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Review the Basic Elements of an Invitation, Reply Card and Map Insert

Basic Invitation Guidelines

  • Use a consistent style for all printed pieces from the save-the-date cards to invitations to programs 
  • The invitation should include the who, what, when, where, why and cost of attending 
  • Prominently feature the UCLA acronym or logo to clearly designate the event as originating from UCLA. Follow UCLA’s graphic identity standards. 
  • No more than four font sizes or two font styles should be used 
  • Do not abbreviate – spell out all words 
  • If the Chancellor, Chancellor’s spouse or Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost are noted on the invitation, the Chancellor’s Office must approve the final design before going to print

Formal invitation Components

  • Name of host 
  • Invitational (requests the pleasure of your company, cordially invites you to) 
  • Event type/name/purpose (e.g., luncheon, dinner, reception, lecture) 
  • Date 
  • Hour 
  • Place 
  • Reply instructions (e.g., reply card or phone number) 
  • Disabled instructions (e.g., fax or email) 
  • Attire instructions (e.g., casual, business, formal) 
  • Directions

RSVP/Reply Card Components

If you need to guarantee catering, have limited seating, or need to know specifically who is attending, it is suggested that you include some form of reply instructions. If you are printing a reply card, include:

  • Event name 
  • Event Date 
  • Line(s) for the guest name(s) 
  • Line for a daytime telephone number (or email) 
  • Attendance indicator (I/We will ____ attend) 
  • Special instructions (e.g., reply by date, inquiry telephone number)

Map Components

If you are inviting off-campus guests, including a map and directions is essential. Try not to print the map on the back of invitation, but include as a separate insert. The map should highlight the following:

  • Major streets/freeways bordering the location 
  • Parking location (lot/structure number) 
  • Parking instructions and fees (e.g., complimentary, valet, parking fee) 
  • Event venue and address, especially if off campus 
  • If on campus, note “UCLA” to indicate the campus location 
  • Compass indicator


  • Use stamps when possible. Do not meter invitations. Metered mail can look like junk mail. 
  • Check postal regulations to determine if your mailed piece will require extra postage.