Save The Date Cards – To Send Or Not To Send?


Written by Eva Rutland | 12.07.16

'I love you' and 'I know' coffee mugs

To save the date or not to save the date… that is the question!

Okay, so I am remorselessly paraphrasing Shakespeare here, and as an ardent lifelong worshipper of the Bard, I feel like I’ve blasphemed a little (must go home and recite 20 sonnets – Shakespearean equivalent of Hail Marys – without any supper!).
Literary heresy aside though, this is a difficult question for a lot of couples.

Save The Date cards – what does etiquette suggest?

Local weddings

The traditional advice puts the answer at a rounded six months in advance, but ever the rule breaker of wedding planners, I don’t think that this is a must-do. It is another of those wedding conundrums that is very much up to the couple themselves. If you want to send your save the dates as soon as you book the venue, then why not? Who cares if it’s two years away?

We know the release date for the new Star Wars movies a couple of years in advance and people will schedule their lives around that, so are we saying that your wedding is not as exciting as an intergalactic familial battle between good and evil? Of course not! Although if you can get a couple of Ewoks as your page boys…………….be still my three-year-old Princess Leia wannabe heart!

Save The Dates for destination weddings

Destination weddings will always require more advanced notice as people will need to organise annual leave and potentially save up for the trip and accommodation, so my recommendation in that instance would be the sooner you can advise your guest list, the better.

Alternatively, if you are a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants kind of couple with friends and family to match, then you may not feel the need to do anything more than three months in advance – particularly if it’s a smaller, more intimate celebration – – but again, you know your guests best so employ your own discretion when making these decisions.

So when do you send out save the dates?

Overall, my general advice would be to make your own judgement call. Take into account the time of year that you are looking at. If it’s high profile such as Christmas, New Year, summer holidays etc… then you will probably need to give more notice than if it’s at say – the end of September.

The same goes for both location of the wedding and the guests. Do the majority of guests need to book accommodation or are most people going to be stumbling distance from home?

A final thought is that this provides you with a golden opportunity to reduce the guest list without hurting anyone’s feelings. I give you: “You mean you never received the ‘save the date’ I sent you?” “I know I posted it?” “I can’t believe you’re going away that week now, it’s such a shame!”. And with that simple expedient, say goodbye to his ex-girlfriend who he’s remained friends with but you never liked because let’s be fair, who the hell wears a bodycon bandage dress to a Thursday night pub quiz?! Can you imagine what she’d actually wear to the wedding?!

Check out our Pinterest gallery for some inspiration when choosing your Save The Date cards.

Also come back next week for a top #5 of unusual ways to save the date beside the standard cards!