(Closed) Save the Date etiquette… small guest list, pre rsvp?

posted 7 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
90 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

I was going to do exactly that (we are having only 50 guests), but at the last minute I decided it was poor etiquette and took it off. But I really don’t know – maybe it is acceptable and I have just never heard of it before. I’d be interested to hear if people have done this as well.

Post # 4
1276 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

I just think it wouldn’t work because there will be a fair amount of people who won’t pre-rsvp. Just send out your invites early enough that when you get people who decline, you can send invitations to people on your B list. 

Post # 5
2104 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

I don’t think enough people will know this far ahead of time if they can get the time off work, etc.  Plus, there is always people who get sick at the last minute or have something come up or those that find a great last minute travel deal, so even if people RSVP’d this early, I wouldn’t trust that number.  Someone who declines now but finds a way to make it to the wedding by the time Sept rolls around won’t be expecting their invitation to be retracted.

Post # 6
4824 posts
Honey bee

Isnt that essentially the invitation then? and not a STD?

You may talk to people casually after its sent to see what their plans are in general. Some people know right away they cant go, but wait to tell you till they RSVP, but if you talk to them you can begin to get an idea of who may not come. 

Post # 7
46590 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Just make your RSVP date far enough ahead that you can extend invitations to someone else. I think most people know that none of us can invite everyone we would like to have attend our wedding.

I personally would not be offended to be on a B list.

Post # 8
3267 posts
Sugar bee

@alicialoveschase:  It is not polite to expect your guests to commit to something this far in advance.  You should not be expecting a reply from your guests until 6-8 weeks before. And a save the date isn’t a pre-invite, it is a heads up. 

Besides if you get a tentative no, and then you invite someone else in their place, what happens if the first persons schedule changes and they can then go?

It is also not polite to have or advertise a B list.

Post # 9
673 posts
Busy bee

I’m with @andielovesj on this. Not only are you effectively turning your Save-The-Date Cards into crazy early invitations with an informal RSVP expectation that’s out of the norm with what guests expect, but you’re also advertising the status of some kind of B list.

There are plenty of threads on whether A/B guest lists are offensive to folks or not, but I think many would accept that outright telling people there are lists is an etiquette no-no. By addressing the fact that not everyone can fit in your venue, you’re basically showing your cards that you want to replace guests if they can’t let you know about their attendance early enough.

So, yeah, I would suggest not including anything like that. You won’t know if people will attend or not until after your invitations go out. That’s unfortunate, but you should try to keep your guest list limited to what you can afford and fit into the venue. If you find you can have a B list and don’t think those people will be offended to find out they are on it, then you can make that call when you start to formally hear back from your first batch guests.

Post # 10
2414 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

I would only feel comfortable doing that if It were a destination wedding.

If I were you, I would send out the Save-The-Date Cards and then sent the invites out early and so you can invite others as soon as any “no” RSVPs roll in.

Post # 11
2105 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

What everyone else said.  I sent out Save-The-Date Cards in February for a September wedding.  I could never have expected guests to know if they were coming at that point.  We have a B-List, so we’ll send out the RSVPs in June with a RSVP by date as the last week of July/first week of August.

Post # 12
164 posts
Blushing bee

@alicialoveschase:  I did that.  I used an email invite system and obtained pre-rsvps. What I would suggest, is doing a “yes”, “no” and “maybe” option.

We had many out of town guests that would have NEVER been able to afford the trip, thus they knew far out that they were a “NO” and we had others that might have been able to make it work so they were a “maybe”.

Let me know if you want me to forward the invite!

Post # 13
3580 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

I am having a similar situation.

Our guest list is 100 but our capacity is 50 (and 60 miles from us so it’s mildly destination). We used a wedding website (and email announcement) as our STD. We have already had about 30% RSVP (in 4 days and our wedding is 5 months from now!) so we will send out something small at the end of the month as a hard copy invitation that says something similar to ‘due to the capacity of the venue, please let us know as soon as possible if you’re able to attend, preferably on or before May 10th’ as a confirmation of those RSVPs. We simply have to…I don’t have time or the energy to plan for flakes or party crashers…

The annoying ones are your besties and close family members who remind folks to RSVP…and then forget to do it themselves.

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