As spring is upon us, people are often looking forward to coming out to business events, parties, and weddings in the aftermath of Covid. As part of the event, the first part that frequently sets the tone of the occasion is the invitation. Wording, designing, printing and mailing invitations are an important element of hosting an event.

Today, we find the expense of these affairs is substantial in monetary cost and planning time invested.  With all this in mind, an important part of the event, is the written invitation. If it is a more causal event, an online invitation may be acceptable.  And as always, an important part of the invite written or online, is the please reply request.

Today, I often hear stories of people showing up without replying, replying too close to the time of the event, or replying and then not showing.

Do you know when to reply and why a reply is necessary?

The reply request information is an important part of the invite. A timely reply allows the host to properly plan for a successful event by ensuring that the proper food, beverages and room requirements are met. Most venues charge per person whether the person attends or not, so it is important to get an accurate count.

The reply is usually located on the bottom left of the invitation and is typically called the R.S.V.P.  French for “ré·pon·dez s’il vous plait”, it translates to “please reply”.   There is typically a reply-by date.

Not responding to an invitation ….is considered impolite. Whether you plan on attending or not, invitations should be replied to within one week of receipt.  Once we commit to being there, we should attend unless there is an unexpected emergency, as now the host is paying for our presence.  If there is an emergency, you should let the host know as soon as possible.

Although easy to overlook, we need to make sure we pay attention to this small, but important and considerate act of social and professional courtesy and do our part to ensure a successful event for the host and the guests.