When leaving a party, do you say “goodbye” to your host, or do you “ghost”?

Jul 5, 2013


Do you have to say goodbye when you leave a party? ; Credit: tbphoto&video/flickr

You’re at a friend’s Fourth of July party, you’ve had your fill of hot dogs and Bud Lite, and you’re officially ready to pull the ripcord and head home, but your host is locked in conversation with another of his guests. Do you interrupt them and awkwardly excuse yourself, or do you simply slip away into the night without so much as a “ciao”?

It’s been dubbed the “French Exit,” the “Irish Goodbye,” or, as Seth Stevenson wrote on Wednesday, “ghosting.” One school of thought argues that it’s rude to interrupt a meaningful conversation to say a perfunctory goodbye, while others think it inexcusable to not excuse yourself formally.

How do you leave a party? Do you announce your departure or simply ghost? And when you’re the host, are you offended by the ghosters or annoyed by the lingering goodbyes?


Anna Post, co-author of the 18th Edition of “Emily Post’s: Etiquette”

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