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Ellie
Just Said Yes September 2017

Paper RSVP vs. Online RSVP

Ellie, on May 9, 2017 at 9:54 AM Posted in Planning 0 22
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For our wedding invitations, we are trying to decide between including a formal paper RSVP card for guests to return by mail or requesting that guests RSVP online via our wedding website.

The wedding website allows us to customize the RSVP for each guest (e.g. if the guest is invited with a spouse/partner/plus one and if the guest is invited to the rehearsal dinner). Via the wedding website, there is also more space to include full information regarding the dinner option (e.g. we have space to list the sides, as opposed to simply "roast chicken").

In order to have the same functionality with the paper RSVP, at a minimum we would need to include separate RSVPs for the rehearsal dinner or an information card with a request that guests RSVP for the rehearsal dinner via a separate medium (e.g. email).

I would like to hear experiences others have had with both paper and online RSVPs. Any advice? Regrets? General experiences?

Thank you in advance!

22 Comments

Latest activity by FutureMrsN, on May 9, 2017 at 5:48 PM
  • LoveLoveLove
    Super October 2017
    LoveLoveLove ·
    • Flag

    We're doing website only. It's a gamble because some people (older aunts/uncles) are not tech savvy and won't go online. We're planning to call those people or have their children RSVP for them.

    I've seen separate invites for rehearsal dinners. I recommend going that route - rather than stuffing an additional card in the wedding invitation.

    • Reply
  • MrsMitch
    Master August 2017
    MrsMitch ·
    • Flag

    We're giving the option for both. Some people, particularly older, may not be tech savvy.

    • Reply
  • FutureMrsKosloske
    Super July 2017
    FutureMrsKosloske ·
    • Flag

    I am doing the website route and I am regretting it. The older people invited to the wedding are having more of a difficult time RSVP ing than anticipated. We gave them the option to call, but instead they all are trying to RSVP on their own and leaving info out. I would recommend doing paper RSVP whole heartedly.

    • Reply
  • LauraR
    VIP June 2017
    LauraR ·
    • Flag

    We're giving the option for both but haven't had a single person RSVP online beyond my mom when she tested the process.

    • Reply
  • Keisha
    Master September 2018
    Keisha ·
    • Flag

    Our wedding is older so we are going the paper route. My mom couldn't figure out the online RSVP process for a wedding she is invited to in July. If she can't get it I can just imagine how bad everyone else on our list will struggle

    • Reply
  • Mrs. Knolle
    Master July 2016
    Mrs. Knolle ·
    • Flag

    We had both options. Only 1 person used our wedding website to rsvp. I would send separate invitations for the rehearsal dinner. The guest list should be much smaller than for the actual wedding.

    • Reply
  • A. L.
    Master July 2017
    A. L. ·
    • Flag

    Paper 1000%. My favorite part of getting RSVPs back is seeing so many folks have handwritten comments wishing us well. I'm definitely going to save them.

    • Reply
  • MS102017
    Devoted October 2017
    MS102017 ·
    • Flag

    We're having both. Our parents age group will more likely mail the rsvp back but I know our friends will rsvp online. However, since we haven't finalized the menu (DW and havent done a tasting yet), we will have our reception meal choices online only.

    • Reply
  • Dreamer
    Master May 2013
    Dreamer ·
    • Flag

    A few years ago we requested online responses, through our wedding website. We heard from 248 of 250 invited guests 10 days before our due date. Even my then 87 year old grandmother, with minimal computer skills, was able to do it.

    We included one, insert card, with our website, response date, 3 entrée selections, and our wedding e-mail address for "Late responses and dietary requests."

    We had a very formal wedding, sent formal/boxed invitations, so the request was not for budget reasons. After doing a lot of internet research and finding out how few of those cards/envelopes/stamps get returned, we wanted to eliminate waste, and we did.

    We've been invited to around 25 weddings, over the last 5 years and the majority of those have requested online responses. The least formal of those weddings, and those with the smaller budgets (as evident through guest hosting) were the ones to waste money on response cards.

    • Reply
  • T
    Beginner September 2017
    Tia ·
    • Flag

    We haven't sent our invitations out yet, but we are doing online only. We included our website on the Save the dates and we already have 23 people that have RSVP'd. Eliminates waste as most do not reply with response cards.

    • Reply
  • Katherine
    VIP June 2017
    Katherine ·
    • Flag

    I did online only. Most of my guests are younger than 60 and the ones that were older I know use the computer for email or Facebook so I thought they could all handle it. I had 190/315 who had not RSVP'd on our date. I had to call all of them and it was awful and took forever. Some people I contacted said they had trouble with it and it wouldn't take their names, but went in and did it pretending to be them, I had no trouble at all. Others just didn't RSVP, maybe thinking that they didn't have to since there was no card to send back? Even though I included a card that said where and when to RSVP. However, those that actually did do thought it was awesome and so convenient.

    If I were to do it again, I would do both options.

    • Reply
  • NatHam
    VIP October 2017
    NatHam ·
    • Flag

    We are having two different RSVP cards made, about 30 of one and 70 of the other.

    We will be sending out a mail option (with the option of going online) to the older guests and everyone else will get an online rsvp.

    • Reply
  • Private_User832
    Master August 2017
    Private_User832 ·
    • Flag

    Love my rsvp online! No problems so far and about 60 guests (30 couples) have gone online successfully already.

    Also I get to see comments online from guests which is fun!

    • Reply
  • Kate
    Expert August 2017
    Kate ·
    • Flag

    We're doing website only.

    • Reply
  • Ariel
    Devoted September 2017
    Ariel ·
    • Flag

    With the online RSVP, how did you deal with the plus ones, vs whole families? Was going to add my own forum, but saw that this was similar.

    • Reply
  • Mrs.Love
    Expert June 2017
    Mrs.Love ·
    • Flag

    We did online and our phone numbers as another way to RSVP. Its worked for the most part. Its allowed me to keep track of everyone and the seating chart changed with every decline (their names removed from the seat).

    • Reply
  • Ellie
    Just Said Yes September 2017
    Ellie ·
    • Flag

    @Ariel - Our wedding website (wedding woo) allows us to add guests to a single reservation, which is searchable by the guest inputting any name under that reservation. Thus, if you input John Smith, it also hows the reservation for Mary Smith and Alice Smith OR it shows that John Smith can input a reservation for an unnamed guest (e.g. the plus one). I think whether you have this functionality would depend on what program/website you use. I would definitely recommend wedding woo.

    For those who did both online AND paper, did you find it ended up being twice as much work in order to set up both procedures and then cross-reference the RSVPs into a common template?

    • Reply
  • Meghan
    Dedicated May 2018
    Meghan ·
    • Flag

    We're planning on doing both. A lot of FH's side is older, he's one of the youngest besides the cousins children. It'll be easier for them to RSVP that way but we're also using the website for those who are pretty tech savvy & would prefer to RSVP that way.

    • Reply
  • Mary
    Savvy June 2017
    Mary ·
    • Flag

    We used paperlesspost.com

    Some people have had trouble, but for the most part it has worked great. It's also awesome for keeping up to date on how many people have RSVPd, who have opened it, and who hasn't seen it at all. You can also schedule reminders.

    • Reply
  • Greenleaf
    Devoted July 2017
    Greenleaf ·
    • Flag

    We're doing RSVP via email, set up a special gmail account for it. I'm honestly not sure how it's going to go (very well may be a nightmare). Invites are going out tomorrow, so we'll see!

    • Reply

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