Michelle Nicole, wedding and event planner, suggests sending out your wedding invites 2-3 months prior to your wedding and requiring RSVP’s 3.5 weeks before your wedding. This helps you to plan your seating chart, favors, meals, and alcohol numbers. To me, these are just suggestions and if you think it’ll be better for yourself or your guests to send out invites sooner than 2-3 months, go for it!
Here’s how my timeline on save the dates and invites personally have gone (remember my wedding is in California and probably 90% of our guests are coming from one of these places: New Zealand, London, Spain, Minnesota, or Arizona). I had several guests asking specifics (where to stay, what to do, when it was, how to get there, etc) so I chose to send my invites out as soon as I could along with a wedding website. Our invites and save the dates were also sent via email because of the distance between all our guests. We also have a “backup” list of people we really want there but don’t have the budget for as of now. I told my guests that our RSVP date is just preferred but I wasn’t strict on it because it’s so far in advance.
Burke wedding date: September 14th 2019
Burke wedding save the dates sent on: around October 27th-28th 2018
Burke wedding invites sent on: December 10th 2018
RSVP date: June 14th 2019 (three months prior – but most of our guests will know by then anyways)
Number of yes’s as of today: 29
Number of no’s as of today: 0
When sending invites here are a few things to not forget:
- Brides name goes FIRST and then grooms name.
- If parents are contributing, it is traditional to include them in the invite (sample below). Not needed especially if mentioned on your wedding website instead (which is what we did).
- Check postage cost before fully committing to a style of card
- Proofread – over and over again!
- Get a custom stamp with your names/address to save time
- If you’re not putting in the guest’s names on the RSVP card for them, number the RSVP and keep track of who you sent it to (small in the corner or somewhere that isn’t visible to guests). I have seen SO many times that guests forget to label who is attending and then you have no way of knowing who sent that RSVP.
- Include a stamp on all your RSVP cards so guests don’t have to.
- If you’re having a wedding website, include instructions / the link to go check it out. This can also be a great way for guests to RSVP.
- Print extra invites (one for a keepsake, one to be photographed at your wedding with all your other little details, some for extra guests if you have a backup list like us, etc).
- If you’re not printing invites, still print one for yourself, your grandparents, and your parents.
- Stick to the style of your save the dates / style of your wedding.
- Be specific about who is invited (plus ones, just the named guests, children, etc).
- If you’re not having a wedding website or other place for guests to find out more information, include all other applicable information such as meal choices, dietary restrictions, guest accommodation, bar situation (cash bar, open bar, no alcohol, BYO, etc), transportation, dress code, parking availability, if it’s accessible by uber/taxi/lyft, gift registry, location/address, map if needed, ceremony time, brief schedule if reception doesn’t follow the ceremony, contact information, things to do in the area, etc. Most of this will go on a separate “details” card you’ll need to order/provide.
- Purchase matching thank you cards ahead of time (one less thing to figure out later) unless you want your thank you cards to use your wedding photographs.
Mary Taylor <3