Situation Two: The Last
In situation one, all guests are treated equally. Everyone is receiving their invitations at the same time, and the wedding just happens to be coming up quickly.
In the second situation, youve already invited some or most of your guest list. Those guests have had a standard amount of time to save the date, make arrangements, find their outfits and plan to attend your wedding.
But then, youve got a second list of people. This is most often called the B list. Its the group of people who you werent sure if you were going to invite. This could be due to guest limitations, budget or maybe you even made some recent friends who you now want to include in your big day! Most often, though, you needed to know more information about the A-list before you committed to the B-list.
Inviting someone to a wedding last-minute.
Most people know that if your wedding has been planned for some time, and they receive an invite with just a few weeks to go, they probably werent on the original list. So, you dont need to pretend that they were.
However, just because someone didnt make the first round of invites, doesnt mean they arent just as important.
It often comes down to logistics. You only have so many seats you can fill. This is especially true if you planned your guest list during COVID and had stricter guest restrictions at the time of sending out invites.
Wording last-minute wedding invites.
Consider the following options when inviting these guests:
How Should I Reach Out
How you contact the guests who have yet to RSVP will depend on your relationship to them. For example, for close family relatives and friends whom you see on a regular basis, you might consider simply asking them in person. For distant relatives or friends who you dont speak to on the regular, a phone call, text, or email might yield the best response rate.
Social media is another great tool for reaching out to guests. However, be sure to avoid any group messages or posts that might reach friends or followers who did not get your original invite.
Generally, a phone call or quick email should do it. In the case of any of your parents friends, ask mom or dad to nudge as necessary.
What Should I Say
First, be polite. Remember that, while its frustrating on your end that they have yet to respond to your RSVP, they have things going on in their life that may be preventing them from being as on point as usual. Then, build your message, including some of these key components:
- Be sure to ask them how theyre doing.
- Let them knownicelythat the RSVP deadline passed and you still need a response.
- Emphasize how much you want them there to share in your special day.
- Wish them well and say thank you.
Ideally, they can give you a definitive answer right then. If for some reason, they cant, its up to your discretion how much longer you can wait for a yes or no. Dont forget that youll need a solid headcount to deliver to your vendors by a certain date to ensure that you not only have enough room but enough beverages, food, and supplies for each and every guest. For that reason, its also a good idea to go into your conversations prepared with a definitive deadline. If your guests dont get back to you by then, its time to move on with planning without them.
Try not to get too stressed out or down about RSVPs. Late responses are a super common wedding conundrumask just about any bride. Its not a reflection of you or your relationship or your big day. Dont lose sight over the most important aspect of the planning: The celebration is all about you and the love of your life.
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S To Responding To Someone Who Just Canceled On You At The Last Minute
I tend to take my commitments pretty seriously. When I say Im going to be somewhere, Im there. It could be a running date, a coffee meeting with someone in my network or just drinks with friends.
My infrequent cancelings due in large part to the fact that I try not to over-commit. It used to be fun to fill my calendar weeks in advancethat is, until the actual jam-packed week arrived, at which point, I would look at each day with impending dread as I stressed being over-tired, spent and terrible company. Planning was fun, following through wasnt. And so I learned to dial back.
My disinclination to cancel on people made it so that when I was canceled on, I saw red. What rude and inconsiderate person bails the day of?
That, I discovered, was the wrong way to look at it, and Im proud to say Ive taken a more understanding approach to this inevitable behavior due to, well, life, and now when I get that text, email or call, I deal with it much more rationally.
With that said, while I may not be seething or sending sharp replies, I do make an effort to express my disappointment and make note that my time is valuable. The next time someone bails on you, dont lose your cool or refuse to reschedule.
1. Consider What Might Be
2. Dont Take It Personally
3. Let It Go
When you put all of this together, it looks like this:
Yes You Should Still Send A Gift
Even if you are unable to make it, you should still send the couple a wedding gift. You could also offer to take them out to dinner after the wedding to celebrate the occasion with them.
But try not to feel too guilty about it as long as you handle the situation respectfully, the couple should understand.
Most couples can attest that their wedding day was more of a blur with all of the family and well-wishers there, Swann said. Their enjoyment of the day isnt necessarily hinged on you being there or not, so dont feel guilty about not attending. The most important thing you can do is let them know in advance so this way theyre not looking for you on the day of the wedding.
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Up To The Last Minute Guest
I was invited to a friends wedding yesterday.
Except only to the ceremony.And I was invited by a group message on Facebook.Oh, and did I mention that its on this weekend?
While I was not in the least offended at not being invited at all, as I know that shes planning a very small wedding, I find this kind of hasty, impersonal grab at a few extra last-minute guests rude at best and downright insulting at worst. 0812-12
If readers will notice, this story was submitted on Sunday, August 12. That means the OP received the online invitation on Saturday for a wedding held either later that same day or the following day.
Yes, it appears you and several others were last minute add-on guests. Makes you feel special, doesnt it?
A Wedding Etiquette Pro Told Me The Late Invites Weren’t A Problem But The Texting Was
Anne Chertoff, a wedding etiquette specialist in New York, told me most couples have an A and B list: The As are the people you don’t want to get married without, and the Bs are people you’d like to have there but not if it means they take away a seat for grandma.
As your RSVPs start trickling in, you’re supposed to reassess your count and start sending out B-list invites if it seems there will be room. The goal is to have all guests believe they’re A-listers. “You don’t want anyone to think they’re an after-thought.”
Texting an invitation doesn’t accomplish that. “I would never recommend someone text someone an invitation to a wedding unless everyone is getting a text,” Chertoff said, like in a case of a spontaneous post-city-hall wedding celebration.
Our approach didn’t follow protocol for two key reasons: First, we never really created a solid “B-list” at the beginning of wedding planning. Rather, we realized closer to the day which had been postponed for over a year that there were people we wanted as guests we’d become closer to, or wanted to become closer to, throughout the pandemic.
And second, by the time we were ready to invite them, the RSVP date on the invitation had passed. Plus, the physical invites were at my parent’s house in Wisconsin, and they were out of town.
Time was too tight to get real invitations in the mail and delivered. If we had, no one would have been fooled that they’d been on the A-list anyway.
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Group Guests By Relationship
Include everyone from the same group, i.e. all first cousins, every aunt and uncle, etc. Exceptions can be made if some live in a different country and you’ve never met, or haven’t met since you were children. You and your sweetheart can have different rules on each side, depending on the closeness and size of your family.
How Do I Excuse Myself For A Wedding
You can be honest very benevolently, Post says. And secondly, make sure youve got a good reason. You cant just blurt, I really dont want to come to your wedding, but its perfectly acceptable to say something along the lines of I looked into it and I cant afford to buy a ticket and fly out to California.
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Keep Groups Of Friends And Family Together
Similarly to the above recommendation, ensure that your B-list is kept secret by thinking about your social groups. If youre inviting one co-worker, you should invite the others at the same time. The same is true for groups of friends and families. If one person receives an invitation, its safe to assume the others will hear about it.
Why Are Rsvps For Weddings So Important
Your guests may not realize why you need to know if theyre coming or not. But many weddings operate on a per person basis. You need at least a close estimate of guest numbers to make a lot of decisions from the venue to the catering to the florist who will have to outfit the tables with centerpieces. You also cant properly create your wedding seating chart without a set tally of yeses and noes.
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And Make Sure Your Reason Is A Legitimate One
Life can definitely throw some curveballs that will make it impossible for you to attend the nuptials.
It could be work, sickness, a family emergency or unexpected budgetary constraints that would affect you getting there. Swann said.
But barring those reasons or ones of similar weight, you should really make every effort to be there if you already said youd attend. Dont back out because you decided to book a weekend getaway, attend another event or because youre worried you wont know anyone there.
Changing plans at the last minute for a better offer is not appropriate and can harm a relationship, Gottsman said.
How To Invite Your B
Trying to get the number of wedding guests absolutely right is a feat in and of itself. While most weddings have up to 85% of guests RSVPing yes, depending on your date and location, that number can certainly fluctuate. Having a B-list is a good way to ensure that your celebration is filled with family and friends, but it can be a little dicey if B-listers realize they werent first picks. Here are five tips for keeping things friendly when planning your B-list.
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What Are Your Priorities
I recommend starting by making a list of your wedding day priorities with your partner. My biggest piece of advice here is to make sure you really focus on what makes you two happy. Because you have limited time, you might need to make some compromises, but having a well-thought-out list of your last-minute wedding day must-haves will help you remember to focus on what really matters and not get caught up in minor details.
How Do You Send A Late Invitation
Just send the invitations ASAP and dont worry about explaining in a note. If asked later, you can just explain that youre sorry you got all the invitations out a little late. Just be on time with the invitations with your next wedding. If you do invite, just send the invitation NOW with no explanation.
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Let The Couple Know As Soon As You Can
First things first if you cannot attend, you need to let the couple know ASAP. Sooner is always better, especially because an accurate headcount is needed for items such as wedding rentals and food and beverage. Note that couples typically need to give a final guest count to the caterer a week or so before the nuptials, so if you back out at the last minute, theyll likely have to pay for your plate anyway.
As soon as you find out you have a conflict and it better be a legitimate one! contact the couple personally and apologize, giving a brief reason without going into too much detail, etiquette expert Diane Gottsman, author of Modern Etiquette for a Better Life and founder of The Protocol School of Texas, told HuffPost. I am so sorry I have to rescind my RSVP to your wedding. I have a work obligation that I cannot get out of that was not on my calendar when I responded with a yes.
Generally, its best to call the couple to let them know you wont be able to attend after all. However, if something arises the day before or the day of the wedding, the couple will be preoccupied so theyre probably not checking their phone or email. On such short notice, let someone close to the bride and/or groom know instead.
Is It Rude To Decline Wedding Invitation
We all know things come up, and like we mentioned, its okay to decline an invitation. But when explaining why you wont be there, use good judgment. If you cant attend because the wedding conflicts with a long scheduled appointment with a hard-to-book psychic, it might be better to decline without details.
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Make The Call About Children
Its entirely up to the couple whether or not children are invited to the wedding. Decide whether you want little ones there or would prefer an adults-only celebration, and then put your foot down. That means no exceptions.
Most caterers consider children guests under 12, so you can definitely skip your cousins teenage kids but still include your college besties toddlerjust make sure youre applying that age rule across the board. And if someone calls to ask if they can bring their kids along, let them know what youve decided, and stick to your guns.