Do you have an engagement, wedding, baby shower, or graduation coming up? Is there a performance, school event, or meeting to which you want to invite people? Any special religious ceremonies like Communion or a Bar Mitzvah? Do you want to invite someone to speak at your meeting or conference? Whatever your event is, the following will help you write an effective invitation.

Guidelines for writing invitations:

  • State the occasion, date, time, and place. Include addresses and a map if necessary. Mention if refreshments will be served. List any charges that may apply. Include a telephone number for RSVPs. If there is a dress code, state the preferred dress in the lower left-hand corner of the card.
  • If you need a response, include a self-addressed, stamped reply card or envelope with your invitation.
  • Express that you are looking forward to seeing the person.
  • Do not use abbreviations and do not use contractions (don’t; we’ll) except for name titles, such as Mr., Mrs., etc.
  • If dinner will be served, state two separate times: the time people can start arriving and the time dinner will be served.
  • If you do not want gifts, briefly state that gifts are not wanted or needed. Explain that their presence is the only gift you need.
  • Make sure you send your invitations out with ample advance notice.
  • If you have guests coming from out of town or from other countries, you may want to send out your invitation several months in advance (especially if your event takes place around a holiday.) This will allow your guests adequate time to make preparations, reservations, save money, etc.
  • For smaller, less formal events that include local guests or guests from nearby areas, you may only need to provide a few weeks’ notice.
  • If you are inviting someone to speak at a conference, your invitation should include the following information:
    • Name of the conference and the sponsoring organization;
    • Date, time, place of the conference and speech;
    • Type of audience;
    • The type of speech, topic, and how long the speech should be;
    • Any accommodations that will be made, including lodging, meals, and transportation;
    • The name of the contact person along with phone numbers and addresses where the person can be contacted; and
    • Finally, articulate your pleasure of having the person speak at the meeting or conference.

Helpful words you can use: Click on each word to get definitions and examples from WordNet 1.7 Vocabulary Helper.

Attend Cancel Celebration Commemorate
Event Honor Postpone Rejoice
Salute Solemnize Welcome

Format for writing invitations:

Formal Invitation

Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin Rasool
cordially invite you to a reception
celebrating the engagement of
Mary Jane Rasool and Robert Yates
to be held Sunday, the sixth of June, the year of 2009
at six o’clock
Pierre’s Cafe
800 23rd Street NW

Washington, DC

RSVP Semi-Formal Dress
(111) 111-1111

Business Invitation

Longman’s Transportation Services
Cordially invites you to the
15th Annual Employees Appreciation Picnic.
The whole family is welcome!
12:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Saturday, May 22, 2009
South Redding Creek Park
Redding, Maryland
Food, drink, games, and entertainment will be provided.

Personal Invitation

You are invited to Michael Carison’s 10th birthday!
Date: Saturday June 12, 2009
Time: 11:30 am to 3:00 pm
Where: 345 Eastern Avenue
Lodi, Washington
Call Tonia at (111) 111-1111 to RSVP

Sourced by Janel Muyesseroglu

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