How to Politely Remind People to RSVP for Your Wedding

wedding invite

PHOTO BY LAUREN FAIR PHOTOGRAPHY, Stationery by Sweet Zion Paperie

RSVPs are useful for so many reasons. Yes, they let you know which of your guests will and won't be attending your wedding, but RSVP cards also help you give an accurate meal count to your vendors, enable you to create table assignments, and can even tell you where guests are staying and which peripheral wedding events they'll be attending. This means not receiving all of your RSVP cards can cause a huge headache.

Here's how our experts recommend you politely remind guests to RSVP and get them to stick that card in the mail.

Time Your Reminders Right

When you're following up with guests, timing is key. If your RSVP deadline is August 3rd, don't start making phone calls on August 4th. Chances are a lot of cards went into the mail right as the deadline hit, so allow three or four days (or a week if you can spare it) for the post office to pick up the cards and deliver them to you.

Pick up the Phone

Once you've accounted for a little extra time, get on the phone. Sure, texting is easier (and might be the best way to get a response from the guests who are your age), but when it comes to etiquette and formality, a phone call is the way to go. Be super polite—chances are your guests have no idea they missed the deadline—and simply say "We are really hoping you'll be able to join us. Have you had a chance to look at your calendar?"

Above all, be gracious but direct, and don't let your frustration show, no matter how annoyed you may feel about the failure to respond by your due date. You should call your own friends and family members, while your fiancé should call theirs.

While you've got your invitee on the phone, this is a great time to gather any additional information you need (or would just like to have), such as their meal choice or the name of the hotel they've booked.

Make It Personal

If you decide email would be the best way to reach your guests, don't send a group email to everyone who didn't RSVP. Instead, a personalized message to each guest or couple is the way to go—that way no one is embarrassed in front of your other friends and family members. Keep the note friendly in tone and express how much the person's presence would mean to you, but let them know you need a final guest count as soon as possible.

Enlist Your Parents

Speaking of family members, for relatives who haven't RSVP'd, talk to whichever of your parents is closest to them to see if they've heard anything before you make the call. Is your mom's cousin dragging her feet? It might be easier to get an answer if Mom makes the call instead. The same goes for the guests of your parents: A little nudge from your parents might be all it takes.

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