Wedding Invitation Etiquette

Wedding invitation etiquette is a little more complex than save the date etiquette, but with the right guidance it doesn’t have to be confusing. See below for a quick guide to wedding invitation etiquette.


Wedding etiquette is beautiful, but it’s also a beast. Invitations can be complex. Let’s break down the anatomy of an invitation:

  • Invitation: formal invitations typically include information as to who is hosting the wedding (bride’s parents, groom’s parents, both sets of parents, or you), your names, the wedding date, time, and location.
  • Reception Card: if you’re reception is at a different location than your ceremony, you can include a card with information on the start time and location.
  • RSVP Card: This card allows your guests to indicate whether or not each invited member of the household will be able to attend the ceremony, reception, or both. They will also allow guests to indicate their meal choice for the reception and any additional information you’d like to include (such as song requests for the DJ!). Invitations with an RSVP card will include a pre-addressed stamped envelope for guests to return their reply.
  • Additional information: Some couples choose to include maps or accommodation information in their invitations.

Pick and choose from the above and stuff it all into the fitted envelope from back to front (for example, the reception card goes on top of / in front of the invitation). If the idea of including a bunch of inserts feels like a lot, use your wedding website to list information such as maps, directions, and accommodations and to collect RSVPs. Hello Wedding makes it easy to include an RSVP button that automatically updates your guest list as people respond, so you can see who’s coming in real time.


When wording your invitations, there are several rules of thumb as to how to apply formal etiquette. If you’re doing it yourself, Crane & Co’s guide to wedding invitations will walk you through the rules of wording your invitation.

And of course, it’s up to you how closely you want to follow wedding invitation etiquette rules. While many couples do like the idea of sticking to basic etiquette (and have even found ways to make it feel modern), go with what feels right for you and your guests. Just make sure to include all of the relevant information as well as a way for your guests to RSVP.