Sadly it’s not unusual when seemingly well informed people don’t RSVP when the invitation clearly requests it.
Having an accurate number of expected guests is critical at weddings and other large events. You need this for:
- your caterer for meal planning and preparation
- for your rental company for accurate quantities of chairs, linens, etc.
- for your florist for quantities of centerpieces
- your bartender for accurate numbers of alcohol and other beverages
- making a seating chart
You may wonder why some people don’t feel the need to reply. In reality it’s probably more of an “I’ll take care of that later” than an “I don’t have to.” It’s so easy to get caught up in the everyday goings on, that filling in and sending back an RSVP gets forgotten.
Emily Post has said, “No one is obligated to accept an invitation or to explain their reasons for not accepting. However, when someone is kind enough to extend an invitation, one should be just as kind and reply to the invitation.”
Unfortunately not everyone gets it!
You’ve sent an RSVP card with the “reply by” date clearly on it, and have included a pre-addressed and stamped envelope. You’d think that it couldn’t be any easier, but lo and behold, you still haven’t heard from them by the time the return date that is on the card.
What to do?
Easy! You need to contact those people who have yet to reply and find out if they will be attending.
The simplest way is to make a phone call. All you have to say is, “Hi ______. We’re looking forward to seeing you at our wedding, but haven’t gotten your RSVP back yet. Will you be able to make it?” Also ask their desired menu selections if you are offering a choice of entree options.
Don’t say anything like, “You haven’t sent the RSVP card back,” because they may have, but it got lost in the mail. (Even if they haven’t mailed it back, you don’t want to put them on the defensive). There’s also an off chance that they never received your invitation in the first place. Again, it may have gotten lost in the mail, or the address you have for them is incorrect.
Anyway, stick to “We’re looking forward to celebrating with you. Will you be there?”
Make sure you get a definite yes or no, not a maybe. Your caterer needs definite numbers, not “maybes.”
If you feel that if you make the calls yourself that you will end up stuck in big conversations, enlist for help of others to make some phone calls for you. Family members, your bridesmaids, and your wedding planner can all call on your behalf.
If you are an invited guest, here are a few helpful hints for you to remember.
- Reply as soon as possible. Don’t put the invitation in your “to do” pile unless you need to ask the availability of another person whose name may be on the invitation with yours.
- Keep your reply brief. If you cannot attend, there is no need to go into great detail about why you can’t be there.
- If a reply is not requested, it is not necessary to respond. However, it is nice to let the host know when you cannot attend.
Hearts, Joy, Love!