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Wedding planning guide: Save the dates and how to send them

Save the date Cards are the perfect way to announce your wedding dates to your guests, while you are still deciding on the venue

Lara Barakat

Published: Updated:

There is a ring on your finger and you are eager to start planning your dream wedding. After announcing your engagement to the nearest and dearest of your friends, it is time to sit down with your future spouse and choose a wedding date. Once you have complete that task, you’ll need to inform your guests, so they can keep that date free.

In other words, you’re going to need to send your guests pre-wedding invitations, commonly referred to as save the date cards.

What are save the date Cards?

The perfect way to announce your wedding dates to your guests, while you are still deciding on the venue.

Reasons why save the date cards are helpful:

• Creative and Fun: Nowadays there are so many different techniques you can use to create cards (We recommend you research on Pinterest before deciding). If you are feeling creative include a DIY touch to your cards, this can also be a fun task for you and your future spouse to do.
• Early RSVP: Some guests may inform you of their attendance once they check their diaries.
• Helps the budget: Some guests may have prior arrangements on that date; therefore, you will save on sending wedding invitations.

Save the date etiquette

Timing is key:

Getting started; it would be ideal to send out your Save the Date cards as soon as you know your wedding date with a minimum of 6 months to spare (If sent earlier they will forget, and if sent later they likely won’t attend). Especially if you are hosting a destination wedding or if you have guests travelling from abroad, this would give them enough time to plan their journey, take holidays and organise finances.

Pick and choose

You don’t have to send a card to everyone, only to the guests you want to guarantee the attendance of, for example close family members can be informed over the phone or in person. You may find yourself in a sticky situation if you don’t specify exactly whose invited on the cards, it’s best to be clear from the start by including the actual names of every intended guest on the envelope. Therefore, your invited guests have plenty of time to arrange babysitters for their little ones.

Content

It is understandable that you may not have all your wedding details at the time you send out your save the date cards. It’s hard to know what content to include on your cards, and what to save for your formal invitations.

Include:

• Name of the couple
• Wedding date
• Location (Even if the venue is not booked yet).
• A notice to state that a formal invitation will follow (You don’t want your guests confusing these cards for your wedding invitations).

There is no need to mention RSVP instructions at this stage, if you have a wedding website you may want to include that on your card but it is not necessary. We also would not advise including your wedding registry details on save the date cards, even if some guests are wondering where you’re registered, they can ask your bridal party or family members to stay in the loop.

Choosing your wedding Stationary:

Some suppliers offer discounts when you purchase your entire wedding stationary from them, this, however, doesn’t mean that your cards must match your wedding invitations. Save the date cards are considered less formal than wedding invitations so it’s time to let your creativity shine, feel free to experiment with colours, fonts and patterns. Keep your guests wondering what your wedding invitations will look like.

Unforeseen circumstances

Plans change all the time, especially when it comes to planning a wedding. It is highly unlikely that you change your wedding date or location, but if this were to happen and you have already delivered your cards rather than enduring the cost of printing new ones, and over confusing your guests. Revert to contacting each guest using the best possible method, to tackle a large guest list consider assigning tasks to your bridesmaids.