The ultimate guide to wedding invitation etiquette; from the timings of your day to details about your gift list and more...
Your wedding invitation will not only be the first insight to your wedding that your guests will see, but it will also be the one vital piece of information that they’ll need in order to find out everything they need to know about your special day.
We’ve come up with a list of vital key points that we think you should include on your wedding invitations in order to help your guests attend your wedding with ease; from the timings of the day to what’s on the menu at your wedding banquet.
The Specific Names of Who you want to Invite
This may be obvious – but you must clearly mention who exactly is invited to your wedding. If you are inviting a single friend, is a plus 1 included? If you are inviting a couple with a child or children, you must state whether they are also invited. Being unclear on your wedding invitations regarding who exactly is invited to the wedding could cause you an issue later down the line. Make sure you make it very clear on the outside of the envelope if you are sending a standard invite, or on the inside if you’re hand-writing out the names.
The Wedding Venue: Details and Directions
If you’re getting married in a church then be sure to include the exact location and postcode of the church. Parking information should also be included, especially if your guests need to pay for parking or if parking is limited.
If you’re having a civil wedding ceremony and holding your reception at one dedicated wedding venue then the name of the wedding venue, address and postcode information are essential. Include any additional key information about parking or directions if you think your guests may need it.
Timings of the Day
If you’ve got daytime and evening guests then you must specify what time you would like each group of people to arrive at your wedding. You wouldn’t want people showing up to the daytime part of your wedding if they’ve only been invited to the evening reception. It’s also a good idea to say what time your wedding celebration will end. That way, guests needing to book a taxi or transport home will know what time to book it for.
The time of your wedding ceremony is a key bit of information that needs to be clearly stated on the invite, so that day time guests know to arrive earlier.
Top Tip: Make it clear on your wedding invitations, whether or not you are inviting the guest to just the evening reception, if you’re having two guest lists.
An RSVP Card
If you include an RSVP card with a pre-paid envelope within your wedding invitations then you’re more than likely going to get all of your correspondence back on time; making your life much easier. You should also mention when you would like all your RSVPs back by – if you don’t state this date, people may delay in sending back their response.
If people can’t attend your wedding from your initial guest list then you may be able to invite people on your reserves list instead (if you’ve got one).
Details About your Wedding Gift List
If you’ve decided to have a wedding gift list then its best to include details of it within your wedding invitations so that your guests can buy you a gift with ease. If you leave them guessing then you might end up with something you don’t want, need, or like.
If you like the idea of creating a wedding gift list with a department store then you must ensure that this is all set up with a reference code in advance, so that guests know what to input when they receive your invitation and want to buy you a gift.
Wedding Menu Options
If your wedding venue allows your guests to choose a menu option themselves then be sure to include these in your wedding invitations. It’s also a good idea at this stage to ask your guests if they’ve got any dietary requirements you need to know about. The chef at your wedding venue might be able to offer an alternative meal for vegetarians, a gluten free diet or any other special diet requests. Speak to your wedding venue well in advance when it comes to your wedding banquet options.
Local Accommodation Information
If your wedding venue doesn’t provide rooms for guests wishing to stay overnight, then it might be nice to include details of local or nearby hotels or B&Bs so that your guests can book them up if required. Or, if your venue does offer accommodation and has given you a preferred rate, then be sure to include this information in your wedding invitations.
If you are hiring an exclusive use wedding venue with a limited amount of bedrooms, be sure to allocate these accordingly and let those guests know that they have been invited to stay.
Information About your Wedding Website
If you have created a wedding website for your day, then it would definitely be worth adding this to your wedding invitations. Your own wedding website may contain more information than you are able to include on your wedding invitations and it may even have a direct link to your wedding gift list, local accommodation and your chosen wedding venue of course. If it's extra smart then you may even be able to have a digital RSVP link on there too!