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Save the date etiquette you need to know

If you’re unsure where to start, then we’ve got you covered with all you need to know about ‘save the date’ card etiquette.

By LLM Reporters  |  January 26, 2022
Hands of newlyweds with wedding rings and a wedding bouquetf

When it comes to planning the finer details of your wedding, the list of tasks you need to tick off can often feel endless. Add to that the worry that important guests might not be able to make it if you take too long to get the invitations out, and the race against the clock to confirm the venue, caterers and flowers can quickly leave you feeling anxious, stressed and overwhelmed.

The good news, though, is that there is a tradition you can take advantage of to take the pressure off, and to ensure that your family and friends keep the date free even before you’re ready to send out official invitations. Save the date cards can be distributed just as soon as you have a day selected for the ceremony, giving you all the time you need to plan your big moment at a more relaxed pace. After all, it’s one of the most important occasions of your life, and you deserve to enjoy the process as well as the day itself.

Sending unique and beautiful save the date cards is a great way to start drumming up some excitement for the nuptials ahead, and will give guests a taste of what’s to come. Selecting a luxury stationer that specialises in wedding invitations will be a great help if you’re looking for customisable cards, as they will work with you to come up with the perfect design and have them printed for you so that all you have to do is pick them up – or wait for them in the post.

If you’re unsure where to start, then we’ve got you covered with all you need to know about ‘save the date’ card etiquette.

Is it necessary to send wedding save the date cards?

If you are looking at a long engagement that is more than six months, then sending out ‘save the date’ cards is a particularly good idea. As you don’t have control over your guests’ schedules, it’s best to send them a solid notification of your upcoming wedding a few months in advance, as people’s diaries can quickly get booked up if you don’t. If you are working with a stationer for your save the dates and bespoke luxury wedding invitations, they will be able to help you in strategically timing the delivery to ensure your guests receive both cards at the right times.

Save the date wedding invite
Save-the-dates serve as an official announcement of your wedding date and location.

If, on the other hand, you plan to get married relatively quickly following your engagement, then it can be more time efficient to simply let people know, and work on getting the official invitations out as soon as possible. Otherwise, turning your attention to save the date cards could end up delaying this part of the process, which is arguably one of the most important.

When is the perfect time to send save the dates to your guests?

It is recommended that you start sending out your save the dates at least six months before your wedding date. However, if you are planning a destination wedding, it is well-advised to have the cards delivered eight to twelve months before your big day, as guests will need additional time to schedule their own flights and accommodation and likely work on fitting a slightly longer period of time into their schedules to allow for it all.

Check out luxury stationery company Pemberly Fox (pemberlyfox.com/collections/luxury-wedding-invitations) if you’re still looking for sophisticated design inspirations for your wedding invitations.

Can I send out wedding save the dates via email?

If you’re keen on keeping waste to a minimum, it’s fine to go ahead and send your wedding save the dates through email. However, this delivery channel is only ideal for close friends and family members, who are less likely to forget about your wedding, anyway! Ideally, you should send wedding save the date cards to all family and friends you wish to see on your wedding day, as not only will these be more impactful, but they can be pinned on notice boards or stuck to fridges to keep the event date at the front of your guests’ minds. They also make for lovely keepsakes for after the wedding has passed, and your guests can hold onto them for years to come as a reminder of your beautiful day.

Dos and don’ts of wedding save the dates

Do:

  • It might sound obvious, but be sure to include yours and your fiance’s names to make it clear to the recipient exactly who is getting married – just in case there is any doubt!
  • Most importantly of all, include the wedding date to tell your guests when the wedding will be taking place so that they can block the day or week out in their diaries.
  • Be sure to let guests know where you will be tying the knot so that they can make any necessary travel and accommodation arrangements in advance.
  • Include a short note letting your guests know that a formal wedding invitation will follow. 
Save the date wedding invite
Sending unique and beautiful save the date cards is a great way to start drumming up some excitement for the nuptials ahead, and will give guests a taste of what’s to come

Don’t

  • Include the exact name of your venue. While it is essential to include the general location in which you’ll be walking down the aisle, it’s not yet time to share the venue’s name. Firstly, issues may arise during the wedding planning stage and force you to consider switching to a new venue, and secondly, omitting the information from your save the date cards gives you more time to plan. Once you have finalised a venue booking, you can indicate this on your formal wedding invitation.
  • Include ceremony and reception times. Again, these are unlikely to have been finalised at this early stage of planning, and save the date cards are all about giving you some breathing space to plan. 
  • Place registry information. If you’re looking to exude luxury at the onset of your wedding planning, don’t include your registry information on the invite, as some may consider doing so to be tacky. 

Don’t forget to send a memorable treat with your save the date invites

Since save the dates only include a few critical pieces of information about your wedding, they are usually printed on small items of stationery – so to make the delivery more exciting and add a personal touch, consider including a little treat for your guests as a taste of what’s to come. Sending out a box of macarons, croissants, and other French patisseries together with your save the date card, for example, is a lovely gesture that will make your guests feel more valued and excited to attend your wedding. 

Of course, there are plenty of other options, too – from flowers and foliage to sweet treats – so don’t be afraid to have fun with this bit and get creative.