleasure in something or someone.’ I think this is beautiful and an understatement when I think of [bride] and [groom]’s marriage. Although I was a little concerned when, under the definition, the word “love” was used in a sentence as ‘His love for football.’ Hmm, strange…”
“Who’s ready to dance tonight? Wikipedia defines the word ‘dance’ as ‘a performing art form consisting of purposefully selected sequences of human movement,’ and those words have honestly never come to mind when I think of [groom] dancing. I might be kidding, but there’s only one way to find out!”
Tell a Story of How You Met
If the groom is a friend, chances are you have a good story of the first time you met or early in your friendship. If it’s your brother or family member, simply use one of your first memories together, whether playing, adventuring, or getting into trouble.
“The year was 1993, the class was kindergarten. I was building a beautiful tower of blocks when out of nowhere, they were knocked to the ground by a classmate without mercy or even an apology. That classmate was Matt, and we’ve been best friends ever since. And Matt, I’m sorry for throwing the blocks at your head after that.”
Begin With a Quote
Simple and overused? Maybe. Effective? Absolutely. If you want to make the groom smile immediately during your toast, use a quote that you both recognize. If there’s one that his partner appreciates, too, even better.
The most important reminder when using a quote is to ensure the audience feels like they’re part of it, too. Unless the quote is universally known, briefly mention its origin right after saying it. Let them into the joke and they’ll be with you for the rest of the toast.
“Good evening everyone, my name is [your name], and I’m the best man tonight. When coach [name] used to tell you to ‘Be an Athlete,’ this is what he meant. When anyone on our team missed a tackle, it was ‘be an athlete,’ when our jerseys weren’t tucked in, same saying. We’ve adopted that as a cure for any issues in life. When [groom] really wanted to introduce himself to [bride], the solution was simple. ‘Be an athlete.’ And he was. So if you see [groom] miss a step on the dance floor later, be sure to remind him to ‘Be an athlete.’"
Read Something in a Different Language
Looking for a way to involve international members of the family in your toast? Look no further than practicing a phrase and reciting it in their native language to begin your toast. If that doesn’t apply in your situation, yet you still want to shake things up and be unique, you can translate a wedding-related sentence into another language. It will be intriguing, and you’ll sound smart!
“Hello and welcome to everyone in both families on such a beautiful day. Me llamo Pedro y necesito que te diviertas porque esta boda es muy cara (wait for laughter from Spanish speakers). If you don’t speak Spanish, I said that I need everyone to have fun because this wedding is really expensive!”
The Bottom Line
At the end of the day, this speech is about the couple getting married, why you love them so much, how happy you are for them, and why you're honored to have this role in the wedding party. Keep things light, positive, and succinct—and also remember that the celebration is all about love, and no one is here to make you feel nervous. Make time to practice the speech, take a few deep breaths before you begin to speak, and focus your attention on the couple. Before you know it, you'll have given a speech for the books!
The best man traditionally speaks at the wedding reception following the maid of honor, though some couples may schedule the speeches during the rehearsal dinner instead.
The best man gives one speech either at the wedding reception or, less commonly, the rehearsal dinner.
The best man's speech serves as a special lens for the audience to better understand the groom, and the newlyweds, through his significant position in their lives. The focus should be to highlight the relationship of the newlyweds rather than the relationship between the best man and groom.
A Guide to Wedding Reception Toasts
Who Gives a Speech at a Wedding Reception?
How to Write a Wedding Toast
Tips for the Father of the Bride Speech
How to Write a Best Man Toast
Advice for the Maid of Honor Speech
What to Know About a Newlywed Toast
Public Speaking Experts' Wedding Speech Tips
60 Quotes to Use for Your Wedding Toast
Everything to Know About Your Groom Speech: Tips, Advice, and Examples
How to Write a Wedding Toast: Examples, Tips, and Advice
How to Write a Sister-of-the-Groom Speech
36 Funny Wedding Toasts and Speeches That'll Get the Whole Room Laughing
How to Write a Father of the Bride Speech
How to Write a Maid of Honor Speech
When Should Speeches Take Place During the Wedding Reception?
Everything You Need to Know About Wedding Champagne Toasts
6 Simple Tips for Delivering an Amazing Best Man Speech
Mother-of-the-Bride Speech Examples and Writing Tips
The Most Memorable TV and Movie Best Man Wedding Speeches of All Time
Our Favorite Unique Maid of Honor Speech Ideas
The Complete Guide to Father-of-the-Bride Duties
The Sweetest Engagement Congratulations Quotes to Send to the Happy Couple
80 Bachelor and Bachelorette Party Instagram Caption Ideas
Public Speaking Experts Share Their Top Tips for Giving an Amazing Wedding Speech
Rock Your Best Man Speech Using Our Expert-Approved Advice
- Chapelle writes articles for The Knot Worldwide. She covers all things wedding-related and has a personal interest in covering celebrity engagements and fashion.
- Before joining The Knot Worldwide, Chapelle was an editorial intern for Subvrt Magazine.
- Chapelle has a degree in English writing from Loyola University New Orleans.
Pat yourself on the back—you're the best man. It's a good feeling when one of your loved ones asks you to be their right hand for the wedding. Beyond the fun best man duties , like planning an epic bach party , you'll have to give a rousing best man speech. We believe it's arguably the most meaningful duty, but don't let that get you nervous. Whether you're a public speaking pro or have only delivered speeches while on the eighth-grade debate team, boost your chances of making your best man speech a hit by using our helpful tips, ideas and examples for inspiration.
In this article:
Printable Template | How to Write | Examples | Tips | FAQs
Printable Best Man Speech Template
Delivering a best man wedding speech doesn't have to feel like a chore. Use the template below as a checklist while you're writing your best man speech.
How to Write a Best Man Speech Outline
We're guessing the thought of crafting a flawless best man speech from scratch feels pretty overwhelming right about now. Start by drafting a bare-bones outline (trust us, drawing up a rough outline is way more palatable than writing a fully fleshed-out speech). You don't need to include every element in your wedding speech . Instead, customize it to fit the couple, the event and your relationship with the groom.
1. Have a killer opening line.
Successful best man speeches always start with a good opener. Introduce yourself and explain your connection to the happy couple. Have fun with this part by sharing a quick joke or quoting a poem so your speech doesn't start off stale. For example, "Hello everyone! For those of you who don't know me, thank you so much for coming to my wedding. [pause for laughter] Sorry about that...I'm a little nervous."
2. Thank the other speakers.
Once you address the audience, give props to the previous speaker to help lead into your speech. If you know your speech has a sillier sentiment, now's your chance to warn your audience in the change of direction. Here's an example: "Let's give it up to the amazing speech given by the wonderful maid of honor . If you enjoyed how thoughtful and sweet her speech was, you better get the tissues ready for this one!"
Next, express your gratitude to the couple's parents. Thank the couples' parents for not only raising incredible adults and, if they helped pay for the wedding, for hosting such a great party. Here's an example: "I'd like to begin by expressing my deepest gratitude to the couples' parents for raising such amazing people, who I'm fortunate to call my best friends. I would also like to thank their parents for hosting such an awesome celebration for all of us to enjoy this evening."
3. Say a few words about your friend's new spouse.
Another writing a best man speech tip is always to give a special shoutout to the new spouse so they feel welcomed and included. Yes, we know you most likely have a closer relationship with the groom, but don't let that stop you from showering them with kind words––it's their big day too. Talk about the qualities you like about them and why you love them in the groom's life. Try this, "I'm so happy [Spouse's Name] fell in love with [Groom's Name]. Firsthand I've seen the grace, intelligence and confidence [Spouse's Name] has, which explains why [Groom's Name] knew he wanted to marry [Spouse's Name] after their first date."
4. Share personal stories.
What's going to make your best man speech stand out are personal stories. We suggest adding one or two anecdotes, like your favorite memories with the groom (and their partner, if you want). Avoid choosing a story that rambles on and has no sentimental or funny ending—keep it lighthearted and short. Here's a silly example, "I remember when we first met in first grade. [Groom's Name] had just glued his hand to his face but still used his free one to shake my hand and ask if I wanted to be his friend."
5. Talk about the couple's relationship.
This is the time to speak about why the groom and their new spouse are a great couple. Share how they first met and how their relationship has grown so other guests can get a better insight into the newlyweds. If you helped the love birds meet, say something like this in your best man speech: "I know I said earlier I'm the best man, but I lied. I'm actually Cupid because I'm the one who introduced these two eight years ago."
6. Propose a toast.
Finally, close out your best man speech with a heartfelt toast. Ask everyone to raise a glass and provide well wishes to the newly married couple. Steal this wedding toast : "Everyone, please join me in raising a glass to such a wonderful couple. I wish you a lifetime of peace, love and happiness. Love you guys!"
Find your kind of venue
Best man speech examples.
Now that you know how to write the outline, let us provide you with some inspiration. Here are four best man speech ideas for every type of delivery.
Short Best Man Speech Example
Short best man speeches can make the grade just as much as long ones. Try this short but sweet example.
As the poet, Dante once said, 'A great flame follows a little spark.' When [Groom's Name] met [Spouse's Name], there was a little spark. I know because I talked to him the next day.
From the way he talked about [Spouse's Name], this stranger he chatted up at a Halloween party, I could tell this spark was something special.
You two are fantastic together. May the flame burn long, and may sparks continue to fly. Cheers to the newlyweds!
Funny Best Man Speech Example
Funny best man speeches are our favorite. You get to show off your comedic skills while giving loving well-wishes to the happy couple.
Hello! For those who don't know me, I'm [Your Name], the best man. I've known [Groom's Name] since middle school, which means that it was before we learned mullets weren't a good look for either of us.
[Groom's Name] and [Spouse's Name] told me there are some topics I should avoid in this speech so…[Look through cue cards, then shake head and dramatically drop them all to the floor but one.]
[Reading from the remaining cue card] [Groom's Name] is really the best friend I've ever had. He's done so many wonderful things it would be difficult to name them all. Hey, [a Groomsman's Name], I can't read your handwriting here!
But seriously, it's all true. This guy is a great friend, the best I've got, and I'm very proud to stand by his side today.
[Spouse's Name], I was hoping to be the best-looking person in the room today but obviously, I failed miserably. You look beautiful and radiant. I'm beyond happy for the two of you.
May you always find joy in the little things, like your Xbox and 'Star Wars.' Oh wait, that's my personal goal. You should actually find joy in each other, and do everything you can to have a lifetime of happiness together. Let's toast the newlyweds!
Best Man Speech for Brother Example
Need best man speech examples for your brother? Use our speech below as a guide to delivering a sweet message to your older or younger brother.
On my fourth birthday, my parents got me a brother…I wanted a puppy.
But seriously, as a kid [Groom's Name] wanted to do everything I did. He used to follow me around. He used to sneak into my room and play with my Matchbox cars. Our parents could get him to eat his broccoli by making me eat my broccoli.
It wasn't until after I went to college that he started going down his own path. He started doing volunteer work. He found a job he loves, a pretty killer apartment and, of course, he found [Spouse's Name].
[Spouse's Name], you're the nicest person I've ever met, and my brother is so blessed to have someone like you in his life. Thank you for being there for him.
I'm so happy you two found each other especially because I'm gaining a sister today. Oh, and I want to set the record straight. I'm glad I didn't get a puppy that day. I love you, little bro.
Congratulations to both of you. I wish you lots of laughter, love and joy as a married couple. Cheers to the newlyweds!
Best Man Speech for Best Friend Example
For those who need a best man speech sample for their best friend, we got you covered. Here's how to tell your BFF you're happy for them on their special day.
Good evening, everyone! I'm [Your Name], and I'm extremely honored to call myself [Groom's Name]'s best man. Also, please excuse the puffiness under my eyes, I've been happy crying since before the ceremony.
I first met [Groom's Name] while working at a pizza joint called Domenica's while in college. I hated being a server with all my heart, but whenever [Groom's Name] and I were scheduled together, it made it so much more bearable.
We laughed until we cried, ate hundreds of garlic knots and I can't tell you the amount of times we accidentally got pizza dough stuck to the ceiling during our pizza toss competitions. But even after we both quit and moved on to bigger and better things, we still kept in touch and I'm eternally grateful.
One of those bigger and better things was [Spouse's Name]. [Groom's Name] really discovered the perfect piece to his puzzle. [Spouse's Name] laughs at his bad jokes, listens to his long monologues about Batman vs. Superman and most importantly, loves him no matter what. [Spouse's Name] is a phenomenal and caring person who deserves the world, and I know [Groom's Name] will do everything he can to give it to them.
Thank you both for allowing me to be a part of your beautiful wedding, and I can't wait to see what else is in store for you in the future. Love you guys, and cheers to the handsome couple!
Best Man Speech Tips
Good news! We got how to give a best man speech tips from Dominic Bliss, wedding writer and author of Being the Best Man for Dummies. Study up on these helpful pointers below to minimize pre-speech jitters and ensure a smooth delivery.
The first tip in our guide on how to write a best man speech is to get started in advance. (As in, do not procrastinate.) "Start writing a best man speech at least two months before the wedding," Bliss says. "As the wedding nears, there are lots of events—suit fittings and a coed shower, perhaps—that could distract you from getting your writing done." Brainstorm and write down any stories, jokes or best man speech quotes you want to include. The more time you have to prepare your best man speech, the better. This way, you'll be able to be fully present at upcoming wedding festivities.
Whether the wedding guests are strangers or family, it can feel nerve-racking to deliver your best man speech with all eyes on you. To ease the awkwardness, provide anecdotes and stories about your relationship with the couple. Everyone loves a bit of nostalgia, and the guests get to know you better.
With that said, stay true to how you normally act while making your speech. There's no need for you to change who you are for some made-up public speaking persona. If you feel more comfortable cracking jokes throughout your speech, do it. If you are better at being sentimental and don't mind leaving everyone misty-eyed, take that approach. Remember, the couple chose you to speak at their wedding because they felt you could add something special to their big day. As long as you deliver a heartfelt speech, the newlyweds and guests will love it.
Know what topics to avoid.
There are a few topics to omit from the best man speech. No matter how funny you (and even the groom) might think they are, someone is bound to be offended or put off if you mention:
- Negativity about marriage in general.
- Past relationships.
- Previous marriages/divorces.
- Drinking, drugs, gambling.
- "Adult" humor or any other mention of sex.
After all, your best man speech should celebrate the newlywed couple and their love rather than causing future friction. Keep it PG.
Consider adding jokes.
If you want to deliver a funny best man speech, consider poking some fun at the groom. "Every groom will have some funny characteristic or quirk you can ridicule," Bliss notes. "As long as it's something everyone can appreciate, it's sure to get a laugh. Avoid obscure references or inside jokes. You want older guests and those who don't know him well to see the funny side too." Be strategic about your jokes too. You can make jokes about the groom but leave their new spouse alone.
Write it down.
Even those with a great memory will feel more confident with a written speech or at least a few bullet points to keep them on track. Nerves can mess with your memory, so don't think you're a failure if you have to bring notes with you. (Even CEOs do this at corporate events.) Bliss suggests using small note cards instead of a sheet of paper since they "won't flap around."
And yes we know many groomsmen will want to read off their cell phones out of convenience, but wedding planners recommend against it. The lighting from your phone screen can ruin the wedding photographer's photos and can be distracting to guests. Practice writing down your speech instead—it's quite soothing.
Practice with an audience.
This tip is a must when it comes to writing a best man speech. Even if you think you have this whole thing in the bag, practice delivering your wedding speech aloud at least three times. When you're by yourself, take a video and watch the playback to get a feel for how your speech is going. (Do you say "um" between every sentence? Are your gestures a little robotic?) If your friends can't offer critiques in person, "send [the video] to a close friend who won't be going to the wedding and who can give you honest feedback," Bliss recommends.
Finally: don't mumble. A great best man speech becomes boring if it's monotonous or guests are straining to hear you. Speak confidently and slowly.
Best Man Frequently Asked Questions
If this is your first time giving a best man speech, you might have a lot of questions. Here are answers to the top wedding speech inquiries.
How Long Should a Best Man Speech Be?
In general, the best man speech length should be at least three minutes, but no more than five minutes. This is enough time to say something meaningful before guests get too antsy. Of course, you should adjust your speech length to the event. If you're speaking at a last-minute wedding, it might require a brief speech, while a formal affair could call for a longer toast. But you might also be wondering, "how many words should a best man speech be?" We suggest between 700 to 1000 words.
How to Start a Best Man Speech
Begin your speech by addressing the audience and thanking them for attending the wedding. Here's an example, "Hello, everyone. On behalf of the newlyweds, I want to thank everyone for attending this amazing celebration." You can even butter up the crowd by saying how lovely everyone looks this evening. Then, introduce yourself and how you know the groom or couple. This is a great opportunity to add a funny story or memory you have with them that can lead you into the rest of your speech.
How to End a Best Man Speech
Raise your glass and offer a toast wishing the couple a lifetime of happiness, excellent health and success. Your toast can include one final joke or be a marriage quote from your and the groom's favorite movie. Either way, take this chance to sincerely express the newlyweds well. Remember, concluding the speech is the easiest part.
Does the Best Man Have to Give a Speech?
It's not required, but it's expected that the best man gives a speech—especially if the other honor attendants are giving one. If speaking in public makes your stomach turn, consider showing your appreciation for the couple in a different way. We've seen best men do upbeat choreography, sing the couple's favorite song or even present a wedding video they made.
When Does the Best Man Give His Speech?
Following the traditional wedding speech order , the best man speaks after the maid of honor and is the last speech during the reception. There's no need to use this itinerary since the speech order depends on your reception timeline and wedding party size. The to-be-weds might even ask you to deliver your speech during the rehearsal dinner, which most likely will be in front of a smaller audience (score!). Before the wedding and during, double-check with the couple to ensure you know when to give your best man speech so no one has to hunt you down when it's your turn.
How to Write a Best Man Speech in 9 Simple Steps
Been tasked to write a best man speech and not sure where to start? Follow these easy rules for how to write a best man speech—and how to deliver it like a total pro.
Valorie Darling Photography
Being enlisted as someone's best man is a big deal, and there are plenty of best man duties involved—including figuring out how to write a best man speech. Yes, it’s tradition for the best man to give a wedding speech during the reception, so it’s time to prep for that responsibility. If you’re feeling a little nervous about giving a toast in front of a crowd, that’s totally normal, especially if public speaking isn’t your forte. But with a little forethought, planning, and a lot of practice, you’ll be wowing everyone with your best man speech in no time. Here are nine steps to writing a short best man speech that's sweet and to the point—and how you can ace the delivery.
How to Write a Great Best Man Speech
Follow this best man speech template to easily get started when it's time to write your own wedding toast.
1. Plan out your best man speech ahead of time.
Presuming you’re not reading this the night before the wedding, you should give yourself plenty of time—at least one month—to write your best man speech. The weeks leading up to the wedding day, especially participating as such a crucial part of the wedding party, can become hectic. With all of the events you’ll be encouraged or required to attend (on top of keeping up with your own personal life), you may very well lose sight of time. It’s better to plan ahead so you relieve some of the pressure when it's time to write an awesome best man speech.
2. Start your best man speech by expressing gratitude.
If you’re wondering how to write a best man speech, we recommend beginning the speech by stepping onto the dance floor and saying good evening to the crowd (you can write this as a note at the top of your speech as a reminder in case you get nervous). The opening line of your speech should introduce yourself as the best man and then express gratitude to those you think deserve a special shout out. Thank the couple’s parents for raising such great people, thank your friend for having you here, thank the guests for coming, and maybe throw in a one-liner thanking the bartender for a few laughs. It’s a low-key way to break the ice, ease yourself into the best man speech, and make sure those who deserve thanks feel appreciated.
3. Then, talk about your relationship with the groom.
Beyond introducing your name, a big part of how to write a best man speech is talking about your relationship with the groom. Talk about how you met him, how long you've known each other, and what kind of great friend he is. If you can think of an anecdote or funny story that really sums up the kind of person he is, whether that’s charming, warm-hearted, or thoughtful, use it. A funny best man speech is always memorable, but if you’re going to use an anecdote, linking that story to his partner when possible will make it even more meaningful. For example, maybe he’s incredibly outgoing but forgetful, while his new spouse is more thoughtful and organized. If you start with an anecdote of his forgetfulness and later follow up with a time you saw his partner’s organizational skills help him out big time—and that’s a moment you knew they were the real deal—that’s a perfect icebreaker.
4. Focus on the couple's relationship, and not just your own.
Presuming you’ve known the groom for longer than he’s know his partner, you can definitely start your best man toast by sharing an inside joke and recalling the earlier times in your friendship, but then you should skip ahead to when he met his partner. Think of a story that epitomizes their relationship. If you can talk about the exact moment when you realized his partner was “The One” for him, include that. Maybe your buddy told you one week after meeting his partner that they were going to get married, and you thought he was absolutely bonkers, but here you are. Maybe you’ve known the groom for a long, long time—for example, if you’re his brother or you've been best friends since elementary school. You’ve probably always had an idea of what his perfect partner would look like, but the one sitting in front of you exceeds all expectations. Emphasize that he's a great guy and how happy you are for your pal that he’s found someone so perfect for him.
Front Room Studios
5. Keep your best man speech short and sweet.
In terms of wedding speech order , the best man speech is typically first, followed by the maid of honor's toast and parent speeches or father-of-the-bride-speech . Even though you'll go first, a good best man speech is short and sweet, since you want to avoid people growing restless during the later speeches (guests are ready to eat, drink, and dance at this point of the wedding reception). Aim for a short best man speech between three and five minutes max. Keep in mind that it will feel much shorter to you when you’re actually giving the speech, and you will likely rush through it a little bit in the spotlight. That’s why you must…
7. Practice, practice, practice.
One of the most crucial best man speech tips is that you have to—and we mean have to— practice your speech before the wedding. You should read it to yourself out loud at least three or four times ahead of the actual reception. It might feel awkward at first, but would you rather fumble your words alone in private with the chance to make improvements, or give your speech for the first time while being watched by dozens of people with camera phones? Record yourself giving the speech, then replay it for mistakes and things to change. Not only is practice critical to giving the best performance, but it will give you a confidence boost when the big moment arrives. Consider sending the video to a friend, other groomsmen, or relative to give you honest feedback.
7. Write it down.
You should try to memorize your best man toast as best you can, but you’ll feel less anxious if you have it written down. Practice your speech enough so you won’t need to stare at the piece of paper the entire time, but jot down the main talking points to easily transition from one part to the next. Consider using notecards or a small notepad—remember that there's going to be professional photography and videography of your best man speech. Reading from a haphazardly torn piece of scrap paper or worse, your hand, will look sloppy and indicate that you didn’t prepare for the speech.
8. Don’t drink beforehand.
Keep your alcohol intake to a minimum until after you’re finished delivering the best man speech. It's normal to want to calm your nerves, but anything more than one drink during cocktail hour could backfire—alcohol paired with intense nerves and emotions will only amplify them (and you run the risk of slurring your speech!). The more you drink, the less likely you'll be able to remember what you've planned and form cohesive thoughts in the spotlight. Once your speech is over, you'll have time to celebrate all you want.
9. Finish your best man speech with congratulations and a toast.
This is a foolproof way to end your best man speech. Conclude by congratulating the happy couple on their big day and offer a toast to their lifetime of happiness. The toast can be personal, witty, or a quote. Perhaps there’s a line about love and relationships from one of the groom’s favorite comedians or movies that you can share, or you can simply wish the newlyweds the best and ask your fellow guests to raise their glasses in celebration.
Things to Avoid In a Best Man Speech
In order to write a good speech, you want to keep the focus off yourself and instead on the happy couple and their future. In general, it's best to steer clear of these things:
1. Inappropriate anecdotes.
Your pal's grandmother definitely does not need to hear about that one infamous night in college, no matter how relevant or funny it might seem to your buddies. Leave those drunken tales and embarrassing stories for the bachelor party and keep your best man speech PG.
2. Any talk of exes.
Your friend's wedding is absolutely not the time to bring up ex-girlfriends or previous relationships. No matter a how good a story you think it is, or even if it leads directly to the moment you're all in now, just leave it out completely—trust us.
3. Foul language.
Sensing a theme here? You want to make sure your best man speech is well received by everyone, from the 80-year-old guests to the 8-year-old guests. Remember: A wedding is a family event, so it's best to leave out any profanity or other PG-13 talk.
4. Long-winded stories.
As mentioned previously, you want to keep your best man speech short and sweet. As great as your speech is going to be, the last thing you want is for the wedding guests to tune out halfway through your time in the spotlight. If a story needs more than a few sentences to explain, either pare it down or consider a different approach for writing your best man speech.
Related WeddingWire Articles
- CALL TODAY 0207 993 6524 CALL TODAY (929) 470-4500
the ultimate best man speech guide
10 minutes you’ll remember forever.
The Best Man Speech is one of the highlights of any wedding, but getting it right is essential, because whilst it’s just 10 minutes or so on the day, the memories of this speech will last a lifetime . Most Best Men are weighed down by the expectation to be funny, and have no idea where to start, what it should really contain, how to end it, or how to talk about the bride and groom in a meaningful and non-clichéd way. This page is the definitive guide on how to write your best man speech, from the structure, to the jokes, how to handle two men, props, format and quotes…it’s here. All you need is some time, a creative burst and the rest will take care of itself.
HOW TO WRITE A GREAT best man SPEECH
Here is a short video with my thoughts and ideas on writing a great best man speech. I’ve expanded on those ideas below to give as much advice, hints and tips on writing a really great speech. Enjoy!
how to write a best man speech
"Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen, for those who of you I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting yet, my name is Chris and I am officially Paul’s second best man…second best ladies and gentlemen…nobody likes to be second best do they? Well, Paul, looking at his career, he should know better than most…anyway where were we?"
"Good evening ladies and gentlemen before I begin I’d just like to introduce myself: my name is Chris and it is my very great honour and privilege to be the first of Mark’s two Best Man…we had to split it…46 years is quite a long time to cover all in one go! Over the course of the next few minutes I’ll be taking you through Mark’s sporting heroics, dealing with incredible loss and being caned by people dressed as nuns…which in fact had nothing to do with the stag do"
AN EXAMPLE OF WHAT NOT TO DO...
"Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen, before I begin I would just like to take this opportunity to introduce myself to those of you I haven’t yet met. My name is Dave, and this Bob, and together it is our very great pleasure and privilege to be Colin’s best men for today’s celebrations.At this point I thought I would be nervous at doing Leigh’s speech but I am now looking forward to ripping him a new arse hole in front of all his family and friends and better yet he has to sit there quietly."
This is the most puzzling part because unless you’re a seasoned speech writer, why should you have idea about best man speech structure? There are a few ways to tackle this, but the best idea is to keep things simple and form a logical progression from one piece to the next, don’t let the timeline jump around, don’t confuse the audience, and don’t cover topics or people multiple times.
need help to write your speech?
Being best man.
Don’t waste any time on talking about the time he asked you, or what you’ve been doing in your role as best man, this is only ever filler, and should be avoided at all costs. Remember this speech is only about one person: the groom. If you keep that in mind, it should make things a lot easier. Another common mistake for best men is talk about themselves, mainly by recounting stories where they are the main focus. Don’t fall into that trap.
Some people go to extraordinary efforts and expense to be make it to weddings on the other side of the world, and quite rightly that should be publicly recognised in the groom speech. You should try to group these together as much as possible, so if you’ve got several different guests coming all the way from New York, put them under one umbrella and avoid thanking them individually. It’s also an opportunity to have some fun with where they’ve come from and where the wedding is, so a comparison between Los Angeles and Stevenage is ripe for the picking. Maybe as a pay off you could offer some way in which all that effort is going to be worthwhile such as the free bar/meal/watching you dance.
"Over the next few minutes I will be guiding you though what amounts to one great big cry for help: Paul’s life. The inglorious acting career, the ridiculous hair, owning a ridiculous car, the persistent alcoholic over indulgence and drunken profane outbursts – he was quite simply South West London’s answer to David Hasselhof…just not as successful."
an example of what not to do...
"Now a wise man once told me the best man speech should last as long as it takes for the groom to make love…So thank you everyone for coming. Firstly, I would just like to say how beautiful the bridesmaids look who have only been out shone by the bride herself, who looks amazing today. If everyone could be upstanding, and raise a glass, know as some of you may know Kerry wanted to have the wedding a lot earlier than this, so that a certain something could be involved in the wedding, and unfortunately after a long and hard fight that couldn’t happen. I am of course talking about Mike’s rapidly thinning hairline, you will be sadly missed."
The trick to writing a really entertaining best man speech is to make the whole thing a story, rather than dragging the audience through endless stories. Recounting anecdotes is really hard to do and needs a killer punchline, but all too frequently they aren’t that ‘killer’ and require you to have been there.
Instead take out the good bits from the stories and condense them, even embellish slightly into one neat burst of comedy…
"Now as he embarked on adult life Nick was to learn the hard way just what it is to be a man, and the number one rule is: if you are going to offer to buy the drinks in happy hour, it’s best not to drop the entire lot down yourself as you get back to the table thus meaning you have to go and buy it all again just after happy hour’s finished. Also you should only ever do a runner from a restaurant via the roof if you HAVEN’T actually paid the bill. Leaving Prezzo’s this way one evening after settling up and leaving a good tip, still doesn’t make any sense to anyone."
"Anyway when Mark wasn’t failing to hit the top spot in the classroom he was also finding it difficult to do that on the sports field as well. However, with a modest talent and even less interest, he did the only sensible thing to do: saved up all his skill and enthusiasm for one split second of genius. Quite how he managed to catch the impossible cricket ball as it left our sports master’s bat, is still completely unknown. But with, uncharacteristic razor sharp reactions and gazelle like agility, he did just that, and won his side the match. Literally seconds after this Mark retired from all forms of competitive sport – at the very top of his game."
TRIUMPHS AND DISASTERS
These are ripe areas for comedy material, and whilst, as a best man, you can hint at his accomplishments, that should really come later in the speech, when it all gets a bit more meaningful. Of course, the disasters aren’t real disasters just areas of his life and social situations he’s got catastrophically wrong…for comedy effect.
"It wasn’t all academic and sporting mediocrity though, there have been lots of other things he wasn’t good at too. Forget school discos and trying to speak to girls, Mark had computers eating out of his hand. And it’s easy to see why: with computers you can eventually work out what’s bothering them, they usually only ever break down for legitimate reasons and if you get fed up with them, you can just switch them off. You see, nothing made his heart beat harder or his mind race faster than a computer with a problem. It is a love affair that has endured to this day."
THE IMPACT THE BRIDE HAS HAD ON THE GROOM
This should be a fun look at the way the groom as upped his game, changed his wardrobe and started showing an interest in things outside of pubs, football and waking up late.
"But when he’s not trying to track the dark forces behind his least favourite football club in the world, he also likes to go on holiday. Now going on holiday for Frank is nothing new but the way he goes about it now is very different from the Frank of old. Thanks to his beautiful new wife Emily, Frank now does something called globe trotting which actually involves going to lots of different far flung countries and immersing yourself in their culture, rather than a two hour flight and immersing yourself at the bar."
"It’s always tricky that first stage of the relationship as you go about discovering whether it’s going to work or not. However, for Sean and Lucinda it was a lot trickier, as soon after he met her and became smitten, he had the romantic task of making her redundant. Sean was taking the old addage “if you love them set them free” to ridiculous conclusions, which resulted in Lucinda losing her job."
want to know more about our service?
The wedding day really is only about one person, and that’s the bride. However, although the Best Man Speech should mainly be about the groom, the bride does of course have her part in it as well.
The thing to remember here is, that unless you live in Australia, the best man always goes last, and so the groom will already have extensively talked about how they met. You’re really looking to avoid repetition, so allude generally to how they met, and I’d avoid details…and if they met online and aren’t advertising the fact, then you shouldn’t either.
"Seriously when Mark met you Emily, everyone could see just how happy that made him. He’s always been a great bloke waiting for the right girl and everyone who knows you both will tell you just what a great couple you are together. Mark I couldn’t be happier for you today, we’ve known each other such a long time and I hope that friendship lasts for many more years to come."
"Ali, I know you make Neil incredibly happy – you must do, he’s stopped dressing like a middle aged freak. But seriously, you both make a great couple and I know that he’ll already have the next few years planned out on spreadsheets but if you can fit me in I’ll look forward to spending a lot happier times together."
There should really be only one toast in a best man speech and that’s at the very end. Tradition states that best men should reply on behalf of the bridesmaids at the beginning of the speech in response to the bridesmaids toast by the groom – but it’s just confusing and not necessary. A simple but effective toast at the end and you’re done.
"All that remains for me is to wish you all a long and happy life together, with all the luck in the world."
"Ladies and gentlemen, the bride and groom."
This is where you tie all the strands together, and say what a great friend/brother the groom is, how much he’s been there for you through difficult times, laughed with you through the good times, and always had your back….and if he hasn’t…just lie!
"John, you have been a good friend to me ever since we first met, and I will always look forward to the time we spend together especially when for old time’s sake the Shot Man is once again unleashed. Thanks for being trustworthy, loyal and understanding friends and I hope to spend many more times together for many more years to come…maybe also with that doctor wife you promised me Julie."
"With your laidback, calm and sensitive approach to life Frank, you’re somebody that many people count themselves lucky to have in their lives. Not just because of your willingness and ability to help them out as a friend but because you’re fun and light hearted ways mean you’re always a great guy to be around."
"I am so happy that you’ve found each other to share your lives with and all that remains for me to say is that I hope you have a great day today and enjoy a long and happy life together."
"Sam, we’ve known each other for such a long time and been through such a lot together that it’s hard to know where to begin. All I can say is that I couldn’t have wished for a better bloke to share those years with and I hope that there’s going to be plenty more of them to come. Thanks for being a great friend, and thanks for letting me copy your homework."
From a vast amount of experience you should avoid using props at all costs in your best man speech. It might seem like a great idea to have films, photos, a man in a gimp suit taking the heat off you in a pressurised situation, but it only ever serves to make the day a lot trickier and the speech less effective. As soon as you start holding up pictures or invite people to look at pictures you’ve left on the table they will immediately stop looking at you and start zoning out or talking amongst themselves.
If you give anyone the opportunity to divert their gaze you then have to work really hard to get it back again, and props will only ever make your speech longer and more tedious to endure. They also usually rely heavily on cables, Bluetooth connections, wifi etc etc…or at the very least everyone being able to see what you’re holding up…and they never can. Suddenly you’re getting heckles about not being able to see/hear/understand and it makes the speech the longest 10 minutes of your life.
A great idea if you’ve got funny photographs is to pin them up by the seating plan so that everyone will get to see them and then you can reference those in your speech.
Forget the awful quotes that you normally hear such as ‘it’s not somebody you can live with, it’s somebody you can’t live without, there are some great quotes out there if you look hard enough. Just one for each speech as you don’t want it to become some sort of English Literature GCSE essay.
The greatest gift of life is friendship, and I have received it. - Hubert Humphrey
There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship. - Thomas Aquinas.
Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one. - AA Milne.
Think where man’s glory most begins and ends, and say my glory was I had such friends. - WB Yeats.
Quotes can be a really powerful way to end a speech, and it’s worth going that extra mile to find something that very few have used before, so check out sites such as BrainyQuote and GoodReads for an endless supply of great quotes.
know more about our speech writing service
You are always going to get a heckler or two so it’s worth thinking in advance how to deal with them so they don’t upset your flow, and even better, give you an opportunity to get some extra laughs. The most simple method is just to pause, wait until they’re done and carry on, but if you can get a bit of mileage out of it, so much the better.
A good way of having some fun is simply to ask if they’re looking for assistance in going to the bathroom, this works particularly well if they happen to be on the slightly older side. If it’s a younger person you can assume some vocal surprise that their carers have let them out for the day, or suggest that whatever medication the system has got them on, they need to cut the dose. Anything along this sort of gentle fun vein, always works a treat…as long as they don’t really have a carer and aren’t on medication.
In my experience best man jokes are probably the least effective addition to any best man speech that wants to be classed as superior. By best man jokes, I am alluding to about 100 or so gags that were written over the years specifically to get a laugh from wedding guests. You can do so much better than these, because they’re old, tired an people have heard them all before and the last thing you want to do is land one of these at the start of your speech to a luke warm ripple of polite laughter.
To identify exactly what I’m talking about I’ve listed some of the most prolific offenders.
It’s an emotional wedding, even the cake is in tiers.
It’s not the first time today I’ve got up form a warm seat with a piece of paper in my hand.
If there’s anybody here this afternoon who’s feeling nervous, apprehensive and queasy at the thought of what lies ahead, it’s probably because you have just got married to the groom.
Complete rubbish. You need to work out what it is that's funny about the groom in an original and engaging way, people will love your creativity and laugh much more!
Burning deep within his sole was a dream, what he wanted more than anything, more than being a cowboy, professional tennis player or A ball star…was to be an office manager in the NHS. What can I say? He’s not dreaming any more ladies and gentlemen.
This is one of the most important factors and it actually depends on quite a few things, so we’ll start off with the very general scenario of 3 speakers at a wedding – Father of the bride, Groom and Best Man. If this is the case and it’s in the UK, then the best man speech should be a stand up to sit down time of no longer than 10 minutes. If this is in America, that will be about 5 minutes maximum. Americans like their speeches shorter and more efficient, and that’s no bad thing.
However, these timings will then change the more speakers that are added to the line up, because what the groom should be doing is making sure the section of speeches doesn’t run into hours of your life you’ll never get back. If there are 4 speakers, aim to be in and out in around 8 minutes, 5 speakers you’re looking at about 6 minutes, and so it goes on.
You have to bear in mind also that as you’ll be the last speaker, apart from Australia where you’re up second, and so the guests are at the limit of their concentration endurance, so if they’ve been sitting through 90 minutes of speeches, and it happens, make it REALLY funny, and REALLY short.
If you are two best men making a joint speech then you should be stood for about 12-13 minutes, and that remains the case the more best men are added to the line up. If you’re a co-best man and you’re making separate speeches, then your speech should be about 7 minutes. The timings in Australia are identical to the UK except that the best man goes after the father of the bride.
JOINT BEST MAN
Being a joint best man is pretty common these days, and you really need to tackle what you’re going to go about things as early as possible, because trying to coordinate two guys to write and deliver a speech whilst they juggle their own lives can prove next to impossible.
The first thing you have to decide is if you’re going to make a joint speech or separate ones. The best method is to make a joint speech as it means you won’t double up on gags or content, and nobody has that last dreaded speech spot. A great joint best man speech should consist of about 4 chunks of content each and you bounce from one best man to other all the way through the speech.
However, for many reasons making a joint speech might prove impossible. Maybe there’s no time to coordinate it, maybe you don’t like the guy, or maybe there’s a fundamental clash of ideas. In that case make sure your speech is efficient, tight and punchy and comes in at around 7 minutes, and whatever you do, make sure you get on first.
don't know what to write?
Best man for brother.
Quite a lot of grooms make their brother the best man, and that does throw up a few problems – the main one being that although you’ve grown up in the same family/house etc. you don’t really know that much about him! When I’m writing speeches, this doesn’t really affect the creative process because I’m looking for a very funny comedic overview of who the groom is, not a granular introspection. If you’re facing this very common problem, then just take everything you know about his character, passion, dislikes, job and even hair colour and get the funnies out of that. It can be done but it really needs thinking about.
Of course, there is some fun to be had with the introduction and you need to allude to that fact how upset you were when your number priority spot was completely usurped by a noisy, ugly ginger baby called Dave. If you’re younger than talk about the time you realised the bigger toddler in the house who kept bashing you over the head every time your mum left the room, was in fact your older brother Steve.
As tempting as it may seem to have a quick chronological run through of the groom’s former loves, this will only ever end in disaster. This comes back to my point that the wedding day is really only about the bride – if you do anything to upset her, then it’s pretty terminal. Mentioning former conquests in any way shape or form is something I completely avoid, you might think it’s all light hearted fun but no bride likes to think of their brand new husband being the love interest of someone else!
what to avoid
Many wedding speeches are as memorable for what they got wrong, as to how much they got right. For some reason the most educated and intelligent guys seem to save their biggest lapses of judgment for the Best Man Speech. It’s really very easy to avoid disaster but you have to have your mind open to the fact that these suggestions are created from years of experience, and no matter how funny you think what you’re going to say is, if it appears in the list below, forget it.
1. The Stag weekend – you might still be buzzing from a weekend in Krakow, and have made some interesting new friends and gained life changing experiences, but it’s incredibly dull to listen to. Mentioning the stag weekend will make a handful of guys laugh and just come across as boorish and exclusive. The aim of the game is to make everyone laugh.
2. Fake Telegrams – This one is the perennial favourite of the best man who has completely run out of things to say, and is about as funny as a punch to the head. Delivering a fake email message from the Ping Pong Strip Club in Bangkok is one of the oldest and most unfunny insert into any best man speech.
3. Bridesmaids – some best men, buoyed up by a little alcohol and a disproportionate sense of bravado feel inclined to mention the bridesmaids in a lewd and disparaging way. We are now living in the modern world and offering to become their latest conquest is always route 1 to disaster.
4. Alcohol – this isn’t to be avoided but used in extreme moderation. Drinking for self-confidence all too often results in catastrophic consequences. A couple of drinks in the run up is fine, but any more than that and your performance will be badly affected.
5. Swearing – most weddings are family occasions for all ages, so swearing is absolutely not acceptable. It’s quite possible to be really funny and emphasise a point without resorting to the F word, and doing so will only ever make you look crass and inappropriate.
6. Sexual Innuendo – this is another common howler of a mistake. Intimating any form of sexual performance, be it in the past, or indeed involving the bride later on, is a complete no-no.
7. Ice Breakers – these are the scripted gags from the internet that have been round the block a million times and are designed to warm up the crowd. The only thing is they’re never funny, and so delivering an age old joke that won’t get a laugh is possibly the most counterproductive way to start your speech.
8. Being The Best Man – this speech is about the groom, not you, and so I couldn’t care less about how you felt when you were appointed or what you’ve had to put up with. It’s always just filler material for people low on content or imagination.
9. How They Met – you have to bear in mind that you’re coming after the groom, who will have almost certainly covered this area. The last thing you want to experience as best man is seeing chunks of your speech covered by others.
10. Ex Girlfriends – yes, it may seem obvious to many of you but this is by far and a way the most common error made in Best Man Speeches. The wedding day is really about one person: the bride. Mentioning former love interests, no matter how flippant you think it might be, will only seek to upset her. It never works in any way, shape or form. Don’t go there.
how to deliver the speech
You can have a great speech but it will all come to nothing if you can’t land it on the day. Here are my thoughts on the three main delivery methods.
1. Memorise the whole speech – this is not for the feint hearted and as best men are normally manically busy finding the time to devote to it proves tricky. Also you tend to focus on recalling the speech so much that genuine performance is affected. A mental block can prove catastrophic.
2. Cue Cards – this is probably the most popular way for most best man speeches and does work really well, but you have to know it inside out. Keep reading it every spare minute you have and it will cement itself in your mind. Remember the key words that make a joke sing.
3. Reading from a sheet – Contrary to what some may say, this can work really well. There are just a few things you need to bear in mind: speak as slowly and purposefully as possible, lots of pauses and LOADS of eye contact. Make sure you have something to rest the sheets on as they will be flapping around like crazy if you don’t.
WE CAN WRITE THE SPEECH FOR YOU
Best man speech template.
Many people like the idea of saving time by using some kind of best man speech template. Whilst this may sound like a tempting idea – simply fill in the blanks and away you go, it rarely works in practice. Every best man speech present a unique set of challenges, and a using a best man speech template won’t address them. What if you have no stories? What happens if you haven’t seen the groom since school? What do you do if you’re not the type of person that can do ‘funny’? A template won’t solve these problems, and in my experience is little more than an introduction, a space for your stories and an ending. Best avoid.
Many best men race to get that first funny line in there, and usually at the expense of quality. Keep it warm, funny and never edgy. The humor in a best man speech is simply there to balance out the more meaningful things you’re going to be saying. Use it sparingly, as this is not a comedy roast.
"Good afternoon everyone, for those who of you I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting yet, my name is Chris and I am officially Paul’s second best man…second best ladies and gentlemen…nobody likes to be second best do they? Well, Paul, looking at his career, he should know better than most…anyway where were we?"
"Good evening everyone, before I begin I’d just like to introduce myself: my name is Chris and it is my very great honour and privilege to be the first of Mark’s two Best Man…we had to split it…46 years is quite a long time to cover all in one go!"
"Over the next few minutes I’ll be taking you on the rollercoaster ride that has been Sean’s life to date, and there are some amazing stories; like the time he was playing A ball with George Bush in Mexico and his dog ate the President’s guinea pig and he had to sell my passport to repair his own nose…actually I’ve known Sean 30 years…I might have muddled a few things up there…"
"Good afternoon everyone, before I begin I would just like to take this opportunity to introduce myself to those of you I haven’t yet met. My name is Dave, and this Bob, and together it is our very great pleasure and privilege to be Colin’s best men for today’s celebrations. At this point I thought I would be nervous at doing Leigh’s speech but I am now looking forward to ripping him a new butt, in front of all his family and friends and better yet he has to sit there quietly."
Don’t waste any time on talking about the time he asked you, or what you’ve been doing in your role as best man, this is only ever filler, and should be avoided at all costs. Remember this speech is only about the groom, and the person he’s marrying. If you keep that in mind, it should make things a lot easier. Another common mistake for best men is talk about themselves, mainly by recounting stories where they are the main focus. Don’t fall into that trap.
HOW YOU KNOW THE GROOM
This comes establishes a connection with the audience – they can immediately understand why you’re best man and what you mean to the groom and it’s always an opportunity to have some fun with it, especially if you’re a brother!
"My first mistake was going to stay in the shared apartment in New York, where he lived. My second was to comment on the hair. As a glass bowl of pot pourri went sailing past my head and smashed behind me giving off a wonderful burst of sandalwood fragrance, I was given enough time to realize that this was a troubled, sensitive character who didn’t take criticism that well. Perfect friend material."
"I first properly met Nick way back in 1994 when we started secondary school together. Little did we know it at the time but it was the start of a beautiful relationship, which, for me, EVENTUALLY proved worth pursuing years later when I was able to borrow all his notes and graduate high school. Of course, Nick didn’t need them because he might look quite cool now but he was in fact a complete square at school. The day when he could read without putting his finger on the word and then count without using his hands, were both real breakthrough moments in his life, only to be capped a few weeks later when he passed his driver’s license."
"I first met Brent when we attended the University of Texas and pledged a fraternity together. It was here amongst the upside down beer bongs, ritual humiliation and complete lack of sleep that I knew I had met a friend for life. This may sound overly emotional and slightly premature but when you discover your new buddy is packing his dad’s credit card with no limits, who wouldn’t want him as a friend for life? Just for the record Mr. Schakett, I know at times you may have been concerned about the amount of money Brent spent on alcohol and food on that card. You shouldn’t have: the Shot Man Schakett never wasted any of your money on food."
we can write the speech for you
Best man stories should be used sparingly, and you want to keep them efficient rather than dragging the audience through things in real time. Recounting stories is really hard to do because they require a killer punchline, but all too frequently they aren’t that ‘killer’ and require you to have been there.
"Now as he embarked on adult life Nick was to learn the hard way just what it is to be a man, and the number one rule is: if you are going to offer to buy the drinks in happy hour, it’s best not to drop the entire lot down yourself as you get back to the table thus meaning you have to go and buy it all again just after happy hour’s finished. Also you should only ever leave a restaurant via the roof if you HAVEN’T actually paid the bill."
" Anyway when Mark wasn’t failing to hit the top spot in the classroom he was also finding it difficult to do that on the sports field as well. However, with a modest talent and even less interest, he did the only sensible thing to do: saved up all his skill and enthusiasm for one split second of genius. Quite how he managed to catch the impossible baseball as it left our sports master’s bat, is still completely unknown. But with, uncharacteristic razor sharp reactions and gazelle like agility, he did just that, and won his side the match. Literally seconds after this Mark retired from all forms of competitive sport – at the very top of his game."
This should be a fun look at the way the groom as upped his game, changed his wardrobe and started showing an interest in things outside of bars, baseball and waking up late.
"It’s always tricky that first stage of the relationship as you go about discovering whether it’s going to work or not. However, for Sean and Lucinda it was a lot trickier, as soon after he met her and became smitten, he had the romantic task of making her redundant. Sean was taking the old saying “if you love them set them free” to ridiculous conclusions, which resulted in Lucinda losing her job."
"Cassie, can I just say that you look absolutely beautiful today, I think we can all agree Brent is one lucky guy. I always had a sneaking feeling that Brent was batting way above his average, now I know he is! I have seen over the years just how happy you both are together and I am so thrilled for Brent that he’s met such an amazing woman to share his life with. Also if you could find it in your big, warm heart to allow The Shot Man and that credit card to come out to play, then you would make some grown up, financially independent men, very happy too."
WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT OUR SERVICE?
Although the Best Man Speech should mainly be about the groom, the bride does of course have her part in it as well.
The thing to remember here is that, generally speaking, the best man always goes last, and so the groom will already have extensively talked about how they met. You’re really looking to avoid repetition, so allude as to how they met, and I’d avoid details…and if they met online and aren’t advertising the fact, then you shouldn’t either.
"Seriously when Mark met you Emily, everyone could see just how happy that made him. He’s always been a great guy waiting for the right girl and everyone who knows you both will tell you just what a great couple you are together. Mark I couldn’t be happier for you today, we’ve known each other such a long time and I hope that friendship lasts for many more years to come."
"Ali, I know you make Neil incredibly happy – you must do, he’s stopped dressing like a middle aged freak. But seriously, you both make a great couple and I know that he’ll already have the next few years planned out on spreadsheets, but if you can fit me in I’ll look forward to spending a lot happier times together."
"I can see how incredibly happy you have made my old friend over these last eight years and just how much you have helped to change his life for the better. He’s always been a great guy buy now he has wider horizons and a greater sense of adventure. And I know just how much of a support you’ve been to him through the tough times. I think you are a great couple and I look forward to many more happy times together in the future."
"Please everyone raise your glasses to the bride and groom!"
"John, you have been a good friend to me ever since we first met, and not just in the form of free shots and hosting parties. We’ve had great times going to the games, hanging out and making that journey from college to adult life. I know there will be less time for me in your life as I’ve now been replaced by a small dog called Ben, but you’re catholic, and now you’re married – I can’t see that dog getting a look in for months anyway. However, I will always look forward to the time we spend together especially when for old time’s sake the Shot Man is once again unleashed. Thanks for being trustworthy, loyal and understanding friends and I hope to spend many more times together for many more years to come…maybe also with that doctor wife you promised me Julie."
You might get a heckler or two so it’s worth thinking in advance how to deal with them so they don’t upset your flow, and even better, give you an opportunity to get some extra laughs. However, the most effective method is just to pause, wait until they’re done and carry on, but if you can get a bit of mileage out of it, so much the better.
KNOW MORE ABOUT OUR SPEECH WRITING SERVICE
Quite a lot of grooms make their brother the best man, and that does throw up a few problems – the main one being that although you’ve grown up in the same family/house etc. you don’t really know that much about him! When I’m writing speeches, this doesn’t really affect the creative process because I’m looking for a an engaging overview of who the groom is, not a granular introspection.
Of course, there is some fun to be had with the introduction and you need to allude to that fact how upset you were when your number priority spot was completely usurped by a noisy, baby called Dave. If you’re younger than talk about the time you realised the bigger toddler in the house who kept bashing you over the head every time your mum left the room, was in fact your older brother Steve.
We write the most highly rated best man speeches, and we can help you
behind the speech
My name is adrian, what our clients say, how we work, a simple process, to create a great wedding speech.
Begin your journey to a great speech by scheduling a one-on-one consultation with Adrian, who will tailor the session to fit your schedule and speech goals.
Once your booking is confirmed, Amy will guide you through a straightforward payment process, leading to a comprehensive questionnaire designed to capture the essence of your message.
Adrian delves into your answers, crafting a speech that resonates with your voice and vision, backed by meticulous research and expertise.
Experience our commitment to excellence with the delivery of your initial draft within a week, followed by unlimited revisions and steadfast support to ensure your complete satisfaction.
LET'S WORK TOGETHER
- Bridal Shower
- Bachelor & Bachelorette Parties
- Engagement Party
- Rehearsal Dinner
- Wedding Checklists
- Wedding Hairstyle Ideas
- Wedding Vows Readings
- Wedding Music
In This Article
- Top Speech Examples
- How To Write The Perfect Speech
- Speech Template
Best Man Speech Ideas
- Opening Lines
- Toasts Examples
- Speech Jokes
- Speech Delivery Tips
Frequently Asked Questions
- Wedding Party & Reception
Best Man Speech Magic: Crafting Words that Resonate and Inspire
Hey! Your friend’s wedding is around the corner and he requests you to be the best man? Your best man speech has to be brilliant! Believe us, writing the best man’s speech is much easier than you think.
Read our article for examples, useful recommendations, and even templates to help you!
Top Best Man Speech Examples
Best man speech for friend.
Best Man Speech for Brother
“Good evening, hope everyone is having a good time tonight. I feel very privileged and honored to be standing here tonight celebrating this lovely union. Two years ago, Matt gave the best man speech at my wedding and made a lot of awkward jokes. So needless to say, I’ve been waiting for this moment for a really long time! For those who don’t know, I am Matt’s brother, Mike. I first met Matt when I was two years old at our parent’s house in Boston. To be quite honest, I wasn’t thrilled because I really wanted a sister. And I think he knew because Matt would do ridiculous things like throw my toothbrush in the toilet, pour water at me when I was asleep and run across the room naked when I had any friends over. This made me less popular than I already was. Matt always excelled in school, was captain of the debate team (apologies to Cara, but he can argue his way out of anything!) and can make a mean steak. The truth is, despite him being an annoying brother at the time, I came out winning in the end. Because of him and this beautiful night, I am getting the sister I always wanted. Cara, you’re beautiful and our family loves you so much. Thank you for making my brother so happy. Let’s celebrate this amazing union and raise a glass to the newlyweds ! On behalf of the groomsmen and bridesmaids, we’d like to wish you a life full of love, happiness, and joy. To everyone who made tonight happen, thank you. You’ve made this night very special.” Source
More Inspiring Best Man Remarks (Heartfelt, In Your Wheelhouse, Loving & Original)
Short Best Man Speech
“Ladies and gentlemen, may I have your attention, please? As the best man, I stand here today to say a few words about the remarkable love story between my incredible friend, [groom’s name], and his beautiful bride, [bride’s name]. [Groom’s name] and I have been through thick and thin together, and I’ve had the privilege of witnessing his growth as a person. But it wasn’t until [bride’s name] came into his life that I saw a change I can only describe as transformative. Their love is like a beacon, guiding them through life’s ups and downs. So here’s to the newlyweds—a couple who have found not just love, but true companionship. May your journey be filled with happiness, passion, and an everlasting bond.”
Funny Best Man Speech Examples
Best man talk for adam and kate.
“Adam and Kate – What a great day to get married! Marriage carries new responsibilities. Kate – from now on, you should never argue or disagree with Adam, because he is now the head of the family and the king of his castle. You will be expected to keep your hair and make-up perfect at all times – to dress in a way that pleases Adam. You should cook his favorite meals every night and encourage him to go out with his friends on a regular basis. Do these simple things and your marriage will be blessed with many years of happiness. Kate – I know that Adam loves you very much… because he spent a long time writing this speech for me. Congratulations to the both of you!” Source
Best Man Presentation for Sarah & Simon
“Sarah & Simon – every great relationship starts with rings. In the beginning, the phone would ring and just the thought of speaking to one another was exciting. Your love grew and so did your commitment to each other. The engagement ring soon came after. There were no doubts… your love was true. The engagement ring has now turned into a wedding ring and we are all here today to celebrate your marriage. Now of course… the suffer-ring begins. (smile and raise your glass) Peace and happiness to the new bride and groom!” Source
Speech for Neil and Claire
“Hi my name is Paul and Neil has asked me to be his best man for this wonderful occasion. I would like to say it is a very special honor but with it, comes the responsibility of giving the bloody speech. I would not say it is very comfortable to wear a tuxedo in a 30-degree church, which is not air-conditioned. The church ceremony I’m sure you’ll all agree was a wonderful, wonderful occasion. Maybe a little hot, but I’m glad to see so many of you have replaced your electrolytes with fuel of the alcoholic kind since the reception began. I have known Neil and Claire for_________ [how many years] years. You might say Neil and I met by accident, but it is no accident that Neil met Claire. If you know Neil you know he is an excellent athlete, in fact I noticed his Athletes foot right away. This was a man who had his knees and ankles shaved, for easy taping. I knew this was a hard-core sports fanatic. We both share a tremendous love of football and basketball. For many years, we have had a running bet during the season as to who will score more goals or more runs which of course, I always won. Neil is a ______________ [Groom’s Occupation] in Truro, and I thought__________________________________[Funny or quirky aspect about grooms occupation] Neil is a man who has dedicated his life to __________________[Grooms occupation] And now I’m sure will use his experience with ___________________________[what the Groom does in his occupation] in his marriage with Claire. It is great that Neil found Claire. He has always been looking for someone young, dynamic, intelligent, attractive, and with good health insurance. Neil and Claire met_________________________ [where they meet], But I have it on good authority that Neil started looking for a wife on the internet. And with a multitude of resources at his fingertips, he found some really great stuff, but sadly was unable to find himself a suitable partner. That is, until I mentioned to him that the correct category to be looking should be Woman Seeking Man. I explained the way it works, send an old picture when you still had lots of hair, lie about your height and weight, and at all other times be sincere and honest. I imagine that when Neil and Claire met and introduced each other he said I’m Neil and she said, “I need a Diamond.” So, Neil said, sure let’s pick one out. Claire is a Diamond. Neil is a gem; I think together they make beautiful jewellery. No Marriage would be complete without some brotherly advice to help set you on your way… So I canvassed the room and got some really good stuff for you! Love, honor and cherish each other, and don’t forget to take out the garbage. Your wife is always right. Just in case she is not right, refer back to #2. Always, yes always, notice every new hairstyle or dress. Do something nice for each other every single day. If she asks if something makes her look fat the answer is categorically, NO. Flowers are always a good Idea, even if you are not in trouble. There is really nothing better than a good foot rub or massage. Your wife is more important than sports. I guess. Even the cup final. It is a great joy for me to see Neil and Claire so happy. You learn things when you get older. Hmmm, I mean more mature. You make better decisions, isn’t it great that two people would entwine and commit to each other for life. Love, isn’t that what it is all about? We are here to celebrate that glorious event and this ceremony is all about letting the world know how much Neil and Claire’s love for each other is a reflection of one’s own soul in another’s. Anyway, it is time to celebrate the joyous and unbridled love that these two spectacular people will share the rest of their lives. Would you please stand now and join me in a toast. To love and laughter and happily ever after.” Source
How To Write The Perfect Best Man Speech
For a great wedding speech, there are some simple rules you have to follow. Here are examples of best man speeches Dos and Don’ts.
- Plan your speech ahead (think about your best man speech structure, choose formal or funny style) and practice.
- Tell a short story ( keep the speech to about 5 minutes or less ) with jokes (2 or 3 will be enough).
- Memorize your speech. Don’t read from paper. Let it flow.
- Get sentimental at some point, make compliments to the bride.
- Finish on an optimistic note (end your speech with love quotes or wishes for the happy couple).
- Be thankful (express gratitude towards the couple, their family, and anyone who helped make the wedding happen).
- Do not cross the 2-5 mins time limit.
- Do not make it about you.
- Avoid dirty jokes.
- Do not ignore the bride. Let her know how happy you are, that she is ending up with your friend.
- Avoid rude remarks. Keep your manners in check, even if it’s for a day.
Best Man Speech Templates
Click here to download free printable templates of best man speech!
When creating the Best Man speech outline for your talk, include the following elements to involve everyone, making one and all feel that they are important participants in the merrymaking for the newlywed couple:
Use a Magnetic Opening Line
The opening words of your Best Man presentation should grab everyone’s attention. If you favor a romantic approach to start off a speech, you can start with a statement like, “True love wins all,” and then list the various ways the Groom, through his true love for his Bride, has won all her attention and affections.
- If some of the Groom’s favorite hip singer-songwriters date back to the 1960s and ’70s, you can quote from Bob Dylan: “ Love is just a four-letter word ,” going on to mention the many words of just four letters that relate to feelings of true love like “ kiss, hold, keep and ever. ” Be intent and clever with the use of language, and you will achieve better engagement with your audience.
- If your tastes (or the tastes of the newlyweds) are somewhat more classical, you can start by quoting the familiar line from Elizabeth Barrett Browning: “ How do I love thee, Let me count the ways. ” This popular line has been repeated in many variations by countless poets and songwriters ever since, so have no fear of labeling yourself as an egghead when quoting it. This opening line will also give you a chance to mention the main virtues and attributes of the Bride.
Thank the Other Speakers
It is always appropriate and appreciated if you thank the other speakers for the occasion. These speakers usually include the Maid of Honor and the Bride’s Father as well as any other members of the wedding party that the Bride and Groom ask to speak.
It is always good form to express your gratitude for their contributions to this special moment and event. Never criticize or make jokes about what they say or how they say it. Just thank them politely and continue with your own remarks since you know very well how to write a best-man speech.
Congratulate the Newlyweds
Congratulate the wedding couple on this exciting first chapter in their lives together. This is the ideal time to tell the guests how you met your great friend, the Groom. If you happen to be the Groom’s brother or cousin, you can recreate moments of hilarity from your younger years together or shared experiences of suspense or intrigue.
Recalling funny incidents or telling best man speech jokes involving the Groom is totally acceptable, so long as you keep the format and content clean and respectable.
Compliment the Bride
Now it is time to pull out the stops and give high praise to the Bride using your knowledge of how to write a best man talk. Highlight and emphasize her finest qualities, talents, and accomplishments.
Let them know just how overjoyed you are to celebrate the marriage of these two special people of whom you think so highly. Then give the Bride another charming compliment using top-quality speech writing tips.
Read Messages from Absent Guests
Take time to read some messages from invited guests who could not attend the wedding. This gesture is always appreciated by the absent guests and the Bride and Groom, alike. It also includes their congratulatory thoughts and best wishes for the newlyweds in the day’s special events.
Include a Famous Quote or Poem
Enchant your attentive audience of wedding guests further by reciting a well-known quote or poem that suits the occasion. This adds a creative literary element to the post-wedding celebration for the honored couple. You may want to consult other templates, including a listing of groomsman speech examples.
You may choose a quote from the Groom’s favorite writer, artist, scientist, philosopher, business mogul, or sports figure, or just pick a best man speech quote that suits the occasion. Again, keep it tasteful, brief, and to the point, so everyone present can enjoy the full meaning and intent.
Propose a Toast to the Wedding Couple
Raise your glass of champagne so the guests can eagerly follow your example as you deliver a heartfelt toast of optimistic good wishes for the excellent health, increasing wealth, and everlasting happiness of the newlyweds.
The toast should be given with gusto and true sincerity and may include mild best-man speech jokes. Remember that you speak for all the well-wishers in the room who want all the best for this newly married Bride and Groom, so put your best energy, spirit, and talents for convincing elocution into this featured Grand Finale.
The following are quoted “ Heartfelt Best Man Speeches ” that are excellent quality templates for contemporary Best Man remarks at any after-wedding reception, dinner, and party:
The “Thankful” Speech
“Hello everyone, it’s such a pleasure to be here tonight as [Groom’s] best man. And I want to begin with saying what an honor it is that I was chosen to stand by your side today. You’ve always been someone that I looked up to and I am just beyond grateful that I get to share in this moment with you and [Bride]. [Groom] is someone that I’ve come to care for greatly over the years and I am so happy that he’s found someone to share his life with and start a family with. [Groom] has always been my right hand throughout the biggest moments of my life and I can’t wait to be able to watch everything beautiful unfold for the two of you. Cheers to a lifetime of happiness!”
The “Smart Move” Speech
“There’s an old saying about friendship that reads, “It is one of the blessings of old friends that you can afford to be stupid with them,” and goodness that couldn’t be more true for me and my boy, [Groom]. I could go into all the funny stories that include some of that stupidity but instead I’d rather focus on all the smart moves he’s made. His friendships, the relationship he has with his family, his career, it’s all a reflection of the incredible man he’s become. But really, the smartest move he’s made is marrying you, [Bride]. Let’s toast to the best decision [Groom’s] ever made. I wish you a lifetime of love, happiness and success.”
The “She Was the One” Speech
“Ladies and gentlemen, thank you all for coming out tonight to celebrate the wedding of two people we all love, [Bride] & [Groom]! When I first met [Bride], I knew that she was the woman [Groom] would end up marrying. Even if it hadn’t dawned on him quite yet, it was obvious to everyone around just how smitten he was with her. They talk about a bride’s glow, but this man was shining since the moment he met [Bride]. He changed for the better without realizing it. And we all could see it. He couldn’t stop talking about her. We’d go out with the boys and [Bride’s] name would be brought up every two minutes. So, when he came to me to tell me that he would be proposing my only response was, ‘Well, it’s about time!’ There’s something special about these two. They go together without forcing it. They love each other without fighting it. And they care about each other without thinking about it. She was the one from the very beginning [Groom], and we’re all so happy to be able to take part in your big day. Cheers!”
Best Man Speech Opening Lines
Your opening lines are your best-man speech icebreakers, so it’s important that they are good. Grab the attention of your guests with witty best man speech openers such as these.
- “I would like to begin by congratulating the groom on his excellent taste in best men. He has really outdone himself this time, and I’m pleased.”
- “I have been asked by the bride and groom not to share any embarrassing stories, crude jokes, or pranks during my best man’s speech… so I guess that’ll be it from me! Thank you all for listening.”
- “If you cannot hear me at the back, nothing to worry about. By the complete silence in the front row here, you can rest assured that you’re really not missing much.”
- “Is anyone here this afternoon feeling nervous and queasy at the thought of what lies ahead? If you are, it’s probably because you’ve just married (groom’s name).”
- “All of you here who really know the bride must know that she is a wonderful person who deserves a good husband. Thank goodness (groom’s name) married her before she found one.”
Best Man Speech One-Liners
I am about to make the groom cry. I just received the food bill.
He is smart, tall, kind, generous….. Who am I actually talking about?
Hi, the groom is a great friend. Our friendship is 2hours old. I was hired as he’s got no friends.
His colleagues describe him as a first-class banker – I may have misheard them.
I heard some time that marriage is a 50/50 affair. Believe that at your own peril. We have factors called women and improper fractions.
One-liners are sharp jokes delivered in one sentence. A good one-liner is concise and meaningful. It is instant but loaded with humor that can keep the guests laughing for a while. It is important that the best man speech jokes contain one-liners.
Best Man Toasts Examples
“It’s been an emotional day, even the cake is in tiers.”
“Folks, I have been told I am not allowed to have a drink until AFTER my speech. If I seem like I’m in a hurry to finish, it’s because I am.”
“I hope the two of you have the two essential things it takes to have a successful marriage 1) a sense of humor 2) selective hearing.”
“Psychiatrists say that girls tend to marry men like their fathers. That must be why mothers cry at weddings.”
“Love is not about how often you say I love you, but how often you show that it’s true.”
Best Man Speech Jokes
“They say marriage is a journey, and tonight we celebrate the beginning of an epic road trip for the bride and groom. Just remember, guys, never forget to ask for directions!”
“They say the key to a successful marriage is patience, understanding, and a remote control with fresh batteries. Groom, make sure you always keep that remote handy!”
“Let’s raise our glasses to the newlyweds: may their love be like Wi-Fi, strong and never disconnecting, even in the midst of Netflix binges!”
“As the best man, it’s my duty to share a piece of advice with the groom: in marriage, always remember that a happy wife means a happy life… and also remember to nod and agree, even when she’s wrong!”
“Marriage is a lifelong commitment, just like the gym membership the groom signed up for and rarely uses. But this time, there are no cancellation fees!”
Best Man Speech Delivery and Presentation Tips
When delivering your best man speech, it’s essential to captivate the audience with your words and presence. Here are some tips to ensure a memorable and engaging delivery:
- Maintain good eye contact with the audience: Look directly at the guests while speaking. Eye contact helps establish a connection and shows that you are genuinely engaged with them.
- Speak clearly and at a moderate pace: Enunciate your words clearly and avoid rushing through your speech. Speaking at a moderate pace allows the audience to understand and absorb your message effectively.
- Use appropriate gestures and body language to enhance your delivery: Use hand gestures and body movements to emphasize key points and add energy to your speech. However, be mindful of not going overboard and distracting from your message.
- Incorporate pauses for comedic timing and to allow the audience to react: Timing is crucial, especially when delivering humorous anecdotes or punchlines. Pause before and after delivering a joke to build anticipation and give the audience time to laugh and react.
By implementing these delivery and presentation tips, you’ll engage the audience, leave a lasting impression, and make your best man speech a memorable highlight of the wedding celebration.
There is truly something for everyone today to create the perfect Best Man Speech for that very special couple and their after-wedding reception, dinner, and celebration. Fond remembrances, amusing stories and anecdotes, humorous quotes, and emotional phrases end with the joyful ring of a clever, yet heartfelt Best Man Toast to the Bride and Groom. The contemporary wedding is truly a work of love and art with all the trimmings and enticing treats for one and all to treasure and enjoy.
What do best men have to say?
The best man typically delivers a speech that includes light-hearted anecdotes about the groom, expressions of friendship, and well-wishes for the couple’s future. The speech often incorporates humor, personal stories, and a toast to celebrate the joyous occasion.
How long should the best man’s speech be?
A best-man speech should last anywhere between 3 to 5 minutes. This way your speech is not too long and boring, and also not too short. The general rule is to keep speeches under 10 minutes at least.
Is it customary for the best man to give a speech?
Traditionally, the best man delivers a speech at the wedding reception, typically following the maid of honor. However, some couples may choose to schedule speeches during the rehearsal dinner instead. Generally, the best man gives one speech, either at the wedding reception or, less commonly, during the rehearsal dinner. This speech is a significant part of the celebration, offering the best man an opportunity to share anecdotes, express well-wishes, and contribute to the joyous atmosphere of the event.
Who does the best man usually toast?
The best man usually toasts to the newlyweds, offering congratulations and wishing them a lifetime of happiness and love.
Stories You Might Like
Mexican Wedding Cake Ideas Guide for...
95 Charming Wedding Bible Verses
Ideas With Candles 30+ Best Ideas
Get Inspired: Wedding Reception Ideas...
Bloom In Love: The Top 13 Popular...
Vow Renewal Ceremony Script: Free...
4 Sparkler Photo Ideas & Tips For...
Must-Take Romantic Photos On Your...
Great Frank Sinatra Wedding Songs
45 The Most Popular Wedding Slideshow...
The Wedding Ceremony Order: Perfect...
The Most Gorgeous Spring Wedding Colors...
25 Free Wedding Planning Checklists
Fill in all required * fields below to receive the checklists bundle.
- PRO Courses Guides New Tech Help Pro Expert Videos About wikiHow Pro Upgrade Sign In
- EDIT Edit this Article
- EXPLORE Tech Help Pro About Us Random Article Quizzes Request a New Article Community Dashboard This Or That Game Popular Categories Arts and Entertainment Artwork Books Movies Computers and Electronics Computers Phone Skills Technology Hacks Health Men's Health Mental Health Women's Health Relationships Dating Love Relationship Issues Hobbies and Crafts Crafts Drawing Games Education & Communication Communication Skills Personal Development Studying Personal Care and Style Fashion Hair Care Personal Hygiene Youth Personal Care School Stuff Dating All Categories Arts and Entertainment Finance and Business Home and Garden Relationship Quizzes Cars & Other Vehicles Food and Entertaining Personal Care and Style Sports and Fitness Computers and Electronics Health Pets and Animals Travel Education & Communication Hobbies and Crafts Philosophy and Religion Work World Family Life Holidays and Traditions Relationships Youth
- Browse Articles
- Learn Something New
- Quizzes Hot
- This Or That Game New
- Train Your Brain
- Explore More
- Support wikiHow
- About wikiHow
- Log in / Sign up
- Education and Communications
- Communication Skills
- Public Speaking
How to Write a Best Man's Speech
Last Updated: February 7, 2023 Fact Checked
This article was co-authored by Patrick Muñoz . Patrick is an internationally recognized Voice & Speech Coach, focusing on public speaking, vocal power, accent and dialects, accent reduction, voiceover, acting and speech therapy. He has worked with clients such as Penelope Cruz, Eva Longoria, and Roselyn Sanchez. He was voted LA's Favorite Voice and Dialect Coach by BACKSTAGE, is the voice and speech coach for Disney and Turner Classic Movies, and is a member of Voice and Speech Trainers Association. This article has been fact-checked, ensuring the accuracy of any cited facts and confirming the authority of its sources. This article has been viewed 2,651,414 times.
Even the most talented public speaker can get nervous about giving the best man's speech at a wedding. Being the best man is one of the biggest honors you can receive at a wedding, and you're expected to give a speech that respects that honor, makes the crowd laugh and cry, and pays tribute to the special couple on the most important day of their lives. The important thing to do when making a best man's speech is to thank people for being there, describe your connection to the groom, and to make people laugh while avoiding any cringe-inducing comments. If you want to know how to write a moving and memorable best man's speech, then see Step 1 to get started.
Sample Best Man Speeches
Writing a Special Speech
- For example, most best man speeches have a bit of humor in them for levity and to get the crowd going. But if this really isn't for you and making jokes just feels too forced, you don't have to follow that convention.
- On the other hand, if you're known for your humor and sarcasm, you don't have to force yourself to be overly sentimental. Just a few words of honest sentiment would get the message across without making you feel like you're faking it.
- If public speaking is not for you, don't be nervous about it. You can even make a joke about how much you love public speaking, or about how this is the groom's way of punishing you/getting you back for that time you made him push your car up a hill.
- Though your speech should be well prepared in advance, take a look at the crowd; if people are particularly restless or eager to drink and dance, then you may want to cut out that second anecdote you weren't sure about.
- Though it's typical for the best man and maid of honor to give a speech, there may be other speeches given out there. The father of the bride sometimes speaks, and there may be two maids of honor and thus, two speeches. And maybe even drunk Uncle Bertie will try to say a few words. If there are a number of speeches, then it's especially important to keep it short so the crowd doesn't spend all night listening to people talk.
- Don't be embarrassed about keeping a written version of your speech with you when you go up there during your big moment. Even if you don't use it as a reference, just having it there can make you feel more confident about not making any mistakes.
Delivering Your Speech
- Remember that people often videotape best man's speeches. You don't want yourself looking sloppy on camera for all of eternity.
- Depending on how the reception goes, someone else may introduce you and you won't have to do this part. But be prepared in advance in case you're given the microphone and find that your audience isn't exactly rapt.
- "For those of you who don't know me, I'm Brian, [groom's name here]'s little brother."
- "I'm Jake, [groom's name here]'s best friend. I've known him since the seventh grade, and I've known [bride's name here] ever since their second date."
- "I'm Danny, [groom's name here]'s best friend. I've known [groom's name] and [bride's name] ever since our freshman year of college. We all lived in the same hall."
- It's also nice to thank the guests for being there. You can also thank the bridal party.
- Optionally, you can also thank the bridesmaids. Mention what great friends they have been for the bride and tell them how lovely they look. You can play this for laughs a bit as long as you don't come off sounding like a total creep. You can say something about the lovely color of the dresses, how big of a help they've been during the wedding, and whatever else you can say that is quick and tasteful.
- Remember that half of the people in the room may not know each other. People should be able to find your speech funny and moving without knowing the groom or hearing an excessive amount of detail about someone they don't know. Of course, if it's a more intimate wedding and it seems like most people do know each other, then you can go into a bit more detail, if you like.
- If you're the groom's brother, you can joke around about how he used to tease you mercilessly when you were little, or how you used to give him a hard time. You can also make a joke about how not much has changed in that regard.
- Remember to keep up a nice emotional balance. You should have as many sweet and heartfelt comments about the groom as jokes.  X Research source
- Tell a funny story. This will not only break up the formality of the ceremony, but also help endear the couple to the audience. A great way to grab everyone’s attention would be to introduce it by saying “I'm about to let you in on a secret about the groom" or "the groom begged me not to include this story in my speech but I simply had to."
- Alternatively, tell a touching story. A particularly appropriate story might describe how the bride and groom met or something sweet that helped move their relationship forward. Since you are the groom’s best friend, this might be a good place to describe how you watched him fall head-over-heels for the bride.
- If you can't think of any appropriate stories or don't know the bride well enough to include her in one, make some observations about love or marriage in general, or about the groom's feelings for the bride. Even if you haven't spent a lot of time with the bride, you can make observations about the first time the groom told you about the bride, or what the groom said about their first date.
- Though you want to choose a humorous anecdote, make sure it is appropriate for everyone; the last thing you want is to come across as humiliating or mean-spirited.
- If you mention that time when the groom and bride broke off their engagement for three weeks or talk about how much more fun your best friend used to be before he got with his "ball and chain," then his wife may never forgive you. You don't want to sever your relationship, or put it in question, over something like saying a few thoughtless words in a speech.
- Don't make it a speech about how you first really didn't like your buddy's wife and then came around, either.
- And lastly, do not think it's funny to insult the venue or the food. Someone shelled out a lot of hard-earned cash for what you might think are tacky Christmas lights or rubbery chicken.
- You can talk about something the groom did for you. Say something like, "I'll never forget the time Mark helped me move across the country to follow my dream. I couldn't have done it without him."
- It's completely normal to find this part a little embarrassing. Just remember that this is your buddy's day, and no one's going to laugh at you for getting a little sappy.
- If you don't know the bride very well, that's okay. Instead of saying that bluntly, you can say something like, "Though I haven't spent as much time with Mary as I would have liked, I could tell right away that she was right for Jeff."
- Say something like, "Even when Mary and Jeff are on the opposite side of a room, you can feel them looking out for each other. They don't have to be glued together to have such a strong, incredible bond."
- You can also make a comment about how much you admire their relationship and have always looked for a love as strong as theirs (if you're single). If you're married, you can share some thoughts on marriage and why the groom and bride are a great match.
- You don't have to overdo it and say they are a perfect pair, meant for each other, soul mates, or the like, if you don't really feel that way. You can mention the strengths of their relationship without making it sound too forced.
- Don't force yourself to do this unless you find one that's really fitting. There's another one that goes, "Marriage isn't about looking at each other. It's about looking outward in the same direction."
- You can say something like, "Ladies and gentlemen, I'd like to propose a toast to Mary and Jeff. May they have years of joy, happiness, and health ahead of them."
- You can also say something like, "Here's to a lifetime of happiness for Mary and Jeff."
- If the bride took the groom's last name, you can propose the toast to "Mr. and Mrs. Thompson."
Video . By using this service, some information may be shared with YouTube.
- Make the bride's family, who may not know the groom, feel comfortable about the groom taking over his new protective role and starting a new life with the bride. Thanks Helpful 1 Not Helpful 0
- Keep mints in your pocket, as you will be getting up close and personal with many on the day of the wedding. Thanks Helpful 1 Not Helpful 0
- Stay sober before giving your speech. Looking like a drunk will sour everyone's impression of you and may call the groom's judgment into question. Thanks Helpful 28 Not Helpful 55
- Unless you're certain that you know all of the guests and their tastes, do not let your speech get off-color. Skip the dirty jokes, the suggestive remarks about the honeymoon, and the stories about the groom's ex-girlfriend. They probably aren't appropriate. This isn't a locker room. Even if the groom and his friends find them funny, the bride and her mother probably won't. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
- Don't force humor. If you don't like speaking in public and aren't confident in your ability to be funny, it's much better to read a serious speech off index cards than to try to become a comedian for one night. Most jokes from "Best Jokes for Weddings" books or web sites are not funny. No one will be mad at you for not being funny enough, but every single person in the room will cringe if you suddenly transform into Michael Scott. Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
You Might Also Like
- ↑ https://www.artofmanliness.com/character/etiquette/how-to-write-deliver-good-best-man-speech/
- ↑ Patrick Muñoz. Voice & Speech Coach. Expert Interview. 12 November 2019.
- ↑ https://www.theknot.com/content/best-man-speech
- ↑ http://www.askmen.com/money/how_to/best-man-speech.html
About This Article
To write a best man's speech, try to keep your speech around 2-4 minutes so you don't lose everyone's attention. Start your speech by introducing yourself and saying how you know the groom and bride. Then, share a touching story about the groom and maybe even throw in a light-hearted joke. You should also compliment the bride as well as the bride and groom's relationship. Finally, wrap up your speech with a nice quote and propose a toast. To see examples of a best man's speech, keep reading! Did this summary help you? Yes No
- Send fan mail to authors
Reader Success Stories
Mar 30, 2016
Did this article help you?
Apr 5, 2016
Dec 9, 2016
May 24, 2017
Jun 2, 2017
- Do Not Sell or Share My Info
- Not Selling Info
wikiHow Tech Help Pro:
Develop the tech skills you need for work and life
Best Man Speech Examples
The best man speech is usually the most eagerly awaited of all the wedding speeches. Traditionally the best man speech comes last and you’ll want to pack it with jokes, embarrassing stories about the groom and some lovely words for the wedding party. We’ve got a huge selection of real best man speeches to use as examples and loads of ideas and advice articles too!