(Closed) No RSVP and showing up with a date! Help!

posted 12 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 17
Member
236 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2009

I am sorry in advance if this sounds a bit snarky, because I really don’t mean it in that way. i feel for your sitaution, but have to say that I don’t think that this is a particularly Korean cultural thing. I have been a part of plenty of weddings where hordes of non-Koreans failed to RSVP and others with mainly Korean guests, where they were all aware and respectful of RSVPing. Sorry – I just feel like this is how negative stereotypes start and I see cultural/racial comments like this all the time on the boards and felt like I should say something.

I really feel like setting up an assigned seating situation will help. If people leave your ceremony, go to your reception and do not find an escort/table card they will have to leave. Perhaps you can have a few of your ushers help guests at the escort/table card table and politely let the people without a card that if they didn’t RSVP they don’t have a seat and will have to leave.

Good luck! 

Post # 19
Member
106 posts
Blushing bee

PLEASE do not turn invited guests, any guests, away at the reception….I can’t imagine how uncomfortable that would make me as an inivted guest; I think it would be horrendous for the guests who had not RSVPed and equally embarassing for those who had RSVPed to see that — it would not set the tone you want for your reception celebration.  This is not an opportunity to teach grown men and women an etiquette lesson; they’re your guests, presumably invited because you want them there.  Just call them, and, if you can’t call them, then assume 2/3 or so will show and have enough food and seats for them.  I would not do assigned seating, which would make the non-RSVPers feel unwelcome…..not the impression you want to give, even though you are frustrated with them.  Don’t let their slip-ups turn you into an impolite hostess.

Post # 20
Member
133 posts
Blushing bee

You do need to consider the cultural factors in play here (although Koreans certainly aren’t the only ethnic group in the world who aren’t accustomed to RSVPing). Without getting into a complete anthropological analysis of Asian/ Korean cultures, there is a whole extra layer of social debts and obligations going on that may not be obvious to someone raised outside of this culture.

Let’s say Mr. X invited your ILs to his daughter’s wedding 10 years ago, therefore he is owed an invitation. Mr. X doesn’t really want to attend your wedding but he doesn’t want to come right out and say "no" directly. If your ILs call him and put him on the spot by asking him to decide whether or not he wants to come, he has to say "yes" because otherwise he’s insulting your ILs.  From a saving face perspective, it’s better for him to passively not attend the wedding than give your ILs a direct refusal. 

I think it would be very humilitating for your ILs if some of the guests were turned away at the door for not RSVPing. I highly encourage you not to go there, because your ILs would feel like they have insulted half their community. I do think you need to use this worst-case-scenario possibility as leverage with your ILs.

Have your future husband talk to them and brainstorm ways to figure out how many people are going to come in the most culturally correct manner. My suggestions would be to have them send a letter in Korean to the non-responders saying "Oh this is an American style wedding and so different than what we are used to. Please use this postcard to let us know if you’re coming, otherwise we will assume not". Even so, I would plan for some extra meals and seats just in case.

Post # 21
Member
62 posts
Worker bee

speaking as a korean, i am SOOO not surprised that they didnt RSVP. i think its your inlaws responsbility to tell them they need to RSVP. it might mean calling up 50 ppl but its better to be thorough than have to stress the day-of. fortunately for us, my parents won’t be inviting any of their friends because i dont live in the same city as them…. that saved us a lot of $$. good luck though!!

Post # 23
Member
72 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: November 2019

I think you HAVE to call (or have your FI or parents in law call) or just plan for all 100 extras.  What if people that RSVPed show up a little late, and are turned away because all the chairs are filled by other people that did not RSVP? 

Post # 25
Member
133 posts
Blushing bee

Glad my comment was helpful. Good luck on the chat with your ILs and definately play up the worst-case-scenario of having to turn away some of their friends or not having enough meals. That might convince them that making the calls is not so bad afterall.

The topic ‘No RSVP and showing up with a date! Help!’ is closed to new replies.

Find Amazing Vendors