“Répondez, S’il Vous Plaît” Etiquette

You have known the French phrase of “RSVP,” since you were young and attending birthday parties for your friends. Politeness and etiquette can go a long way in life and it is essential at the time of your wedding. You cannot control other people’s replies, but if you get your wedding invitations out far enough in advance, you can give your guests the best chance to send a timely reply.

  • Save the date: six months to a year ahead of time
  • Wedding invitation: six to eight weeks prior to the wedding, if most of the guests have to travel – nine to twelve months in advance
  • When to expect RSVPs: give your guests four to six weeks to reply, so make sure you set the RSVP date at least two to three weeks before the wedding.
  • No responses: It is perfectly acceptable that if you have not heard from a guest by the response date, to call them. There is always a possibility guests can show up to your wedding without an RSVP, so there should be a backup plan for seats and food.

Getting replies to your wedding invitations should not be like pulling teeth. Here are some tips to get your replies:

  • Opt for a wedding email or website, specific to your name. This option will help digital replies fly in, faster than the rate of snail mail
  • If you’re old fashioned and prefer RSVP cards sent back to you, make sure you give your guests a deadline of two weeks before you actually need the RSVP cards. Side note: Be sure to include a pre-addressed envelope and a pre-fixed stamp.