RSVP Etiquette – Tips before and After Sending out Wedding Invitations

Planning a wedding tends to be one of the highest stress points in a couple’s journey. Having a better understanding of what you can do to eliminate wedding planning stress during the process will assist you further down the line. Here are some tips and tricks to keep in mind before and after sending out your wedding invitations:

rsvp etiquiette and houston wedding planning

Guests to be  


  1. Check your Mail Often: Depending on your relationship with the couple, you may have a good idea of the wedding date. If this is the case, be sure to check your mailbox/email often so that you don’t miss out on the rsvp date of the wedding.
  2. Respond promptly: Open your invitation immediately and respond prior to the RSVP date. If you receive the traditional, mailed invitation you may need to send your response back a few days in advance so that it is received on time. Also, if you are required to send your response back via mail, it may be a great idea to follow up with whom is responsible for rsvp’s by phone or a quick email expressing your excitement for their big day and check to make sure your response was received
  3. Follow Instructions: This part is especially important. Some partners have put a lot of thought into their rsvp instructions from the way they need their guests to respond to something as little as a song request. Additional reading may be required when receiving your invitation. So, if your invitation asks you to reply yes or no along with your song choice for the DJ, be sure to include replies to both requests.
  4. Be Polite: If you’re unable to make the wedding for whatever reason, it may be a good idea to follow up with the couple with a nice personalized note sincerely expressing your sadness for not being able to make it and wish them the best! Even if they do not respond, be sure that they will receive it with understanding and gratitude

Do Not

  1. Change your response: Prior to responding, look over your calendar and make sure all prior engagements can be moved around and all parties are communicated with. Double check with your plus one (if given the option to bring one) to make sure that they have done the same. If you’ve already responded that you’re unable to attend, but have a schedule change that allows you to be in attendance, only communicate this change if it is before the rsvp deadline. Doing so after inconveniences the couple and takes more time than you think to reconfigure. The same rule applies if you replied you could make it but then later find you are unable to. Couples understand that unexpected instances such as family emergencies or personal medical emergencies happen. Those would be categorized as an acceptable excuse to change your rsvp.
  2. Ask for Plus One: The couple has already configured their budget to account for the number of people they are able to feed for the wedding. It comes off as rude and inconsiderate to the couple when asked if you can bring a guest. Do not take it personally if you’re unable to bring along your significant other or a friend. This is the couples preference or what their budget allows. If the invitation is addressed to only you, then that is the final decision.
  3. Respond Via Text: No matter your closeness to the couple, never respond to the invitation via text. The casual “Yep, I will be there!” will not land you a seat at the table. Save the couple the hassle and respond in the way in which is stated on the invitation. Keep in mind the money and the time the couple placed into creating and sending out formal invitations.

The Married Couple to be


  1. Time it out: As a rule of thumb, send out your invitations six to eight weeks prior to your wedding. Rsvp deadlines should be set three to four weeks prior to your big day.
  2. Organize: Keep track of your rsvps by creating your own event online. This will allow you to receive instant updates to when someone has responded to your invitation. In addition, you will have the ability to enter any rsvp details or guest information directly to the event.
  3. Be ready for Questions: There may be a lot of questions coming from your invited guests regarding seating, food options and much more. It may be a great idea to delegate all invitation responsibilities to a person in your wedding party so it doesn’t become overwhelming during the process.

You may also like to check: Wedding Day Invitation Styles and Designs – A Vintage Approach

Do Not

  1. Give in: Try not to let your guests sway you into allowing them to change their replies after the rsvp deadline. Of course, there isn’t much you can do if they can’t make it, but if they replied “no” and then later express that they are able to attend, do not make an exception. Respectfully let your guest know that the rsvp deadline has passed and arrangements have been finalized. As far as plus one requests go, you and your spouse have already configured your expenses and come to the conclusion that you are not allowing guests to bring a plus one. Be firm and confident in this decision despite any challenges you may receive from your guests.
  2. Stress: Once your invitations are sent, let go of any worries you may have about who will and will not be able to make it. Your day will be filled with love and great memories regardless. Allow whom you have appointed to handle your RSVPs to update you with rsvp statuses and inquiries.

We hope that you have found these tips helpful!

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