Let's face it weddings are an investment of time, energy and resources. Knowing whether your guests are attending allows you to plan and budget, in order to skip the stress of unexpected guests as well as no shows on the actual day. Most caterers and planners require a headcount for your wedding or event about 2-3 weeks in advance to make sure they plan for food, seating arrangements and other necessities at your wedding. Enter the modern day RSVP - which literally translates to "Répondez s'il vous plaît" or "Please respond" to confirm attendance ( or regrets) to an invitation. After over a decade of experience creating wedding RSVP cards for all types of wedding events and we are happy to share what we have learned!
Online vs. traditional mail back RSVP cards
Thanks to the modern functionality of wedding websites in our high-tech age, it can be tempting to forgo paper RSVP cards completely. However, we’ve found that online RSVP systems can sometimes create more work for you! There are apps you can install on your wedding website for your guest's last name int he RSVP. However, if your guests aren’t tech savvy or their name is misspelled on the site, they won’t be able to RSVP successfully. In many cases you will need a First and Last name for each guest that is spelled exactly as the guest spells it in order to have the system recognize the name.
If, on the other hand, you decide to provide an email address or phone number for your guests to RSVP, you may end up spending hours of your valuable planning time, speaking to your guests. Calling them by phone or trying to draw additional information that they may not have included by email – like the full names of everyone in their wedding party or the number of people attending. Some guests will simply forget to do it. Then you’ll have to track them down by phone or email, creating more work for you. Talking/emailing with to 50+ guests in addition to all the other wedding-planning tasks you have will be hectic and time consuming!
We recommend you give your guests an option to be tech-savvy or retro! Have them physically mail back the wedding RSVP cards from their invitations. Or, let them use a code they can plug into your wedding website to RSVP online. This way, your tech savvy and international guests can use their unique code to RSVP online, saving themselves the hassle of putting something in the mail. Your older or less tech-savvy guests can stick to tradition and mail in their RSVP.
Collecting Wedding RSVP's For Multiple Events:
Most importantly, onto the nitty gritty of how to create wedding RSVP cards for multiple events with varying guest lists! In many cultures, it is customary to have smaller pre-wedding or post wedding events. However, if your guests see an event they are not invited to on their RSVP cards, they are sure to be offended or confused. So, it's important that your RSVPs for multiple events are done right!
We offer many wedding RSVP wording options in our system. In this case, there are a couple different ways to do this
PRINTED RSVP SETS WITH MULTIPLE EVENTS OR DIFFERENT GUEST LISTS:
Option 1 • You can create different versions of wedding RSVP cards for each guest list. For example, create one version to send to guests who are invited to your pre-wedding event, wedding ceremony and reception. Then, create a separate version to send to guests who are invited only to your wedding ceremony and reception only. We reccomend you order extras of each RSVP card version, in case your guest lists for any event change before invitation-mailing time!
Option 2 • Printed RSVP Sets: Your RSVP envelope from Love On Paper can hold multiple cards for Duet and Storybook formats. Our petite enclosures fit perfectly inside the matching RSVP sets for both Storybook and Duet Invitations. You can customize separate petite enclosures as RSVPs and pair them with an RSVP set from our collection. With this path you will have a separate RSVP card for each event and can choose quantities.
ONLINE RSVP OPTIONS WITH MULTIPLE EVENTS OR DIFFERENT GUEST LISTS:
In this case, we recommend selecting a web site template that allows for a different code per event. Then either print or write the appropriate code for each of your guests on their invitation of information card before mailing. On the other hand, if your pre-wedding events are less formal than the main event, you may be able to get away with a phone number or email address for the RSVP.
RSVP wording for a Destination Wedding
So you maybe wondering how to handle the case of destination weddings with multiple events, where people tend to come and go based on their travel schedule. Guests may not be there for all events. We suggest sending one RSVP card with a checklist of events to “Accept” or “Decline”.
Guest Lists & RSVPs
If you come from a big family you may know exactly what we are talking about. Or you might think this is a topic of whether you allow your guests to bring a plus 1. If you have limited space at the event, you may need to politely limit the number of guests from each household.
This can be accomplished in your RSVP card wording. At the top of the RSVP, you can add a line that says:
We have reserved ___ number of seats in your honor.
Then, write in the number of guests from that household prior to sending out the invite. This is the a polite way to extend an invitation for your single girlfriend to include a +1. On the other hand, specifying the number of invited guests can serve as a subtle note to your co-worker's live-in mother-in-law to not attend.
Set An RSVP Deadline & Manage mail-back RSVP cards
Deadlines for wedding RSVP cards should be based on the date when you and your vendors need an accurate headcount. Check with your venue, caterer, and planner and make sure you allow yourself enough time to create a seating arrangement. For most, the timeline is 2-3 weeks prior to the event.
Sometimes it helps to incentivize for your guests to mail in their cards on time. Include a line for a song request to get guests excited about cutting a rug at your wedding!
For mail back RSVP cards, be sure to prepay for postage for any guests you expect a mail-back card from.
Come up with a plan to contact guests if you don’t receive their RSVP by the due date. Delegate and enlist some help from family and bridal party members to accomplish this without too much stress!
Most people manage their RSVPs in a google doc or spreadsheet. We like Google Docs because it's easy to share these with parents and wedding vendors when working out the seating plan later.
In Conclusion, We hope these tips will help you navigate your RSVP cards for weddings with multiple events and for multicultural weddings ! To see more samples of Love On Paper’s customizable RSVP cards, click here.
We invite you to comment below to let us know if this guide was helpful or if you have any other questions we can help answer! 🙂
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