What to Include On Your Save the Dates
When planning a wedding, two of the first decisions couples usually make are choosing a venue and setting a date (after hiring a wedding planner of course!). And that means sending out a save the date is often next on the to-do list. These are typically sent out around six or seven months before the big day, sometimes more in the case of destination weddings.
But what about couples getting engaged during the Coronavirus pandemic? First of all, congratulations! Even though it may feel like everything is on hold at the moment, there’s no reason why you can’t get started with your wedding planning, especially if you’re having a longer engagement. While you’ll need to remain flexible and know that your plans may have to evolve, don’t hold off on sharing the good news with your family and friends or on putting initial plans into place. In fact, it’s even more important to give your guests notice of your wedding, and keep them informed!
Compared to the invitations, save the dates serve more as a heads up to your guests about your upcoming nuptials. They’re meant to be short and simple, but they still need to include some important information. Here are seven things you always need on your save the dates, and an extra for these extraordinary times.
Your names. This may sound obvious, but your names are a must. These can be full names or just first names depending on your style. For heterosexual couples, the bride’s name traditionally goes first. For same-sex couples, you can choose any order.
The wedding date(s). The date is the most important piece of info – after all, that’s why you’re sending out save the dates in the first place! This will allow guests to mark your celebration off on their calendars and make any necessary travel or work arrangements. Make sure the wedding date (or dates, if it’s a destination wedding weekend) are clearly visible. You don’t need to include the ceremony time at this stage.
The location. You don’t need to include the actual venue here. (In fact, it can be fun to save the big reveal for the actual invitations!) However, you should include the city and state (or country). Destination weddings may present additional uncertainty, so give this information at this stage for travel purposes.
Your wedding website URL. Having a wedding website has always been a great idea, but right now, it’s essential. It allows you to communicate effectively with your guests and give them up-to-the-minute information. It also creates a platform for you to give them details that should not be on the save the dates, like registry information and hotel accommodations. The venues and event times (if available) can also on the website at this time.
The next step. To avoid guests thinking that your save the date is the invitation, it’s a good idea to include a note that they can expect the invitation to come later. Something simple like “formal invitation to follow” is perfect.
Personality! It’s always a good idea to add a personal touch to your save the dates if you can. Whether that’s a photo of the two of you or something that speaks of your love story, your guests will appreciate it. You can go for a completely stand-alone, quirky design or fit in with the look and feel of your invitations. It’s up to you! No rules here.
Your return address. One mistake many couples make is not including their return address somewhere on the save the date card, especially if it’s a postcard. However, if one of the cards doesn’t reach the recipient, you’ll want to know so that you can reach out to them in another way.
A note about changing plans. It’s a good idea to include a special note alerting guests that plans may change in light of COVID-19 developments. Direct them to your website for updates and let them know that you are planning with their wellbeing in mind!
Need more advice on when and how to send your save the dates? Have a look at these dos and don’ts of save the date etiquette.
Image by Norman & Blake