Do Not Send a Response in Outlook Calendar invites

A colleague recently showed me a nuance when it comes to using the Do Not Send a Response option when responding to an Outlook Calendar invite. I thought it was a good reminder on making sure everyone knows what happens when you respond in that way.

When you get a Calendar invite in your Outlook inbox, you have the following options to Accept, mark as Tentative, Decline, and Propose New Time:


The colleague was under the assumption that Do Not Send a Response meant that the organizer would see that you had declined when they look at their invites status, but they wouldn’t get an email pointing out that you declined.

After some research, they found that Do Not Send a Response means that the organizer gets NO record of whether you’ll attend or not. From the organizer’s perspective, it’s as if you haven’t responded yet. From your perspective, it’s gone from your calendar, and you can move on accordingly.

So… If you’re declining a meeting and you want the organizer to know you won’t be there, just click the Decline button and let the system send out the email. However, if you want to decline a meeting to get it off your calendar but the organizer doesn’t need to know whether you’ll be there or not (such as a Skype meeting for some training that doesn’t pertain to you), then use the Do Not Send a Response option.

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