Failing to RSVP

May 15, 2019

It’s something that is so easy to do, yet no one seems to do it. The lack of it frustrates us, confounds us, and even makes us mad sometimes. The odd thing is that everyone complains about it!  A lot of us are annoyed that people don’t do it yet show up anyway. Have you guessed what we are talking about? Yep. Failing to RSVP.

The number-one question people ask us is why no one will RSVP anymore. It’s quite a challenge to plan an event when you don’t know how many people to plan for. It's crucial that you know exactly how many people you'll be having at your party so that you can order seating, decor, food, alcohol, cake and party favors for the right amount of people, but you can't rush the RSVP because you don't want your guests to be flustered. 

People’s insensitivity to the efforts of someone extending hospitality to them is a top irk of ours. Believe me, we understand your frustration. The  RSVP date and list is one of the most frustrating parts of planning a party.

Here are some tips on how strict you should be with your RSVPs for your event.

 

What Does RSVP Mean Exactly?

RSVP loosely translates from French as “Please Respond.” It’s an easy request. It just means that the hosts are asking us to let them know whether we’re coming to their party or event so that they can plan seating, food, and anything else they need to arrange for your needs and comfort.

Plan Ahead.

If you get your invitations out early, your guests are more likely to RSVP early and get your wedding on their calendar. Send out your invitations as soon as you can so that you can receive feedback quickly.

 

Be Smart With Your RSVP Date. 

If you need to tell your catering company and party venue your exact number by the 30th of the month, tell your guests that you need to know their RSVP status by the 20th. Always make your RSVP date earlier than you really need it, because it's more than likely that your guests will wait until the last minute or even later!

 

How Quickly Should We RSVP?

Within 24 hours. Yep, just one day! The same day you receive the invitation is best.That way you're least likely to forget or misplace the reply card. At the very least, please respond a long time before the requested date. Not doing so sends a signal that you’re waiting to make up your mind because the thought of their event doesn’t interest you.

 

Wow! That’s Fast! What’s the Hurry to RSVP?

A fast response signals that you’re excited to be included in the event!

Think of it like this. If I held up a $100 bill and asked whether you wanted it, I doubt you’d wait for two weeks (or forget entirely!) to let me know you wanted the money. Instead, you’d probably very quickly say something like, “Thanks! You’re the best!”

That’s the same enthusiasm and quickness that is much appreciated when responding to invitations.

Can I Wait Until The “RSVP By” Date to Respond? 

You can, but it’s kind of like showing up late for the party. Did you know that, 50 years ago, no one put “RSVP” on invitations! Why? Because it was considered really rude. 

 

Rude? Why Was It Rude to Ask People to RSVP?!  

Asking people to RSVP meant that hosts didn’t trust that people would do the right thing on their own without a special request from them. Sadly, times have changed, so sometime in the late 1960’s or early 1970’s, people started adding “RSVP” to their invitations as reminders because people had started not responding. Things in RSVP world have slid even further downhill, and now most requests list an “RSVP by” date because people are slow to, or just simply don’t, RSVP.

 

What If You Don’t Know Whether Your Schedule is Going to Allow You to Attend?

Go ahead and call or text the host to acknowledge the invitation the day you receive it. Then ask whether it would be an imposition if you waited to respond until you know your schedule. If you can explain what the event is that you’re waiting to hear about, go ahead and let them know. “My sister is flying in some time that week for a visit, and I don’t know the dates for sure. As soon as she books her flight, I’ll let you know.” If it’s of a more personal nature, of course, you don’t need to mention it.

What If They Don't Respond By The Date Provided? 

Give them a few days after your RSVP date, because we all have other things to do and simple RSVP responses might go right over our heads. However, if they don't respond 3 days after the date that you provide, give them a call or shoot them an e-mail or text. If they don't respond to your outreach, consider their response a "no." Hey, at least you tried!

It's always a good idea to include a few extra numbers for your catering company and venue. You never know if people might change their RSVPs, and if it's in your budget you should leave room for changes in the guest list.

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