Save the dates are a brief invitation that let your guests know that they are invited to your wedding, what the date and general location will be, and that more details are to follow. There are many reasons why save the dates are great to incorporate into your wedding stationery, but they are not mandatory and may not work with every timeline (or wedding budget). Here are some important things to consider when deciding if save the dates should be on your wedding planning list of to-do’s!
They give your guests advanced notice.
Your best chance of high attendance is to give your guests a heads up with a save the date. This is extremely important if you’re having a destination wedding or a lot of out of towners. You want to give your guests enough time to take time off from work, make travel arrangements, and save up if need be. If you have a wedding website set up, your save the date is a great place to include that info so guests can check back for more details and suggestions. Even if your guests are local, people’s calendars fill up quickly with other commitments (especially during the summer months or over holiday weekends). Marking their calendar with your wedding date will give guests a chance to say no to other events that may come up over the upcoming months.
Save the dates should also only be sent to your definite “A-List” family and friends. Everyone who receives it MUST also get a wedding invitation. On the flip side, if you are looking to DECREASE attendance at your wedding, we recommend NOT sending out save the dates.
They are an additional expense.
Save the dates are of course an additional expense you’ll have to incur, from designing them to printing and mailing them out. Be sure to price out everything first to see if you can factor them into your overall wedding budget.
They are a wonderful keepsake.
Save the dates are a great way to show off those engagement pictures, and your guests will have something to keep with a picture of the two of you. You can also request for your photographer to photograph your save the dates on the wedding day along with your other wedding stationery.
They work well with longer engagements.
It all comes down to your timeline. Save the dates are typically sent out 6 months before your wedding date (sooner if you are having a destination wedding or a lot of out of town guests), and a formal invitation is sent out two months prior to the big day. If your engagement timeline is on the shorter side, there may not be time to send out both save the dates and formal invitations. If you find yourself in this situation, you can always call or text the people you really want to attend, just so that they still get a heads up that your wedding date has been set.
Dani Purington Photography