Outlook: Respond to a Meeting Invitation

Before you start...

When you receive a meeting invitation in Microsoft Outlook, you can respond to the meeting to accept, decline, or indicate that you are tentatively attending.

Meeting invitations will come to your inbox like an email message and will appear as events in your calendar that you need to respond to. Meeting invitations can be opened like emails and calendar events and contain a subject line, information on the people who sent and received the meeting invitation, and any further information on the meeting in the text area below. In addition to responding to the meeting invitation, you can also respond with an email to the meeting organizer or other recipients of the invitation.

For information on how to schedule your own meeting, see the Create and Schedule a Meeting help page.

Responding to a Meeting Invitation

  1. Open the meeting invitation by double-clicking on the invitation in Mail or on the appointment in Calendar.
    In the ribbon are several options for responding to the meeting:
    • Accept: You can attend; Outlook will put the meeting on your calendar.
    • Tentative: You may be able to attend; Outlook will put the tentative meeting in your calendar.
    • Decline: You cannot attend; Outlook will not put the meeting into your calendar.
    • Propose New Time: You can propose a new time to the meeting organizer; if you tentatively accept and propose a new time, Outlook will put the meeting into your calendar.
    • Respond: Send an email message to the meeting organizer; Outlook puts the meeting in your calendar as tentative and notes that you still need to respond.
  2. Click on one of the options above. A dropdown menu will appear.
  3. Select one of the options from the dropdown menu:
    • Edit the Response before Sending: If you select this option below Accept, Tentative, or Decline, you will have the option to write a message to the meeting organizer along with the response that you are accepting, tentatively attending, or declining.
    • Send the Response Now: If you select this option below Accept, Tentative, or Decline, an automatic response will be sent to the meeting organizer telling them which option you selected.
    • Do not Send a Response: If you select this option below Accept, Tentative, or Decline, Outlook will record your response in the meeting (i.e. show whether you accepted, declined, or tentatively accepted), but no additional response will be sent to the meeting organizer.
    • Propose a New Time: If you select one of the responses below Propose New Time, a new scheduling window will open so you can choose a new time to propose to the meeting organizer.
  4. If you chose an option that opens a message window, make any changes to the message and click [Send].

Keywords: meeting request, request a meeting, request meeting response, RSVP, attend a meeting, put a meeting on the calendar

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