Are Email Wedding Invitations a Bad Idea?

Are email wedding invitations a bad idea? Are printed wedding invitations really better than email? Find out what we think along with seven reasons why… and let us know if you agree!

Are Email Wedding Invitations a Bad Idea? via

Are Email Wedding Invitations a Bad Idea?

Email wedding invitations are virtually free, require no postage, and eliminate paper waste. Where’s the negative? In an article about whether using evite to send out wedding invitations, a large percentage of comments voted against it, labeling it as a ‘tacky’. We don’t like that label; just because one couple chooses one thing doesn’t mean another couple is wrong… or, in this case, ‘tacky’. What do the wedding etiquette experts say? According to The Emily Post Institute, email wedding invitations are a definite wedding don’t. When you’re trying to decide between sending email wedding invitations or printed invites, we think printed is best. As a rule of thumb, The Emily Post Institute says if you would feel comfortable inviting someone to a particular event via telephone, an email invitation is acceptable. Since you probably wouldn’t invite someone to a wedding over the phone, email wedding invitations may not be a good idea. Here are seven reasons why we think so… but, of course, to each his (or her) own!

Why You Need Printed Invitations

1. A printed invitation is more formal.

Plus, it can set the tone and theme of your occasion. An email invitation is extremely informal.

2. An invitation is hand-addressed to the recipient.

This infers a personal invitation unto your guest.

3. Everyone receives mail…

… but not everyone receives e-mail.

4. Paper invitations require no tech knowledge.

With a printed invitation, there is no virtual rsvp to send, no map to download, and no website to have to visit for details. This is a definite plus for guests who may not have the time or tech knowledge that email wedding invitations require.

5. A wedding requires a guest’s time and money…

A printed invitation shows effort on your part.

6. Spam Bin.

Unlike email, printed invitations can’t be sent to a spam bin or deleted accidentally. Whoops!

7. Wrong e-mail address?

If you mail something to the wrong address, the postmaster will deliver it back directly to you. However, if you have the wrong email address – the recipient doesn’t check the inbox but the account is still valid – you’ll never know whether he or she received your invitation.

Wedding Tips

Going green? You can order printed wedding invitations on post-consumer paper which is more eco-friendly. Saving money? Buy postcard style response cards which require less postage than a standard stamp.

Need Wedding Advice?

Ask Emmaline! Our newest feature is up-and-running and we’re ready to take your wedding advice questions. (It’s FREE!) Click here to get started.

Happy Planning!


Now It’s Your Turn: Would you send email wedding invitations? Why or why not?

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Emma Arendoski

CEO/Editor at Emmaline Bride
Blogger, author, wife + mother. I love coffee, DIY, handmade + all things wedding. Check out my books: "The Handcrafted Wedding" (2012) and "The Inspired Wedding" (2014). You can also find me blogging at Emmaline Baby.
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  • Brooke

    There is no elegance in receiving an emailed wedding invitation. If a nice sized wedding gift is expected, I expect the full treatment and honor, as your guest.

  • Kayleigh

    We also used email to send out our save the dates. It made things so much easier, cheaper and more organized. I even found a really cool site called that let me create a wedding email address ending in to use when I sent out the save the dates. In this day and age everything is digital. There are so many sites now with really creative digital save the dates and invitations to choose from. I also feel its the “greener” way to go.

  • Kristina

    Although it was for my Parent’s Wedding Anniversary. We e-mailed “Save The Date” announcements and invites to friends who use the internet quite a bit. In order to make sure we didn’t overlook friends and family, we utilized FB and included a website for RSVP responses and encouraged those who couldn’t make the party to sign the guestbook.

  • Valerie Madison

    I think it’s circumstantial for everyone. We have a lot of younger folks attending our wedding and haven’t received any word of problems associated with our email invites. I don’t like the idea of spending money on a physical item that I know will likely end up in the garbage (save for my mother and grandmother, of course). We are close with all of our guests coming and our wedding isn’t terribly formal or as traditional as most, so I can appreciate that everyone has different POVs on this. Email invites speak to our personalities and if it matches you, then you should do it, too! When I couldn’t decide which direction to go, paper vs. email, my fiancé reminded me that this is my wedding, I can do whatever I like! I went through Paperless Post which allowed for a *very* tasteful invitation and has features that lets me keep track of who has opened them, which emails have failed (which I can resend to another address), and I can even follow up and send/receive personal or group messages any time I want!

  • Emma | Emmaline Bride

    Hi Dianna! True – email has the possibility of being missed or, as you mentioned, not responded to. Great point!

  • Jamie

    I am curious everyone’s thoughts on paper invites, but requesting that RSVP’s to be sent through email.

    • Emma | Emmaline Bride

      Jamie, I think paper invitations with RSVPs through email makes perfect sense. The couple can save money on postage and receive responses instantly from guests. For guests who do not have access to email, you may wish to send a paper response card with pre-stamped postage. Great idea!

  • Katie

    I just attended my friend’s wedding on Saturday — she sent out an e-invite and it made me forget about the event several times, especially before and right after. My phone kept dying and her website wasn’t responsive, making getting the details a task and a half.

    A few weeks ago I attended my friend’s wedding who used letterpress invitations — that thing will hold a special place on my fridge for a few months ,at least! I had a great time at both weddings but must admit the one with the e-invite felt more like a party with all of our mutual Facebook friends while the other felt like an affair I had to lovingly prepare for.

    • Emma | Emmaline Bride

      Interesting! I’m so happy you commented: I was wondering the difference between an e-invite and a printed invitation from a guest’s point of view. I could see the same thing happening to me (my phone dying as I’m trying to figure out the time) versus the ease of having an invitation I look at every day in anticipation.

      Just out of curiosity, was there a noticeable difference in the number of guests at either wedding?

      • Katie

        The e-invite wedding was definitely smaller, but I am not sure if that was just a matter of her guest list being a little more intimate! She had guests from Indiana and Chicago flying out to California as well, which might have made it harder to make it out there (but would a paper invite have made it seem like a bigger deal to out of town guests…..?). Such a tricky topic!

  • Maggie

    I personally wouldn’t do evites, but I know others who would. My BIL uses them for all his parties and events, and simply won’t invite people who don’t use have email. Which is a bit short-sighted, IMO. Older family members are frequently left out. :-(

    I wouldn’t be surprised if evite wedding invitations are common within the next 10 years, though.

    • Emma | Emmaline Bride

      Maggie, I understand how that method of no-email, no-invite could leave people out! I wouldn’t be surprised if it became more of the “norm” in a decade, too… though I think there will always be a need and a want for paper invitations as a nod to tradition. Thanks for your comment!

  • Paola

    I disagree. I think it can be done tastefully. I am doing invites through Glo, and I think they look great. The e-mail invite is saving paper and money, is very “us” (I’m a developer), and is forward thinking. Whoever isn’t on e-mail needs to catch up with the rest of the world, because tech isn’t going anywhere.

    • Emma | Emmaline Bride

      Paola, thanks for your comment. I understand and respect your position. I do like how you’re a developer and as you mentioned your email invite will be very “us”. To each his (or her) own!

    • Gee| EverythingWeddingsAndMore

      I agree with you Paola on disagreeing with emailing as a wedding don’t. Yes to each their own, but i am that girl that would hardly ever keep a wedding invitation no matter how pretty or expensive it is. I just feel such paper and money can be channeled somewhere else. However I do respect the fact that the “older” people may not be “used” to the idea so I can understand making such provision for them. But like I said, as a wedding guest I sure would prefer an email.