Friday, April 1, 2016

How do I specify the number of guests invited on an invitation?

So you're having a party, and the seating is limited.  How do you prevent a guest from adding an uninvited +1?  Here are a few tips:

Address the envelope properly. 
If a single person is being invited with a guest, the words "and Guest" should appear on the outside envelope.  If a couple is being invited with their children, include the words "and family" on the outside envelope.  If only some children are invited (such as older children), be sure to include their first names on outside envelope (Mr. and Mrs. John Smith and Sam).  The lack of "and Guest" and "and Family" implies that no extra guests are included.

Include an inner envelope.
While some will consider it a waste of paper and money, a formal invitation commonly includes another envelope once you open the outside envelope (common with wedding invitations).  If you include an inner envelope in your invitation set, you should print/write the name of each person being invited (first names only) on the front of this envelope.  

Tell them exactly how many are invited.
The best option, to avoid any misunderstanding, is to include the number invited directly on the invitation or RSVP card.  Simply have your invitations/cards printed with a fill-in-the-blank blurb (allowing you to write in the number attending):

We have reserved ____ seats in your honor.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Green Wedding - Plantable Wedding Invitations

If you are trying to reduce your impact on the earth while planning your wedding, you should check out the video below.  Send your guests invitations that they can plant.  And if you use telephone RSVP by RSVP Services, there will be ZERO waste.

Find plantable invitations on Amazon.  The invitation in the video above is available here.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Wedding Registry - How Do I Ask My Guests For Cash?

For many engaged couples today, the tradition of registering for gifts isn't as ideal as it once was.  As people marry at a later age, many of us have all the household items an engaged couple would typically register for.  This leads most of us wanting to ask for cold-hard-cash - but how do you do this without appearing rude?

Well, the short answer is, you don't.  While many of your guests won't mind giving you a monetary gift, some will think it's rude for you to have asked.  Here are a few recommendations on how to accomplish this without offending too many of your guests.

  1. The most tasteful way to register for Cash is to simply register for gift cards (it's just as good as cash if it's for a store that you like).  Provide your guests with a list of your favorite stores on your rsvp website.  You can even setup a registry on the store's website (if they offer it), and add different denominations of gift cards to the registry.
  2. Use a honeymoon funding website to collect cash from your guests.  There are many of them out there, but one example is  You add different things that you want guests to purchase towards your honey moon.  And the money they spend will ultimately end up as cash in your pocket (minus a small fee).  You can chose to spend it on your honeymoon, or on something else entirely.

    There are other websites that use a similar methods of collecting cash, without incorporating your honeymoon. Check out to register for anything.
  3. Register on  While it's not cash, Amazon has just about everything you could ever want, and now they have a gift registry.
    Visit the Amazon Gift Registry Homepage
  4. If you want to directly ask for cash, we recommend adding a poem to your website to at least address it in a creative way.  Here are a few examples of poems to add to your RSVP website:

If you were thinking of giving a gift to help us on our way,

A gift of money in a card would really make our day!

We made a commitment, some time ago,
Together through life, we were destined to go.
To save you looking, shopping and buying,
Here is an idea, we hope you’ll like trying!
Come to our wedding, to wish us both well,
And please make a donation to our wishing well.
Our life together has already begun
And we almost have everything under the sun
So we both thought we would make a suggestion
To save you from all the searching and guessing
Instead of spending lots and lots
Just put some money with your card
And place it into our Moneybox
Large amounts are not anticipated
Any amount would be appreciated
Now that we have saved you all the fuss
We can’t wait for you to celebrate with us!
Now we are to be Mr & Mrs
We don’t need a wedding list of dishes
We have two kettles, two toasters, two microwaves
And we have dreams for which we have to save.
If you would like to give us a gift
A cheque or vouchers would give us a lift
We like to think of it as our ‘Wishing Well’
Which will be filled with your love, we can tell!
We’ve lived together for quite a while,
With all our pots and pans,
And as we don’t need homely gifts,
We have another plan!
We know it’s not traditional,
But it’s easier that’s for sure,
To have no wedding list at all,
Your attendance means much more!
For those of you who do insist,
We have a savings pot,
A small gift to add to this,
Would really mean a lot!
We’ve been together for a few years now;
We have pots and pans and linen and towels;
We have glasses and toasters, really quite a few;
So instead of more gifts, we suggest this to you;
If it doesn’t offend and it won’t send you running;
What we would really appreciate is quite simply money;
We know choosing gifts can be such a pain;
And this way there is no chance of bringing the same!
We don’t want to offend but we have it all,
All household goods and so much more.
To save you shopping, sit back and rest,
A gift of currency is our request.
Don’t go overboard or rob any banks,
Any little thing will make us smile with thanks.
We supply the wishing well,
No wrapping, an envelope who can tell.
Now that we have saved you all the fuss,
We’d love it if you would come and celebrate with us!
We haven’t got a gift list for all of you to see,
because as you all know we never can agree!
But if you’d like to help us start our married life,
cash or high street vouchers, would save a lot of strife!
More than just kisses so far we’ve shared,
Our home has been made with love and care,
Most things we need we’ve already got,
And in our home we can’t fit a lot!
A wishing well we thought would be great,
(But only if you wish to participate),
A gift of money is placed in the well,
Then make a wish …. but shhh don’t tell!
Once we’ve replaced the old with the new,
We can look back and say it was thanks to you!
And in return for your kindness, we’re sure,
That one day soon you will get what you wished for.
So what do you get
For the bride and groom
Whose house needs things
In every room?
When shopping for a present
Please don’t be rash
As there is always the option
To just give cash!
We hope you don’t find
Our request to be funny
But we really would appreciate
A gift of money
You’ll find more honeymoon poems.
We know it’s traditional to write a list
But in this case there is a slight twist
Our home is complete with the usual stuff
And the things that we have are good enough
Our dream is to honeymoon in a foreign land
And walk along the beach hand in hand
We hope you don’t think of us as being rude
And that our request is not misconstrued
But a contribution to our honeymoon pot
Would be appreciated such a lot
But the most important thing to say
Is that you are there to celebrate our day!
We are sending out this invitation
In hope you will join a celebration
But if a gift is your intention
May we take this opportunity to mention
We have already got a kettle and toaster
crockery, dinner mats and matching coasters
So rather than something we’ve already got
We would appreciate money for our honeymoon pot
But most importantly we request
That you come to our wedding as our guest.
You’re invited to our wedding, when we both say ‘I Do’
And as you know we’ve been ‘I do’-ing for at least a year or two!
We’ve been together many years, and have a lovely home,
There’s not that many items we don’t already own.
So if your thoughts were on a gift, your presence will suffice;
But if you really feel the need, donations to a honeymoon would be really nice!
The choice is really up to you and we’d just like to say;
That most of all, we hope you come, enjoy yourselves, and have a lovely day!
We do not have a gifting list
Our house is set with nothing missed
We’d like to go on honeymoon
A place for us as bride and groom
We’re asking for a cash donation
To send us to our dream location

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

How much time should I give my wedding guests to RSVP?

When determining how long in advance you should send out your invitations, and how much time you should give your invitees to respond, there are a few factors you want to consider.

  1. Are you having a destination wedding?
  2. Will a large number of your guests be traveling from out-of-town?

If you are having a destination wedding, we highly recommend that you mail out a save-the-date card 6-8 months before your wedding.  This will give your guests a "heads-up" to start making travel plans for your wedding.  We recommend that the invitation itself be mailed out 12 weeks before the wedding.

If a large number of your guests are traveling from out-of-town,  it's also a good idea to send out a save-the-date card.  We recommend that you send out your formal invitation no less than 10 weeks before you wedding.

If most of your guests are not traveling from out-of-town, we recommend that you send out your formal invitation 8 weeks before your wedding.

The RSVP deadline should be chosen based upon the requirements of your caterer or venue.  Most caterers will want a final head-count about 2 weeks before your wedding.  We recommend that you print a "reply-by" date on your invitations that is 1 week before the date your caterer needs the final count.  This will give you a week to track down any unconfirmed guests, which you should expect.  If RSVP Services is calling your unconfirmed guests for you, 1 week is the time it will take to reach everyone.

Monday, December 28, 2015

What does RSVP mean, and do I have to respond?

Répondez s'il vous plaît, or R.S.V.P., is a French phrase that simply means "Please Reply".  While many of your  guests may forget to respond for a number of reasons, using the initialism R.S.V.P. implies that you want a response - whether it's a confirmation or a regret.

If you don't need a response from un-attending guests, simply add "regrets only" after your RSVP instructions.

If you don't want to worry about tracking down unconfirmed guests, we recommend you use a telephone reservation service for your RSVPs.  RSVP Services provides an outbound calling feature to remind unconfirmed guests to RSVP.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

How much food do I need per guest when catering my own wedding?

Having the right amount of food for your self-catered wedding can be tricky - you don't want to overspend and have too much food left-over, but you also want to make sure you have enough food to keep all of your guests full and happy.

Here is our recommendation of how much food you should prepare for each person attending your wedding or reception.  Keep in mind that you will always want to order a few extra plates in case any of your unconfirmed guests decide to show up.  You can always adjust this number based upon the number of guests who didn't RSVP and who you know won't be in attendance.


If you don't plan to serve dinner within the first hour of your reception, we recommend that you have some finger foods or appetizers available to help hold your guests over as they wait.  Here are some examples of how many appetizers you should have prepared:

  • 40 pieces of vegetables with 1 pint of dip, 2 ounces of cheese, and 1/2 lbs. of crackers per 10 guests.
  • you should serve dinner 30 minutes to 1 hour after you first begin to server appetizers. 

The Main Course

When preparing the main course, you should include at minimum of one main entree and 2 side dishes for each guest attending your wedding.  It is also recommended that you server a salad with bread at the beginning of the meal.  If you serve appetizers before the main meal, you can serve smaller portions for the main course - appetizers tend to be less expensive so having your guests fill up on appetizers will lower your main catering costs.

You should serve the following portions to each guest:
Main entree (meats) – 6-8 ounce serving
Side Dishes – 4-6 ounces per person for 3 side dishes
1 side salad
Non alcoholic beverages - 16oz per person


While it may be the sweetest part of the meal, many of your guests will skip this course.  If you are serving cake, we recommend you have enough for every guest (even though many of them won't eat any).  The difference in cost between a cake for 100 and 150 people is pretty minimal, and many of your guests will enjoy the option to take home an extra slice.  Here is how much cake you should have on hand if you want to have a slice available for everyone:

Cake:  2.3-3 oz. per person

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

6 Ways To Word Your Wedding Invitations

There are 100's of ways you can word your wedding invitation. Here are a few quick examples of different ways you can make your big announcement.

Here are a few traditional examples:

Mrs. and Mrs. David Williams Are Pleased to Announce the Marriage of Their Daughter

Rebecca Marie To David Lee Richards

Son of
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Richards

On The Fourth of April, Two Thousand and Thirteen at Seven O’clock in the Evening United Church of Christ 15 S Ft Thomas Avenue Fort Thomas, Kentucky The honor of your reply is requested by the first day of May, two thousand and sixteen 1-888-902-3011 x.1001 or
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Griggs Have The Honor of Announcing The Marriage of Their Daughter Kaitlyn Marie Griggs To Brian Lawrence Calhoun Son of Mr. David Calhoun and Ms. Terry Dunn On Saturday, The Second day of January Two Thousand and Thirteen at Half Past Six O’clock in the Evening St. Peters Cathedral
325 W 8th Street Cincinnati, Ohio
The honor of your reply is requested by the first day of May, two thousand and sixteen 1-888-902-3011 x.1001 or


Mr. and Mrs. David Johnson
invite you to celebrate the marriage of their daughter

Jennifer Emma
Michael Thomas Perry Jr.

Son of Mr. and Mrs. Michael Perry Thompson Sr.

The Fifteenth Day of September
Two Thousand and Thirteen
at Seven O’Clock in the Evening

St. Peters Cathedral
325 W 8th Street Cincinnati, Ohio
The honor of your reply is requested by the first day of May, two thousand and sixteen 1-888-902-3011 x.1001 or

Here are a few examples for couples who are paying for their own wedding, or who simply don't want to deal with the complexities of who's names to include:
Together with our families, we Nicole Kathleen Duke and Patrick Harris Roth Request the honor of your presence as we are joined in marriage Friday, the twenty-sixth day of March Two thousand and thirteen at half past five o’clock in the evening
United Church of Christ 15 S Ft Thomas Avenue Fort Thomas, Kentucky The honor of your reply is requested by the first day of May, two thousand and sixteen 1-888-902-3011 x.1001 or


Lori Lee Hampton And Jason Perry Baker Together With Our Parents Invite you to Share The Beginning of our new life together When we exchange marriage vows Saturday, The Twelfth of September Two-Thousand and Thirteen at Half Past Six O’clock in the Evening
St. Peters Cathedral
325 W 8th Street Cincinnati, Ohio
The honor of your reply is requested by the first day of May, two thousand and sixteen 1-888-902-3011 x.1001 or

Alexandra Dee Jones and Douglas Alfred Gastright Request the honor of your presence at the celebration of their marriage Saturday, the fourteenth of May Two Thousand and Thirteen at half past six o’clock in the evening

United Church of Christ 15 S Ft Thomas Avenue Fort Thomas, Kentucky The honor of your reply is requested by the first day of May, two thousand and sixteen 1-888-902-3011 x.1001 or