Are Wedding Reception Cards Necessary?

Skip the reception cards and include the details in the invitation

Close-up of Rose With Invitation Card on Plate at Wedding Reception
Eva Voica / EyeEm / Getty Images

Wedding invitations are among the many things you have to think about when planning your dream wedding. While you do need to include all the details, is it necessary to send a separate wedding reception card? It's a common question and the good news is that it's not required.

Whether your ceremony and reception are at the same venue or not, a separate card is for the reception is not essential. You can include one if you like, of course, but there are ways to incorporate the details in the invitations themselves. This can help you stay on budget.

How to Address the Reception in the Invitation

Addressing your wedding reception inside of your wedding invitation is the easiest way to let your guests know all the information they need. This foregoes the need for a separate reception card and can help you reduce printing costs.

  • Add a sentence or two to the bottom of the invitation that says something along the lines of "Reception to follow."
  • For a less formal option, consider something like, "Please join us for lunch [cocktails, dessert, etc] after the ceremony."

If the reception is at the same place as the ceremony, make sure you have other people on hand to show guests precisely where the reception space is. This is a good job for groomsmen and ushers. To make it even easier for guests, you can also put up signs or other decorations showing them the way.

What If the Reception Is Not at the Same Place?

If your reception doesn't happen to be in the same place as your ceremony, don't worry. It is still not essential to include a reception card, you can still address the location change at the bottom of the wedding invitation.

For example, an invitation with reception details may look like the following:

Mr & Mrs. Allen Feffer 
request the pleasure of your company 
at the marriage of their daughter 
Susan Hilda
to 

Max Andrew Ling 
St Mary's Church, Hanover
Saturday, September 20th, 2017
Four o'clock in the afternoon
And afterward for a reception at Brown's Hotel

Details to Include

In the above example, the invitation formally invites guests while also strategically addressing the location of the reception. Typically, couples also include a map and driving directions with the invitation as well as any other details the guest may need.

Among the details you may want to include are recommended hotels in the area, day-after brunch information, and local points of interest. Although several guests may have a GPS or smartphone to help with directions, it is still a good idea to include this information.

With careful planning and a little help from your invitation designer, it is possible to include all of this on an inexpensive paper stock that is placed inside the envelope. There's no need to get fancy with these details, so you can keep your costs in check.

Keep in mind that it is good manners to make attending your wedding as easy as possible for your guests by laying out all of the details ahead of time. While you may know the plan, think of it from their perspective and anticipate any questions they may have. It will end up saving you time in the long run because you won't have to answer the same questions over and over.