You never get a second chance to make a first impression.

R.S.V.P. is an abbreviation for the French phrase “respondez s’il vous plait”, which translated, means “Respond if you please”, or more loosly, “Please respond”.  One should respond to an invitation, whether it is by snail mail, electronic, or telephone – as soon as possible.  More formal invitations will sometimes have a deadline for responding so that the host can provide caterers and other vendors with head-count information.


Even a casual invitation – or a request of a friend or business associate – should be replied to promptly when possible.  To RSVP  is the polite and respectful way of “answering” your neighbor, friend, or host in the most timely manner so they can move forward with their plans.

If the invitation is formal, as in a wedding or reception event, usually a self-addressed and stamped envelope with the details will be provided for one to return with great ease, albeit replacing a once beautiful tradition of handwriting one’s reply.  Other less formal invitations and requests may come electronically…and may also be answered in the same manner. Following up with a phone call to an electronic reply is always a good idea just to make sure your recipient received the information.

With travels and the busy schedules of so many, emails get lost, forgotten, or missed so it is always a good idea to follow up if one hasn’t received a reply when needed.

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