Rounding up RSVPs: How to manage guests who don’t reply

Ask any bride how her wedding planning is going with a few weeks to go, and you’re guaranteed to hear a rant of some sort on guests, and RSVPing – or the lack thereof! Rounding up RSVPs from slack guests is a rite of passage from frustrated couples (unfortunately!).  Today we’ve got some tips listed on how to chase your guests, including a copy & paste email template that won’t ruffle anyone’s feathers.

Why aren’t my guests RSVPing?!

When your guests haven’t RSVPed, it could’ve been for any number of reasons:

  • You didn’t give clear, specific instructions on how to RSVP and when by
  • Your guest(s) have to say no, and are procrastinating (because giving people bad news sucks)
  • The RSVP date is too far out, and guests are waiting on rosters, flight sales, lotto wins… etc!

There’s not a lot you can do about it… unless you haven’t sent your wedding invitations yet (and if that’s the case, read this post for advice on setting your RSVP date).

As tempting as it is to spitefully leave them off the seating plan and pointedly mention they didn’t actually say they were coming…. don’t.

how to deal with late rsvps

Rounding up RSVPs – how to chase guests who are late to respond

Here’s how to handle the stragglers with dignity and grace:

1. Remember they genuinely may have RSVPed – and the card is lost in the mail (bad) or lost in your house (worse!).  Keeping this in mind should help with any bitter resentment seeping out 😉

2. Divide and conquer. If there’s a lot of them, consider enlisting your Mum, your fiancé, and maybe your bridesmaids to chase them up. That makes step three less daunting…

3. Give them a call. “Hey Aunty Helen! Can’t believe the big day is in two weeks! Are you able to make it?” Some guests will be shy about saying no directly – they might be worried you’ll expect an explanation.

Remember too, they don’t need to tell you why they can’t make it. If they say no, they say no. You don’t know what could be going on with them – maybe they can’t afford to buy a new outfit, gift and petrol to attend. Maybe they have been meaning to send the RSVP in, but their car broke down/their cat is sick/it’s raining and my hair will get wet.

4. The Follow up. If you had to leave a message, or they had to get back to you – chase them up. If you are too busy for a phone call, send out a blanket email (use the BCC function) and remind them firmly (but politely):

“Hey everyone, I really need to get numbers from our wedding guests ASAP – got to keep the caterers happy! If we haven’t heard from you by Monday, I’ll have to assume you can’t make it. Looking forward to catching up at a later date. Love, The Nearlyweds”.

If this is handled well, it saves both parties embarrassment – maybe they are feeling awful about not attending and are trying the “if I ignore it, it’ll go away” trick!

Any other RSVP tips peps? Please share below.

3 thoughts on “Rounding up RSVPs: How to manage guests who don’t reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.