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Top 18 Mexican Wedding Traditions and Their Meanings: All You Need to Know

Well, when you are either planning to date Mexican brides or invite guests to your wedding ceremony, you may want to learn more about Mexican wedding traditions. How do locals prepare for wedding ceremonies? How to dress, and what foods to serve? This time, you will learn about the most popular Mexican wedding traditions of coins, reception, partying, and so on.

Top 18 Mexican Wedding Traditions and Their Meanings: All You Need to Know
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Do Mexicans Follow Mexican Wedding Traditions?

Before we begin our journey to some of the most romantic Median wedding traditions, let’s find out whether the locals follow them. Indeed, Mexican girls from the metropolitan area may not necessarily express the irresistible desire to participate in the 100-year-old wedding customs.

If you don’t think all those ceremonies make sense, you may find a Mexican woman with a similar mindset. But the chances are your particular girl and her family will want to perform a wedding ceremony, as over a half of Mexican weddings involve some customs and rituals.

Before the Wedding Ceremony Begins

To keep things clear and consistent, we will tell you about wedding preparations in Mexico in the first place. Check them out below.

Marriage Approval

Mexico is somewhat old-fashioned when it comes to dating since parents have high authority over their children. Parent’s disapproval of your partner might become a significant obstacle in your relationship. In some families, parents choose grooms and brides for their children.

This feature historically formed a tradition of marriage approval. As a groom, you have to ask your bride’s father for permission to marry his daughter.

If her father blesses your bond, then you can proceed further and start preparing for the wedding. You have to develop a friendly relationship with the family of your bride before making a proposal and asking for marriage approval.

But don’t worry, because this tradition is rather formal these days – it doesn’t impact your relationship as strongly as it did decades ago.

Happy Mexican Couple
Happy Mexican Couple

Mexican Wedding Traditions: Who Pays?

Which family should cover expenses might be a daunting question to answer these days. Since following all the Mexican wedding traditions and customs might be expensive, the families try to negotiate and pay for whatever they feel comfortable with.

After all, you would want to make your wedding ceremony an enjoyable, memorable event rather than a hardline code to follow. As a rule, the wealthier family buys the priciest items and services. Yet, you would want to know who pays for what according to Mexican traditions. After all, if you provide certain wedding services a groom traditionally has to cover, you will earn much more respect from the bride’s family.

The Groom Pays for the Bride’s Dress

Mexican culture revolves around traditional gender roles. Thus, a man is supposed to provide for the family. He is the leader. By the way, this is the actual reason why a groom has to ask the bride’s father for permission to marry her.

But since a groom will establish a family and become its leader, he’s expected to show his ability to support his union financially. That’s why Mexican wedding traditions expect the groom to pay for the dress of his bride.

The Groom’s Family Pays for the Formal Visit

It’s common for Mexicans when a groom comes to ask for his bride’s hand and heart together with his family.

It’s like a formal reunion of two families when both parents have a chance to get to know each other better. In this case, a groom’s family should cover any expenses involved (transportation, dinner, and so on).

Wedding Sponsors

In Mexico, a wedding usually involves sponsors, which are godparents. Mexicans call them los padrinos and los madrinos (godfathers and godmothers, respectively). Godparents typically provide the couple with religious items like Bible, coins, and so on.

They also accompany the groom and the bride during the wedding ceremony. Occasionally, they buy some gifts for the couple. Godparents usually pay for the wedding parties or/and prepare meals, decorate the wedding hall, etc.

Mexican Wedding Dress Traditions

Years ago, once a groom gave his bride money for her wedding dress, her family started sewing it together. In this way, the bride’s family symbolically creates a new family. As a rule, the bride with her parents sewed a bright-colored dress and decorated it with leaf embroidery.

But they did so mostly because ordering a dress from a skilled tailor cost a small fortune. Now, Mexican brides can choose from all wedding attires imaginable with affordable price tags. So selecting a wedding outfit in Mexico doesn’t differ from shopping in the US.

Usually, a modern Mexican bride’s attire incorporates contemporary Western features:

  • A veil.
  • Elaborated white A-line dress.
  • Possible traditional elements like embroidery.

What Should the Groom Wear?

Mexican grooms usually wear embroidered white summer shirts called “guayaberas” paired with embroidered black or white linen trousers. However, you can choose whatever formal outfit you like (just like your bride), including a tuxedo.

Top Mexican Wedding Ceremony Traditions

Mexican wedding ceremonies involve formal meetings, partying, as well as serving ceremonial gifts. Let’s start with the church ceremony.

Catholic Ceremony

Most Mexicans are Catholics, which reflects their wedding traditions as well. Depending on budgets and preferences, most Mexican couples either invite a priest or conduct the formal part of the wedding ceremony in the Catholic church.

It is a highly sacred ritual, which usually involves a large number of guests. The groom and the bride are supposed to kneel to the altar and swear to be with each other till death do them apart. It sounds like it’s right out of a romantic movie, and it really is. Also, the couple should keel on a ceremonial pillow, which they can take with them once the ceremony finishes.

Mexican Wedding Traditions: Lasso

A wedding lasso is another symbolic element of the Catholic Mexican wedding traditions. Once the couple exchanges wedding vows in front of the priest, the godparents place a lasso over their shoulders to underline their union. It’s funny enough because a couple is tied together. Mexicans believe this will keep the marriage healthy.

Wedding Lasso
Wedding Lasso

Mexican Wedding Traditions: Arras

Arras is a fascinating Mexican tradition of giving 13 coins (serving them in an ornate box) to the bride as the symbol of commitment. Mexican wedding traditions of 13 coins also share some common attributes of Puerto Rican wedding traditions.

The groom serves the coins, swearing to protect his wife and support her financially, physically, and mentally.

It is also a symbol of trust. By doing so, the groom entrusts his finances to his wife. By accepting the gift, the bride swears to trust her partner and take care of him and the family whatever happens.

Why exactly thirteen? This number symbolizes 12 apostles and Jesus Christ. By the way, godparents (or sponsors) are traditionally responsible for arranging this ceremony and preparing the gift. So don’t neglect involving your godparents in the wedding preparations.

Mexican Symbolic Gifts You Will Receive During the Ceremony

At the end of the ceremony, your newly formed family will receive the following symbolic gifts:

  • The kneeling pillow.
  • Flowers and rosary beads.
  • The Bible.

But the official church meeting is only the beginning of the ceremony. After that, the real celebration begins. Keep reading to learn more about Mexican wedding reception traditions.

Mexican Wedding Reception Traditions

Once the happy pair exchanges their rings and officially becomes a family, it’s high time to celebrate this event. At this point, a wedding reception comes in. It’s a post-ceremonial party.

Mexicans drink to the newly formed family, dance, sing, and enjoy plenty of interactive events and funny competitions.

Mexican Wedding Dance Traditions

In the absence of media and TV, people utilized their imaginative powers to the fullest at celebrations like weddings. For example, Mexican wedding traditions of reception involve plenty of dances. Read about them below, and you will take those mind-blowing dances like a duck to water.

The Sea Snake Dance

If people around you start screaming “la vibora de la mar” you know it’s time for a “snake” dance. It works the following way:

You and your wife should stand on chairs (or other mounts) facing each other. Then, you have to hold hands to form an arch. You may want to use some cloth as an arch to fit people beneath.

The guests will then go through the arch holding hands and forming a “snake.” They will accompany this spectacle with songs and dances. It is one of the most popular Mexican wedding traditions of dance which is pretty fun and takes place at almost every wedding ceremony.

La Vibora De La Mar - Traditional Wedding Dacne
La Vibora De La Mar – Traditional Wedding Dacne

The Money Dance

The money dance will bring you plenty of enjoyment, and most importantly, a bunch of cash. So guests will pin cash to your clothes if they want to dance with you for a while. So at the end of the event, your guests will cover you with money entirely.

Pet Husband Dance

Pet husband dance aims to make fun of the traditional gender roles in Mexico. So you will switch roles with your wife during the performance. She will wear a cowboy hat and a belt, and you should take a broomstick and put on an apron – which are symbols of female chores in Mexico.

Mexican Wedding Traditions: Food

Traditional Mexican wedding foods are not something a vegetarian would enjoy. But if you’re into a lip-smacking steak, you would love these foods just by looking at them. So check the meals to consider when preparing for your wedding parties.

Meat Dishes

According to Mexican wedding food traditions, the tables should groan with meaty dishes prepared with chicken, beef, pork, etc. These include pulled pork, beef tacos, mole enchiladas (chicken & cheese meal baked in tortillas), and so on.

Desserts

Traditional Mexican desserts include lots of sweets:

  • Churros – dough snacks coated with caramel and cinnamon. It tastes like heaven!
  • A corn cake – coated with powdered sugar, ice cream, or caramel. Whatever you choose will lift you to the seventh heaven.
  • Mexican snowball wedding cookies. No wedding in Mexico comes without these tasty snacks. The “snowballs” combine vanilla, sugar, nuts, and milk.
  • Dozens of other snacks your Mexican mother-in-law will prepare for the wedding party!
Churros - Traditional Mexican Dessert
Churros – Traditional Mexican Dessert

Top Three New Mexican Wedding Traditions

Contemporary Mexican American wedding traditions are so much fun. No wonder they become massively popular across Mexican communities. Check some of them below.

A Tequila Donkey

Donkeys are cute. But your attachment to this animal will make a giant leap forward once you meet its leveled-up Mexican version – a tequila donkey. At today’s Mexican wedding, people equip donkeys with saddles full of tequila. Why haven’t you married a Mexican bride yet?

Wedding March

Mexico is home to some of the most welcoming people in the world. It also reflects Mexican wedding traditions. Thus, some Mexican communities celebrate weddings with crowded processions accompanied by singing and dancing. Indeed, a new family joins the community! These celebrations are called “la marcha” and resemble mini-festivals since they often hire orchestras.

Bachelor Party

Many cultures have their bachelor parties, traditional “weekends” only for guys before upcoming marriages. Mexican-American wedding traditions are no exception.

Mexicans also have these parties that don’t differ a lot from similar events in the United States. It is a newer tradition that resulted from the fused cultures and a lot of interaction between the two nations.

Final Thoughts

Both contemporary and ancient Mexican wedding customs are amusing and will help you develop much closer relationships with your parents-in-law as well as your lovely Mexican wife.

Besides, a traditional wedding ceremony is something you shouldn’t neglect performing, as it usually happens once in a lifetime and will supply you with enjoyable memories for the rest of your life. So if your Mexican bride wants to marry you with honor to traditions, do your best to make this event truly memorable.

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