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JLBC: Leadership

JLBC: Leadership

Acceptance of a formal invitation

Withdrawing an approval or invitation

There are a few valid reasons to withdraw the acceptance of an invitation:

  • Serious illness

  • A death in the family

  • Absence due to an upcoming transfer

  • Official duty

  • Significant business elsewhere

It should be noted that an invitation to The White House takes precedence over all others.

a. Recalling a formal invitation. When unavoidable circumstances warrant, a formal invitation may be recalled. If the occasion was small, and the guests would know the reason for withdrawal, none need be given. However, if guests are unaware of the reason for withdrawal, the reason for recalling the invitation is prepared similarly to the invitation.

b. Advancing or postponing an invitation. Advancing or delaying is better than canceling! An announcement changing the date of an invitation must include an RSVP.

Informal invitations

a. General. Invitations to casual dinner parties, luncheons, teas, cocktails, and buffet suppers may be extended by personal note, telephone, or a short message prepared on a calling card or formal card. If a reply is desired, include “RSVP” or “Regrets only,” followed by a telephone number or address. This may also be used on informal invitations when it is necessary to know the number of guests expected.

b. Informal note. An invitation to a social function may be extended by an informal message if the host or hostess does not wish to use the engraved card or the third-person style invitation. Informal notes are correct for small casual dinners but are tiresome for large dinners and are incorrect for official dinners.

c. Replies to informal invitations.

(1) Informal notes and card invitations usually do not require a written answer, but one may be requested. A telephone reply is also proper.

(2) A written answer may be prepared informally on a calling card or in the third person format used for engraved invitations (replies are addressed to the hostess-only).

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