Planning your wedding takes a while, and it involves sending out invitations to your friends and relatives who you want to come to the wedding. What happens when a guest or several are no-shows on the wedding day? How are you supposed to react?
These are some of the questions the bride and groom might ask themselves if you promise to attend and fail.
We discuss how best to react when someone RSVPs and does not show up for a wedding, together with how you should talk to the couple in case of missing their wedding. At least both sides would be covered to avoid any bad blood moving forward.
Do Not RSVP ‘Yes’ to a Wedding and No-Show
Wedding planning is not just about the centerpieces, vases, and other decorations. It involves being sure that your friends and relatives will be there for you too during the biggest day of your life. That is why it is often considered rude when you RSVP yes and do not show up.
Some might think that not showing up makes the couple organizing the wedding mad because they spent so many resources organizing for their space. Actually, it is more than that. For some, it feels like their friendship does not matter to you, and some might hold a grudge against you for a while.
We can also see that there can be wastage at the wedding day when you do not show up. Imagine if 30 people RSVP yes and do not come. That would be food meant for 30 people wasted. Now you have to look for somewhere to give the food. You can donate, but sometimes it feels like your efforts were not recognized.
Sometimes the guest does not intend to RSVP and misses the wedding day. Here are a few tips to prevent your guests from RSVPing and missing the wedding party.
- Ensure the invitations are sent early. Do not wait until you only have a few days, then send the invitation. People often need weeks of notice to plan for the event. Give your guests an RSVP deadline of 4 weeks just to be on the safe side.
- How you invite people with the invitation wording is also important. We recommend you choose your words carefully to further make people interested in the event. You can consider telling them about any special performances that other people attend and other key highlights. At least you would spark the right attention and make someone show up.
- Look at the history of the guest’s past behavior. If someone has RSVP recently and was a no-show, do not be so inclined to expect them to show up for this event. When you are less eager about them coming, then it will not be disappointing when they are no-shows.
What Should You Do If You Can’t Attend An Event?
People think when you get an invite to a wedding, it is a must to attend. However, that is not always going to happen. It is possible to decline an invitation politely rather than confirm your attendance and end up as a no-show guest.
What are the reasons for declining an invitation?
Before we look at how to decline a wedding invitation politely, here are reasons why you might not be attending.
- If it is a destination wedding, meaning it is far from where you are, it means you need money to spend on flights to get there. If you do not have the finances, it is okay to decline the invitation and not strain yourself so much.
- Sometimes you may have scheduling conflicts. The worst can be when you have been invited to two or more weddings around the same date. It becomes hard to attend all of them even if they are not on the same wedding day. An example is fall, when you can be busy at work and still get wedding invitations.
- Some people may also be emotional about the wedding. You could have a relationship with the bride or groom but remained friends after breaking up. Being invited to their wedding can be overwhelming to a person. So, it is okay to decline the invitation on the wedding day.
There can be many other reasons why you would decline a wedding invitation. Whichever the case, you should always focus on delivering the right message when declining the invitation to the event. Here are key rules to keep in mind.
- If you are not close to the couple, then it is easier. You do not need to explain a lot. Make sure you wish them well on the RSVP card and tell them you will not attend for a certain reason.
- Things get messier when you are close to the couple. However, consider calling them in person rather than being a no-show to express your regret for not attending. Let them know that at least your care and still wish them happiness in their new married life.
- It is ideal to RSVP early so that it helps with planning. Some might RSVP just a few days to the wedding day, which can lead to confusion. Doing it early would help in proper planning in case you are not attending.
- Now that you declined the invitation, you could still send a gift. This shows at least you are happy about their union and grateful for them considering you to attend on their wedding day.
- You could still be part of the other events surrounding the wedding. We are talking of the bridal shower or the bachelorette party. You can always find a way to contribute to such events now that you may not be attending the wedding.
How Can Couples Best Deal With No-Shows During the Wedding Day
Just because someone did not show up on your wedding day does not mean they do not care. Approaching such no-shows carefully, probably after the wedding day. Here are a few things to consider.
- One of the biggest reasons someone might miss the wedding day is because they had no way of communicating back to you. You should have a contact person who handles the RSVPs to ensure the message is well received and in good time.
- You should always be prepared to make a few adjustments if someone does not show up. This means the wedding planner can quickly rearrange the empty seats so that it does not seem so obvious someone is missing.
- You never have to worry so much about those not attending. Focus more on those who are there celebrating the wedding with you. Sometimes things can happen out of their control, making the guests miss an event. This does not mean you get anxious while you should be happy on your wedding day.
- You can reach out later to understand why someone missed the event. They could be in a serious situation when you think they just blew off your wedding. An example is when someone was sick or got into an accident.
- If you get a gift from a guest who did not attend, just accept it and say thanks. At least they had you in mind still on your wedding day.
Understandably, you may be disappointed that someone RSVP and still managed not to show up for the wedding. This should not keep you from having a good time during your wedding. Focus more on the present guests and generally have a good wedding. Reach out to the guests who did not attend the wedding to find out more. Just make sure you are polite while doing so.