Trying to get all your friends together can be like herding cats - freaking impossible. So imagine trying to get a few dozen mates together. You want the bulk of your nearest and dearest to make it to your wedding (or not, depending on how the budget is panning out!). So how do you go about pinning them down for that VID (Very Important Date)? By sending out a Save the Date of course. A Save the Date gives your wedding guests a heads up that you've set a wedding date, that they're invited, and indicates the location, so they can begin planning annual leave and budgeting for attending.
Now this all sounds very sensible and reasonable, but despite the practical nature of these pieces of wedding stationery, there are a few out there who ask "Are Save the Dates a waste of money, or a must-have?". And as a wedding stationer, my answer might surprise you:
Are Save the Dates a waste of money?
In many cases, Save the Dates are absloutely must have. Save the date cards are vital to send when:
- guests have to travel - they live very far away from where you are going to get married
- guests have serious commitments that they will need to negotiate time off for if they are going to be able to attend
- if you choose to have a destination wedding, your guests will need plenty of time to sort out passports, visas and flights for your big day
- Weddings that are close to important holidays or long weekends will also need save the date cards, to make sure that your guests don't plan anything else
- You're not going to get your wedding invitations sent till very close to the wedding (say, 6 weeks before), so want to "buy yourself some time"
(Note: if you love the Save the Date above, this is available from Be My Guest, here)
Yet sometimes Save the Dates are a waste of money. Here's when you should skip them:
- If your engagement and your wedding are very close together – say, within nine months of each other – there is really no point in sending out save the date cards, because you'll be sending out wedding invitations before you know it!
- When the bulk of your wedding guests are local to the wedding location and it's not on a holiday weekend, then you can skip the Save the Dates.
- If your wedding budget is particularly tight, then Save the Date cards are one thing that you can afford to lose.
Save on your Save the Date with these strategic ideas
Many people are deciding to send around a save the date email to those that they need to inform, saving themselves a little bit of money. You can also choose to send a Save the Date to only a few guests - sending to only those guests who live far away, will need time to save, or may have trouble getting the time off.
You want to be sure to send Save the Dates to guests who you are certain you want to attend - read up on what happens when you have to cut the wedding budget but the Save the Dates had already gone out.
If you do decide to send out Save the Dates, make sure you're not making mistakes. I've covered off 5 things to avoid when sending Save the Dates in a post here.
Do you think Save the Dates are a waste of money?
What's your thoughts? Are you rethinking sending Save the Dates - are you happy to give them a miss? Or do you think they're essential?