what to do if guests don't RSVP but show up anyway????
Our RSVP date is coming up this week but we have only received about 75% of our RSVP cards. We want to wait another week or so for late comers, then we want to use the available seats to invite other guests that we wanted to invite but were obligated to invite other family instead (you know how that goes). So now here is the dilemma...what do we do if we have some very rude "intruders" who decide to show up even though they haven't submitted an RSVP? Or what of they show up with kids even though our RSVP clearly says" ADULT ONLY"? Is it rude to make them pay for their own seat/place setting/dinner or should we suck it up that we have to fork over the extra cash for them in all of their rudeness?

Married: 06/20/2009
Reviews: 9
Posted On: May 11, 2009 at 8:17 AM • Vendors are allowed • Add to My WatchlistFlag As Inappropriate1 like

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Married: 05/15/2009
Reviews: 7
May 11, 2009 at 8:35 AM • Flag As Inappropriate
This topic drives me nuts! Like everyone else on here we had this very same issue. We called each and every person that did not respond by the deadline, think we waited 2 days after, and made them give us a very final yes or no. WE made it clear in a polite way that the venue is so limited in space that they can't accommodate anyone if we haven't given their meal choice so we want to make your sure your meal is waiting for you! You can do it nicely but firmly. I even went a step further. I got the list of who was staying at our hotel room block and the people that I knew needed a room that weren't on the list also got a call from me. I wanted to be sure they weren't bailing at the last second and I'd have an empty seat I paid for. Of course I phrased it as concern for their accommodations not that I was checking up. Shame that we have to chase adults like babies. If I had anyone show up with kids they would be told to go to the sitter I have at the hotel. SORRY! They were told ahead

Married: 05/23/2009
Reviews: 6
May 11, 2009 at 10:02 AM • Flag As Inappropriate
My good friend and bridesmaid told me that she invited about 108 people and 141 people showed up to the reception. There were people there that she didn't invite as well as people that RSVP'd not coming and they still showed up! She told them that there wasn't enough food or seating so good luck.
I still have plenty of people that have not RSVP'd and my fiance told me that if they show up, they aren't allowed in. I don't know if I'm just a plan ahead kind of person but if I get an RSVP in the mail, I try to send it back as soon as possible.

Married: 10/17/2009
Reviews: 7
May 11, 2009 at 10:29 AM • Flag As Inappropriate
If you have created a assigned seating, I saw an idea on one of those wedding shows that I loved. It really only works if you have a seating chart though. They had someone at the table where everyones place cards were to help with finding names, if someone came up whos name was not on the cards they asked them to wait a moment and went and asked the bride or mother of the bride if this person was just overlooked. If it turned out that the RSVP had not been recieved then they came back to those non rsvp'rs and told them that unfortuatly their RSVP had not been recieved and dinner arrangements had not been made for them. If they would like to wait and see if someone doesnt show up, they could attend the dinner but if everyone who RSVP'd arrives they are still welcome to stay for the party after dinner. It seemed to work well on the wedding show I was watching. The couple who didnt RSVP just sat at the bar in the hotel lounge until dinner was done then joined in for the rest.

Married: 05/15/2010
Reviews: 7
May 11, 2009 at 11:28 AM • Flag As Inappropriate
I'm 100% for not letting them in/kicking them out. If I went through the effort to pay for and send out invites, then I called you asking for your RSVP but you STILL don't respond but you STILL show up that is the rudest thing ever. Honestly, that's one of those things that may cause me to go a little bridezilla, so I would have my coordinator take care of it. Do you have someone who will be watching over the seating cards (assuming you have them). Make a couple lists for that person: people who RSVPd yes and their seating, people who didn't RSVP, and if you need it people who are by no circumstance allowed into your wedding. You could rank the people who didn't RSVP in the order of who is most important to you that they attend. If other people get upset because you are letting people in who were in line after them, tell them they should have thought of that before they decided NOT to RSVP

Married: 07/25/2009
May 12, 2009 at 1:50 AM • Flag As Inappropriate
oh wow..this really is something that I am not looking forward to. My deadline has not approched yet but I know that I am going to be calling people that don't RSVP to see if they have forgotten or not coming.

Married: 08/01/2009
May 12, 2009 at 8:19 AM • Flag As Inappropriate
I feel your pain. My RSVP date is also coming up in about 2 weeks and i have only heard from 4 people and those 4 people invited other people!!!! I am planning to call people at the end of this week and be firm ( as politely as i possibly can ... i have a tendancy to be blunt and extreamly straight forward so this may be harder then it sounds ) .. i am going to tell them they have a week left and if i don't hear from them i am not going to order food to acomidate for them. I think people are rude when they don't RSVP in the time given and i have no reservations about telling them so. I am so overwhelmed and stressed by the planning proccess as it is and this is supposed to be a special day for those of us getting married that they should be considerate of this. I am having my event catered in a buffet style and my plan is to look at the amount of people who are coming then add 10 extra plates to that number this way i know there will be plenty of food...Good luck and God bless!
May 12, 2009 at 10:55 AM • Flag As Inappropriate
I have to say I did the same thing at my wedding that the girl in the first post did (I think her name is Laura) and it went great. We had only like 2 extras show up and we were able to even fill a couple of last minute cancels with people who wanted to come. Everyone was very understanding. We had no kids and limited seating as well. Phone call and follows up are good for your sanity and the pocketbook as well. Now as a wedding photographer I suggest this to all my brides on a budget or limited space and it usually has great results. Good Luck & Congratulations!

Married: 07/31/2010
Reviews: 6
May 12, 2009 at 2:45 PM • Flag As Inappropriate
One thing you should do is after you wait your extra week for the late-arriving RSVPs in the mail, proactively CALL the guests who have not replied. You call them and say you need a final count for the venue or caterer or whatver. That should get a final answer to you, and leave you plenty of time to invite the other guests!

Married: 09/26/2009
Reviews: 1
May 12, 2009 at 2:55 PM • Flag As Inappropriate
Now I'm worried. If Karma is true then i'm in trouble I am HORRIBLE about RSVP's I wait til the last minute or later. I am in BIG trouble remind me of this when I'm complaining in Sept. The only thing I can suggest it call and get a straight answer from the people.

Married: 09/19/2009
Reviews: 11
May 13, 2009 at 3:13 AM • Flag As Inappropriate
I know im going to have this problem also My fh family never rsvp's to anything! On our son's 1st birthday invite I asked for an rsvp one week before the park and no one called! So if they cant for the birthday party who knows for the wedding! Im doing the if you dont respond you;ll have no where to seat im seating my guest to assigned seats and having the ushers user them to their table then they can look for their name at the table.

Married: 08/08/2009
May 13, 2009 at 12:32 PM • Flag As Inappropriate
I agree with CelticChic. I would let the person up front tell them that because they did not RSVP they could wait to see if any seats open up. Otherwise they could wait until after dinner and join us. However, I know my family, they would cause a scene or would storm out angry. I am not looking forward to this. Our wedding in on August 8th 2009. We just sent out our invitations and the deadline will be approaching at the end of June to RSVP (just to give us a little time to deal with non or late RSVPers).

Married: 07/17/2010
May 13, 2009 at 1:29 PM • Flag As Inappropriate
WOW- I see I am going to be going nuts - My RSVP deadline is a ways away at this time - but I think that your deadline date is just that the deadline- I would call and try to confirm whether they coming or not - if not I would put someone else in there place. And as far as people that just show up - they can just go back where the came from - a wedding is not just a party - this is the reason for head counts

Married: 07/24/2010
May 13, 2009 at 4:08 PM • Flag As Inappropriate
You should call the people who haven't RSVP'd and ask them if they will be coming and if not that is ok, you just need to have a head count for the caterers....this way if they say no they won't be able to make it you know you can invite the other guests on your B list. If the guest that says they will not be able to make it shows up at the wedding, you could do 1 of 2 things.....depending on your budget you could pay for them and if budget is too tight have them pay since they said they wouldn't be there. Good luck with your wedding and Congratulations!
Bridal Consultant & owner of Elegant Events by Marci

Married: 08/15/2009
May 13, 2009 at 4:26 PM • Flag As Inappropriate
Oh man, I haven't even gotten my invitations and already know this is going to be a BIG problem at my wedding. I like the idea someone posted before about if they dont RSVP or RSVP No, and then show up...they can hang around to see if someone doesn't show or go to the bar and hang out while dinner is done and then join for the party. Our families have a tendency that if you invite a couple, they bring 5 more people with them. Luckily we have been together for 10 years, and know from experience how things go. And YES you are absolutely right, it's really rude for people to do that and I was going to have an "adults only" wedding, but then figured what would our kids do (4 and 9 years old) so the Event Director is giving me a meeting room where they will be entertained with all of the other kids that are coming and they can leave us alone :-) Good luck girly!!

Married: 09/26/2009
May 13, 2009 at 10:04 PM • Flag As Inappropriate
Too bad you already sent out your invitations. I know how people can be about not RSVPing and showing up with extra people. One thing I am doing is listing the amount of seats being reserved for each guest/family. So for the Smith family, my RSVPs state that:

2 Seats have been reserved in your honor.

And then I'll ask them to legibly write the names of those attending so they can be correct for my place cards.

That way, they can't bring extra guests or family members. They know exactly how many can come. I am also have an adult only reception.

My coordinators made it clear that they will be "guarding" the door. If non-rsvp guests show up, they will not be allowed to get in and my coordinators are going to make it clear that they aren't going to come and get me to ask for my permission.
I think its rude to make non-rsvp guests pay, but I would have someone kindly turn them away for non-compliance.

Married: 2+ years ago
May 13, 2009 at 10:14 PM • Flag As Inappropriate
I've been there before and have had to deal with calling a lot of friends whom I hadn't heard from and if they didn't reply or replied as no and showed up, they weren't allowed in. For our's I'm having a RSVP Hotline for my guests to reply to (not RSVP Cards) and pay pros to call those who don't reply. We will make a list and give it to our restaurant or have a trusted fan check the names on the list and they have to present their "Ticket with their name printed on it" to get in. If your name isn't on the list, sorry tough luck is what will be said to them in a nice way of course. I don't want any Wedding Crashers or anyone who is too rude to reply coming.

Married: 2+ years ago
May 13, 2009 at 10:17 PM • Flag As Inappropriate
My cousin did hear from me for her Wedding we couldn't come for financial reasons and at the time when I was working at a Full Time job they wouldn't give me her Wedding Weekend off to go to the Wedding. I felt bad calling her a week to couple days prior to her Wedding saying I was going to be in town where her Wedding was b/c it was the last time I would ever see my grandfather (dad's dad) and that weekend was her Wedding Weekend. Given she knew the circumstances ahead of time and my reply was in before he final count needed to be given to her Caterer it wasn't a problem. Other than that I would never pull that on anyone for them to have to call to see if I was coming or not.

Married: 09/05/2010
May 14, 2009 at 3:53 PM • Flag As Inappropriate
I have worked events for a couple elite institutions and one thing I learned is "Not Heard From" follow up. The day after the RSVP date we would send a NHF email. "Dear So & So, We would like to follow up to the invitation you received for event & event details. We have not yet heard from you and would like to follow up. Add some more event details such as choice for food, rain information, etc. If you have any questions, please contact so and so at phone and email address. The favor of your reply is requested, even if you are unable to attend. Thank you, Name.
This works really well because people find it really easy to respond via email. Then after a couple days, follow up again with NHF calling. I know I will use this method for my own wedding - just probably personalize the wording more. Hope this helps!

Heather B.

Agape Weddings
May 16, 2009 at 4:16 AM • Flag As Inappropriate
As a coordinator, I work very hard to help my brides avoid these issues. I do recommend, as Lboogie wrote putting the number of seats reserved on the response card. Although, one of my best friends recently got married and I had made this suggestion to her. She called me a few weeks before the wedding and told me she got a card back on which the guest had crossed out the 2 (We have reserved 2 seats for you) and wrote 9! Unbelievable!

Married: 07/16/2011
May 18, 2009 at 10:39 AM • Flag As Inappropriate
I don't feel it would be rude at all. When my cousin was married they had their hostess check off guest as they arrived at the reception. If someone's name wasn't on the guest list they were given the option to wait and see if any guest where unable to attend, and if so they were seated if there were no shows who RSVP.
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