RSVP Nightmares: Avoiding the Hassle in a Modern World


Image: Monumental Designs

Probably one of the most daunting tasks for couples is the management of their guest lists and all of the time and energy that comes along with tracking RSVP’s, creating seating charts, and then relaying all of that information to vendors. Imagine cramming all of those to-do’s into the week of your wedding because you kept putting them off (let’s be honest out of all things wedding planning this is NOT the thing you get excited about doing). Check out some of our helpful hints for making the RSVP process run smoother by staying organized, hitting deadlines, and actually getting guests to respond:

1. It all starts with you: While save-the-dates are sent out earlier, invitations should be sent out 8 weeks prior to the wedding. Any earlier and guests will forget to respond, any later you’ll be rushing to get your final headcount to your vendors, which is typically expected three weeks prior to the big day.

2. Give them all of the info, in the most convenient way: With technology being an integral part of our lives, online RSVP’s are becoming more and more popular. Just because you have a traditional invitation, doesn’t mean you can’t politely ask your guests to respond online. Not only is this easier for guests and way more likely to get more responses, faster, it is also a great way to track everything from plus-ones to dinner choices without having to manually input the information into an excel spreadsheet. Online platforms such as Eventbrite have their own page for event management that can help you immensely. PRO TIP: Older guests like Aunt Sally might not be as technologically savvy, so it may be wise to include a response card in her invitation, just to give her the option.


Image: Stephanie Tara Stationery

3. The ball is in their court: Make sure there is no confusion and give your guests a response deadline of three weeks prior to the wedding. Two weeks after invitations are sent out, you should expect to receive a large influx of responses.

4. When they only had one job: Even with the deadline and added convenience, some guests will still just not get the memo and not respond on time. For the guests that need a little extra nudge, try sending a Google Calendar reminder to your younger guests, and a polite phone call to others. If you feel your guest may be uncomfortable about telling you they can’t come to the wedding, a great way to ease the pressure is to ask a family member to make some of the calls for you. This gives your loved ones who want to chip in a wonderful opportunity to do so.



Image: Ciara O’Doherty

5. When you really don’t want to: If the thought of all this makes you want to fly to Mexico and elope, no worries! That is what wedding planners are for 🙂 Especially when you need to know entrée choices or guest accommodations, it is way easier to leave it to the professionals. Your planner can track everything in a very efficient way, but also relay the information to all other interested parties, such as your caterer, rental company, and venue. We got your back!

As weddings are becoming ever-more elaborate, taking the time to implement these few suggestions can lift a huge burden and make you love the wedding-planning process as much as we do!