RSVP meaning: Why It Matters on InvitationsRSVP meaning: Why It Matters on Invitations

RSVP meaning: Why It Matters on Invitations. There are a few dos and don’ts of replying to an invitation.

Hey guys! Life is packed with events. We spend hours planning awesome gatherings like birthday parties, weddings, reunions, graduations, retirement parties, anniversaries, and so much more. And guess what? Most invitations include an RSVP, which means the host wants to know if you’re coming or not. So, here are some helpful tips whether you’re sending out invitations or replying to them.

What does RSVP mean?

For more than seven decades, we have been officially RSVPing to events, weddings, and social gatherings. The first recorded use of RSVP was in 1953. RSVP is an abbreviation for the French phrase “répondez s’il vous plaît,” which translates to “respond please.” The official meaning of RSVP is “to respond to an invitation.”

What are RSVPs for?

RSVPs are a crucial tool for event planning, as they allow organizers to gather an accurate count of attendees. This information is vital for determining the necessary amount of space, food, and budget needed to successfully execute the event.

Types of RSVPs


Every time someone invites you, it’s considered an invitation. It can be either verbal, when they ask you to attend an event, or you can receive a written invitation.

Save the Date

Save the dates are sent to announce a wedding. They provide information about the wedding date, time, and location. If you receive one, you can assume that you will receive a formal invitation soon, so keep your schedule clear! Save the dates do not require an RSVP, so just wait for the formal invitation to arrive.

Digital RSVPs

This is perfect for less formal occasions like birthday parties and family get-togethers. With digital RSVPs, you can receive instant responses through text, email, or social media. Plus, the host can quickly see who’s coming, so they can plan the food and drinks well ahead of time.

Regrets Only

In some cases, invites may have a regrets-only RSVP, which means the event host only wants you to reply if you’re not coming. If you don’t reply to the RSVP, they will assume you will be in attendance and prepare accordingly.

How to respond to an RSVP

When you receive an invitation, it will usually provide instructions on how to RSVP. This could be as simple as a text or a card that you send back to the host. It’s important to reply promptly and if you’re uncertain about attending, it’s best to reach out and inform the event organizer.

When to send out an RSVP

For successful event planning, it’s important to consider the scale and size of the event when sending out invitations. To ensure ample time for RSVPs, it’s recommended to send out invitations 4-8 weeks in advance. For larger events like weddings, it’s advisable to extend the invitation timeline for up to 6 weeks. This allows guests approximately 3-6 weeks to confirm their attendance.

Tips For RSVPs

Please respond promptly to help the host effectively plan their event.

If you are unable to attend, don’t hesitate to decline. They will understand and appreciate you saving them from unnecessary expenses.

If the invitation specifies the names of the invitees, assume that only those individuals are invited.

Respect any guidelines provided for the event, such as guest limits, restrictions on children, or a specific dress code.

If you were not given a plus one, it is best not to ask for one.

When an invitation includes your name followed by “and family,” it signifies that you, your significant other, and immediate family members are invited.

Avoid bringing your entire group of friends simply because you have the option to list additional guests on the RSVP.

Whether you initially declined and can now attend, or had accepted the RSVP but are now unable to go, communicate with the host to find a suitable solution.

If someone fails to respond to an invitation, it is appropriate for the host to reach out and confirm their attendance.

Regardless of your ability to attend, always express gratitude to the hosts for extending an invitation.

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By Shani

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