Friends who are coming to town invite me to dinner; unsure if I can that night because of work, so OK to invite them on another date?
OK to be honest with them and say, "I'd love to, but I have a big work deadline then. I am free now, but would not want to cancel at the last minute. May I take you to breakfast on such-and-such a date?"
I assume that it'd be rude to say, "Maybe, so put me down as a 'tentative'" or something--I assume that I need to accept and stick with it, or decline?
I also assume that it's fine to offer a counter-invitation to another meal on a different date (with me paying, even though they always pay for dinner)?