No one likes to feel as if they are an afterthought. But when it comes to planning one’s wedding, having guests wait until the 11th hour to reply – or not replying at all, can evoke numerous emotions and wreak havoc for the wedding planner(s) and the couple. So, what are proper wedding invitation and RSVP etiquette? Are there specific steps or responsibilities for the invitees? Absolutely!

The Do’s and Don’ts of Wedding Invitations and RSVP Etiquette

If you have been invited to a wedding, please don’t leave the couple waiting around until the last possible minute! They have arrangements to make – from seating to dance floor and food to tables- and they need to finalize these arrangements sooner, not later. So, RSVP etiquette is important for everyone.

RSVP Etiquette for the Wedding Invitation

While it is vital that your guests respond as soon as possible for your big day, it is on you to be sure they have plenty of time to plan! Ideally, you need to allow 3-4 months lead time from receiving the invitation to the wedding day. If it is a destination wedding, you need to give a minimum of 6 months – preferably 8-10 months.

RSVP Etiquette for Recipient

Simply put, there’s no such thing as responding too early. Today’s technology makes it easier than ever to RSVP quickly. If you respond nearly immediately, it is not an indication that you don’t have a life- instead, it tells the couple that you are excited and are looking forward to being a part of their day. Whatever you do, do not wait until the very last day to let the couple know your plans! This is poor RSVP etiquette and makes the couple feel as though they aren’t important to you.

RSVP Etiquette if Saying “No”

Sometimes, people put off replying to the invitation because their answer is “no,” and they aren’t sure how to handle that. Here’s a tip- Don’t feel obligated to explain or overshare why you will not be there. A simple, “I’m sorry I can’t attend. I am sorry to miss. Hope your day is wonderful!” is sufficient. Again, be sure to let the couple know this information as soon as possible.

RSVP Etiquette for Following Up

Planning a wedding has many pieces and parts, and while there are things you have to stay on top of from the beginning, don’t make following up on RSVPs one of them from the outset. There is no reason for you to start chasing down invitees a week after sending out the invitations or the minute the RSVP date arrives. However, it is allowable to reach out with a phone call, text, or email to confirm that they got the invitation to begin with, then mention that you would love to have them there but understand if they can’t. This type of reminder is friendly without being overbearing.

RSVP etiquette is not just something nice to follow or be aware of. It is another way of letting the couple know that they matter to you and that you want their wedding day to be wonderful. If you have questions regarding the couple’s preferred RSVP etiquette, be sure to ask them as soon as possible. Then make plans accordingly. They will thank you for it.

Still have questions about wedding invitations and RSVP etiquette? Talk to one of our event planners at Gala Events Facility.