After coordinating a number of events this year, I have found it interesting at the number of people who don’t RSVP to weddings and events. My first thought is that people aren’t aware of what an RSVP is and the importance of it.
Have you every wondered what those four letters really stand for? RSVP is an acronym for répondez s’il vous plaît, which is a French expression meaning “respond, if you please.” Generally, it was an addendum to an invitation and you’d respond to the person sending the invitation with your acceptance or regret. RSVP on any kind of invitation means that they are requesting a response from the people the invitation is addressed to; either a yes or a no, along with the name of your extra guest IF your invitation was addressed to “and Guest.”
Pretty simple huh?
One thing you will learn when you're hosting an event, especially a wedding is that there can be a challenge with people responding. They either lose the return cards, forget to mail them, assume you know they’ll be there or think that telling you or your partner that they’re coming is an appropriate response.
I totally get it; the hustle of everyday life has us all busy and things sometimes slip our minds. But honestly, there is no “great” excuse not to RSVP unless you are ill, dead, or on fire. Someone went through a lot of trouble to have these tiny cards printed, matched to their invite, adorably post marked stamped, and color coordinated to send to you and all you need to do is check the box, yes or no.
The problem is that as busy as you are, so is the person or couple who sent you the invitation. The reason they sent you an RSVP card is because they don’t have the time to send three emails and eight text messages going, “Hey, just checking to see if you’re coming???” You already know if you’re going by the time the date RSVP date. If you don’t, pick up the phone and tell them that. It’s not rude at all—things happen and you might not know until two days before the wedding if you can get off of work, find a sitter, etc. But tell the couple that, and let them tell you if they still can include you, or if they just can’t. A “maybe” is better than nothing at all, and it lets the person or couple decide what to do.
Remember, these people that are dishing out a boat load of money for their event and typically need to know an accurate count of guest to ensure they have enough food, linens, cake, and the list goes on and on….
So what are some tips to help you remember to RSVP?
- Post the response card on your refrigerator or somewhere where you visit often to remind you to send it back.
- As soon as you receive the invite, respond right then. That way, you don’t even have to put it in the stack of “to do’s.”
- With so much technology these days, put a calendar reminder on your phone to remind yourself to respond by the due date.
So with all that said, do you have an RSVP card that needs a response? Be polite and send it in today. You were special enough to receive an invitation so please be kind and respond as requested. Your response will be greatly appreciated. As always, stay FABULOUSLY informed!
Have any questions about RSVP etiquette? I’m happy to help you. E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.