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When To Send Save The Dates – And Other Save The Date Etiquette

You’ve chosen a date. You’ve booked your venue. Excitement levels are HIGH. Now feels like the time to start spreading the news far and wide about when the big day will be. You may choose to do this by chatting with your intended guests. Or, you may choose to do this with the first little piece of your wedding stationery. 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 it also helps to set the tone for the upcoming celebrations. Are you wondering when to send save the dates? Or do you just fancy some stunning stationery inspiration? Well, keep reading because we’ve got you covered.

Do You Need To Send Save The Dates?

The short answer is no. And as the Rock My Wedding ethos generally pertains, you don’t need to do anything on your wedding day that you don’t want to. If you have a short engagement, for instance, it might make more sense to just send out the main invitations. But if you have guests who have to travel to make your wedding, if you’re having a destination wedding or if you just want to give your guests as much of a chance as possible to make the big day… Then save the dates are an ideal way to give them the information they need at the early stages.

Who are you inviting?

It’s important to be clear about who you are sending a save the date to and to follow through with a formal invitation. The general assumption will be that you intend to invite this person to the whole day, rather than just the evening reception. Whilst the save the dates themselves don’t tend to include guests names, you can address the envelope to your intended guests. This can preempt any assumptions and give a clear indication of who in each household you intend to invite. On that note, it’s a good idea to include any plus ones on the envelope too (eg. “Ms Naughton and Guest”) so that your guests can be clear about who to involve in accommodation and/or travel arrangements. 

When To Send Save The Dates

Realistically you can do this as soon as you’ve booked your venue. But between 12 months and 6 months before your wedding day is best. With 9 months before being the ideal. This allows time for your guests to book any travel required, get days off work, arrange childcare if needed and save for the event (especially important for destination weddings or guests coming from afar). If you have guests travelling from the other side of the world, you could perhaps give them a verbal heads up as soon as the venue is booked but before the save the dates are sent out to give them plenty of time to book flights. 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 closer to 12 months before. This will prevent your guests from having to make unnecessarily expensive travel arrangements or struggling to find accommodation.

What To Include On Your Save The Dates

Save the dates can be beautifully simple. Include your names, wedding date and town or venue as a minimum. If you have a wedding website to give guests more ideas on accommodation or travel arrangements, you can include the URL too. It’s too early to include gift registry details (could be construed as cheeky!) or an order of the day though so keep these details for the wedding invitations that will follow. As for style, you can either have your save the dates form a part of your full wedding stationery suite. Or it can just be a stand-alone piece that reflects you and your partner to the people you love.

Did you know that every piece of beautiful stationery in this post was made by one of the talented wedding stationery designers on The List? For a complete stationery geek like myself, these designers are all the wedding invitation goals. So if you want to start your wedding stationery suite by wowing your guests with save the dates, or if you’re considering who will design the all-important invitations, then go to The List and browse the stationery section. You’ll find the very best, handpicked designers there. 

2 thoughts on “When To Send Save The Dates – And Other Save The Date Etiquette

  1. We didn’t send Save the Dates as we’re having a teensy wedding weekend and so checked with all our family verbally first, but then had to follow up with an invitation sooner than we otherwise would have done for a regular wedding.

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