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All of us should be familiar with invitation letters. At some point in our lives, we have received invitations, countless of them for sure, and each covering a certain event to which our presence is much appreciated. A typical sample invitations letter will contain information about the host, the time, date, and venue of the affair. It will also specify how one would accept the invitation.

What is an invitation letter?

Formally defined, an invitation letter is a document that presents a request for the attendance of a person, a group of people or an organization to an event. Depending on the occasion, the letter could either be informal or formal. You can print it the old-fashioned way or send it through email. These letters come in two main types:

  • Invitation letter for Visa
    This letter is for a person who lives in one country and gets invited to visit in another country. The format of this communication varies from the usual letters of invite for social functions. When inviting a person to your country, format the letter should in such a way that the guest will be able to use this for a Visa application.
  • Invitation letters for events
    There are two kinds of invitation letters for events which are:
    a letter to the persons who will have a special role in an event
    a letter to the persons to attend an event

Downloadable Templates:

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Structuring your invitation letter

Writing a well-crafted, formal invitation letter could be time-consuming, especially if you don’t know where and how to start. To facilitate composing one, here are some pointers that can help you out. First, you will have to determine the answers to these questions:

  • Who?
    This refers to those who you will invite to the event. In relation to this, can these attendees invite others too?
  • What and Why?
    These refer to the reason or purpose of the affair. There could be several reasons for the invitation.
  • Where?
    This refers to the venue of the event. Is the location appropriate and will there be a need to book the venue?
  • When?
    This refers to the date and time of the affair. You may set the time in advance, or you may discuss it later on.

After having decided the answers to these inquiries, you may begin writing your sample invitations letter:

  • Subject line
    An important factor to think about when you’re writing an invitation letter for business meetings is the subject line. In most cases, it’s a deciding factor for the recipient on whether he will open your letter. An easy way to make sure your letter gets considered is by including the first name of the subject.
  • Opening
    The opening line of your letter will be the first words the recipient will see when he opens your document. You need a line that will grab the reader’s attention and urge him to go on to the next lines. Remember that first impressions matter.
    A good opening will also set the style and tone of the entire letter. You may base the opening line on your earlier relationship with the reader. Whether the tone of your letter would be formal and strict or a little bit more casual will depend on how familiar you are with the reader.
  • Reason
    Mention in your letter the reason for the invitation. This will allow the reader to have sufficient time to prepare. If the meeting has an agenda, attach it to your letter. You don’t have to write a very detailed description of the meeting. This may overwhelm the reader and, consequently, might lose interest. A good suggestion is to mention the topics for discussion in bullet points format.
  • Details
    Include the details of the setting in your invitation. Specify the place and the time of the event. This will ensure that the recipient will be there as scheduled. At times though, when you don’t have a set of plans, it would be best to let your invitees choose by giving them the option “what works best for them.”
    This will definitely be something in their favor as it will give them the option to decide where and when. You may even get a quicker response. For appointments with your boss or some higher-position personnel, you can add a calendar and give them the option to pick the date.
  • RSVP request
    There are many cases where an individual receives an invitation letter for an event, and the host would later find out he didn’t have any plans to attend. This could be very frustrating and expensive. But you can easily avoid these situations by adding the RSVP request to the letter.
  • Closing
    Use closing remarks which will encourage the invitee to respond to your invitation. Instead of the too-familiar phrases for your closing, try using more encouraging lines. This will provide you with a better probability of getting a response to your letter with this phrase. Also, don’t forget to include your signature or email signature in your closing. Using one makes the letter a little bit more profound.

How can I write an invitation letter for US visa?

An invitation letter for Visa is a document composed by a legal resident or a citizen of one country confirming that they’re willing to accept into their residence a person from another country. The invitee could either be a family friend or a relative who will live with the host for the whole duration of their stay.

Bear in mind though, that even a formal invitation letter is not a guarantee that the applicant will receive a Visa.

There are other visa requirements that you need to fulfill such as the means of subsistence, proof that there are strong ties between the two countries, proof that the visa issued will be appropriately used. The applicant will also undergo the usual application process before receiving a visa.

For the issuance of a US tourist visa, the applicant will submit an invitation letter for Visa application. But as mentioned earlier, the invitation is not a guarantee for the issuance of a Visa and presenting this isn’t a requirement but is still advisable. The host will have to fulfill some specific requirements to make the letter of invitation valid:

  • Must be a lawful permanent resident or a citizen of the US
  • The applicant must be the host’s family member, relative, friend, boyfriend or girlfriend
  • Must have a place in the country that’s registered
  • Must have sufficient room to house the applicant

Composing an invitation letter for visa purposes may feel intimidating for both host and guest, but the process of composing one is not that difficult. Address the letter to a consular officer, an embassy official or the applicant himself. The applicant must be extremely meticulous where he must provide in the document all the necessary information such as:

  • The full name of the host
  • The date of birth of the host
  • The address and contact number of the host in the us
  • The occupation of the host
  • The status of the host in the us
  • A copy of a document which proves the status of the host in the us
  • The signature of the host
  • The full name of the applicant
  • The date of birth of the applicant
  • The address and contact number of the applicant
  • The relationship of the applicant to the host
  • The reason for the applicant’s trip
  • Specific dates which indicate how long the applicant plans to stay in the us
  • Specific details regarding the applicants living expenses and accommodation

Should you address the letter of invitation to the applicant, the tone of the letter doesn’t have to be too formal. This will indicate that the applicant and host have a close or friendly relationship.

Does an invitation letter need to be notarized?

There’s also the issue of notarization. Many people inquire if there’s a need to have sponsorship or invitation letters notarized. Many say they didn’t have their letters notarized while others say they have. There’s no specific answer to this inquiry. However, some countries expect you to have the letters notarized.

The best thing you can do is go through the Visa office’s requirements which will process your guest’s application. For instance, if you’re inviting your uncle from Beijing to visit you in New York, then you will have to look for the Visa office of the USA in China. From there, you can review the requirements. Also, keep in mind that the requirements may change every now and then. It is, therefore, a good idea to examine these requirements each time you compose an invitation letter.

Once you have found the site, go to the site’s Visa page and search for the requirements when applying for a Visa. Generally, what you need for Visa applications are in the form of a checklist. From this list, you can confirm which documents will need notarization. This may even include your invitation letter. But the best advice here is to have all of your documents notarized because this will show that the authenticity of the documents.


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