Give 6 weeks notice for birthday invites

Give 6 weeks notice for birthday invites

I’ll admit it’s a bit ridiculous.

When I’m planning a birthday party for my kids, I’ll send the invitation out well in advance. In fact, I’ll send out notice so many weeks in advance, even wedding invites don’t get mailed that early.

I was never sure whether I was doing the right thing. What is the etiquette on kids’ birthday party invitations? How much notice do you need to give? Kids these days are busy—over scheduled, even—so if you want your child’s friends to attend you’ve got to give parents ample notice, right?

My son was recently invited to a party by a mom who emailed parents a week in advance. One week! I realize that not everyone is a planner. Parents are busy, too. But with one week notice, my son is already busy. I tried to re-jig his schedule so he could be with his friends but was unable to back out of a previous commitment. Now I’m disappointed he has to miss out.

Birthday parties aren’t just a chance to eat cake and get a loot bag. They are an opportunity to bond with classmates and solidify friendships. They are a chance to gain independence and try something fun.

I’m not going to make a big deal of this situation, but it did make me wonder how much notice is appropriate for a kid’s birthday party. There are no rules, so every parent is entitled to make their own decisions. My opinion is that parents should give at least six weeks notice. What do you think?


Reply to
  • HeatherR

    We don't have birthday parties for our kids but all of the invitations they have received have only had one or two weeks notice. The most notice we've ever been given was three weeks.

    • Noahsmum

      I've gotten an invite for a 6 year old party about 5 weeks before the date so another 2 weeks to go.  I think it's ridiculous.  

      Sure most get booked up and etc but I know other kids are also trying to get the same dates and etc. I think 3 weeks is more than enough.

      • Cjones

        Two - three weeks. Any less don't expect anyone, any more and you come across as pretentious forcing people to hang into that date for so long. Of course to begin with, close friends etc are advised / consulted as to which dates would be best to avoid disappointment!

        • ringwood

          2-3 weeks is plenty. Six weeks is way too long. I would hope that the average kid wouldn't be so over-scheduled that they would be forced to miss a friend's party, given ample notice.

          • Tjmom

            I have just sent out invites to my kids’ birthday party 5 weeks in advance, and asked to RSVP 10 days before the actual party date.

            I don’t understand what is so pretentious about it. We just want to be able to plan ahead. We want to know who is all coming, so we can plan food and drinks better (some kids have dietary restriction), and I want to be able to give some thoughts to the loot bag content, rather than just distributing random stuff from dollar stores. If time allows, i would like to gift the children something customized for each, hoping that it makes tehm feel special.

            If people can’t come, then that is fine by us. They are surely not forced to come just because I gave long advanced notice to our party. The goal of sending out advanced invitation is not to force people to come.

            Our weekend calendar often fills in weeks in advance, so I agree with the author of the article. Giving 6 weeks notice, if you can, sounds like a considerable thing to do.