If you want loved ones at the church on time, you better send those save the dates out, pronto!
You've got your wedding date, and you've booked a venue. You're pretty excited. It is officially starting to feel real. And, now feels like the right time to start spreading the news about your big day. But is this the correct time? Is it too early? Too late? When should you send save the dates? It can be a confusing time, and stressful, wondering when and how to time things correctly.
If you are intending to get married in 2023, 2024, or beyond, we suggest that you certainly do send save the dates, be that in digital form, or in print. Just to avoid any clashes or disappointments for you and your loved ones.
Sending out a physical save the date is a great way to not only help your guests remember to pop the date on the calendar, but you'll also be setting the tone for the upcoming celebrations.
But when should you send save the dates? Read on to get the answers to all your questions about etiquette concerning the first piece of wedding stationery you'll send out.
Do You Need to Send Save the Dates?
Despite our argument that now is the most critical time to give your guests a heads-up on your wedding date, the short answer is no. This is your wedding, and you can do whatever you want. Furthermore, not every wedding timeline is the same. You could be tying the knot in 2/3 months, and should therefore save the dates altogether, and just send an invitation. Or you could be having a micro wedding, and for you, it's just as easy to talk to people individually.
If you do have guests who need to travel to your wedding, or you're having a destination wedding, then save the dates are an ideal way to provide people with the information they need early on.
In general, sending a save the date, will make you more successful with RSVP's. As your guests can immediately block out the dates of your nuptials, well in advance. It's also nice to create a bit of a buzz around the event too!
What to Include on Your Save the Dates
The beauty in save the dates, is their simplicity. You only need to include the essential information. Names, wedding date and location (preferably the venue, but if not, the general area will do). If you have a wedding website to give guests more ideas on accommodation or travel arrangements, you should include the address too.
Your gift list and order of the day will come later, and can be included on your main invitation. And/or wedding website.
When it comes to style, most couples prefer to hint at the style of the big day by having the save the dates form a part of the wedding stationery set, or suite. This helps to get people excited about the occasion, and start dreaming up how it will look. However, if you'd rather this pre-invite is standalone in its style, that's fine too.
When Should You Send Save the Dates?
If you're getting married locally, six to eight months before your wedding is an appropriate time to send save the dates. If it can be slightly earlier than eight months, then even better. Local or not, people may still need to make travel arrangements, and they may also need to move things around in their lives, in order to attend your wedding.
If you have guests travelling from abroad, you could perhaps give them a call as soon as the venue is booked, before the save the dates are even sent. This courtesy call will allow them plenty of time to book flights, and maybe even get a better deal on the trip.
Likewise, if the area you intend on getting married in sees a rush in tourism around the time of your wedding date, you may want to send save the dates out closer to 12 months before. This will prevent your guests from having to make unnecessarily expensive travel arrangements or struggling to find accommodation.