Preparing for the big day typically comes with plenty of small details to attend to. From the flowers to the favors, there seems to be a never-ending list of decisions to make. One piece of the wedding puzzle that must be solved is the invitation! Whether you’re the one addressing the envelope or checking the “plus one” box, wedding RSVP etiquette is important for both parties from start to finish.

Wedding RSVP Etiquette for the Sender

opening envelope

Details, details, details! When it comes to weddings, the smallest things can make the biggest difference—especially when it comes to the invitations! The design, the information and the timing are all key pieces in setting the recipient to play their part in the RSVP process. Send your invitations out between six and ten weeks before the wedding to give guests a good amount of time to respond!

How to Address

When it comes to addressing your invitation, be sure to address it to the people you’d like to attend. If it’s an already-established couple, include both of their names so it’s clear who you’re inviting. Using something like “The Johnsons” could be interpreted as inviting the entire family—kids included!

What to Include

One of the most difficult parts of the invitation process is getting the RSVP’s back. When it’s your time to send invites out, make it as easy as possible for your guests to respond! Your RSVP cards should be easy to read, understand and fill out. Consider including the following:

  • Will attend/Will not attend options
  • Entree options
  • A spot to fill out a song request
  • RSVP due date (usually three to four weeks before the wedding)

After your guest has filled out their card, make it easy for them to send it your way! Include a pre-stamped, self addressed envelope to return their RSVPs.

When to Follow up

Surprisingly, it’s normal to have a few RSVPs that seem to have lost their way. Life gets busy and people can get distracted, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t excited for your big day! Wait a week until after the due date and then follow up with your guests. A friendly call to confirm their attendance or absence is necessary to get an accurate headcount for the final seating chart!

Wedding RSVP Etiquette for the Recipient

colorful wedding invitation

Receiving an invite in the mail can be pretty exciting—especially for a loved one’s special day! As a guest, make the soon-to-be married couple’s job a little bit easier by showing your very best wedding RSVP etiquette!

Mind the Number of Guests

When the envelope is addressed to you and your significant other, you two are the only two expected guests. If the invitation is only to you, you may have the option to bring a guest. Typically, there is a line for the invitee to add their guest’s name, but if not, take a moment to check in with the bride and groom to confirm.

Return Your RSVP in a Timely Fashion

Your RSVP plays a big part in their big day! Be sure to send it back as soon as you fill it out to ensure the engaged couple will have plenty of time to plan out their seating chart. With online invitations and pre-stamped, self-addressed envelopes, it’s so easy to RSVP quickly!

Let the Sender Know of Any Changes

Keep the couple in the loop if there are any major changes that will affect your attendance. If your plus one can no longer make it, do not simply invite another person in their place. Let the couple know before the actual day. Also, if you are unable to make it for some unforeseen reason, give the couple a heads up. It’s better to let them know ahead of time instead of not showing up!

Wedding RSVP Wording Ideas

tea and letters

The wording on your RSVP cards is a great way to let your personality as a couple shine!  Whether you’re going for modern or wistful and romantic, tie the language back to the theme of your wedding!

Simple Wedding RSVP Invitation Idea

RSVP Before ________

Name(s) ___________________________

_______ Will attend with pleasure

_______ Must decline with regret

_______ Number  attending

Wedding RSVP Invitation Wording With Entree Idea


Please respond by XX/XX/XXXX

____ Joyfully accepts

____ Regretfully declines

Kindly indicate your choice of entree

___ Chicken  ___ Filet Mignon ___ Vegetarian

5 Wedding RSVP Acceptance Wording Ideas

Encourage your guests to show off their excitement with one of these RSVP acceptance phrases!

  • Graciously accepts
  • Accepts with pleasure
  • Ready to drink, eat and watch you get married!
  • We would love to help you celebrate
  • Wouldn’t miss it

5 Wedding RSVP Decline Wording Ideas

Let your guests send their regrets with one of these simple, but meaningful phrases.

  • Respectfully declines
  • Will cheers from afar
  • Will be there in spirit
  • Sending best wishes
  • Can’t attend, but sending joy your way

couple with wedding invitation

Although seemingly small and simple, RSVPs can make a huge impact in the flow of wedding planning. For both the sender and the recipient, there are ways to make this process go a lot more smoothly. Sending pre-stamped envelopes and quickly returning your acceptance or denial are just a couple ways of showing proper wedding RSVP etiquette. Once that small detail is taken care of, all that’s left to do is pick out a wedding gift and celebrate!