Believe it or not, save the dates are fairly new as far as wedding traditions go. They have become popular in today’s culture largely because they offer so many different benefits for engaged couples (and their guests). Life is busy and schedules are often packed with vacations, birthdays, and other weddings. Giving your guests advance notice about your big day is to your benefit as well. So, are save the dates necessary? Keep reading for 16 reasons why we think they are.
1. You’re having a destination wedding
There is a lot that goes into planning a destination wedding, including your guests’ plans and arrangements to be there to celebrate with you. Advance notice is great to give them time to look into the costs for travel and accommodations and balance them against their budget to see if it’s even possible for them to attend. Some guests will need ample time to budget for a trip out of town, especially if it’s somewhere abroad or exotic.
2. You get more time to send invites
Since you’re sending out a notice well in advance of your wedding and giving your guests plenty of lead time, you’ll give yourself more time before having to send out your actual wedding invitations. You can push that invite date until you’re six weeks out from your ceremony, but we don’t recommend trying to squeeze that time frame any further. Remember, guests still need time to respond and RSVP. Sending save the dates also allows your guests to make their travel plans early.
3. You can start collecting mailing addresses
Part of creating a guest list is collecting email and (if needed), mailing addresses for your guests. With Paperless Post save the dates, you can easily collect mailing addresses to use for your print invitations. Getting this done early takes a huge weight off your shoulders and frees up time for you to focus on the more fun aspects of wedding planning, such as venue tours and cake tastings. Once you need to send out wedding invitations, you’ll have everyone’s contact information ready to go.
4. Think of save the dates as a test run
Save the dates are a great way to test a theme and design elements that you like. You get to experiment, have a little fun with them, and see what you love and don’t love before incorporating that into your wedding invitation designs. There’s no need to stress about having your save the dates exactly match your wedding invitations. Save the dates can be different in design as long as they share the same vibe overallGuests get advance notice on the date
5. Guests get advance notice on the date
With busy lives, many families need plenty of time to make arrangements to attend a wedding. A save the date puts your wedding on their radar and gives them time to plan to be there.
6. Guests will know they are invited
Save the dates eliminate any question as to who is invited to your wedding. If you send a save the date, proper save the date etiquette means they’ll receive a formal invitation later. Just make sure to be clear on exactly who you’re inviting. Address each person by name so there is no one left wondering if they can bring a friend, child, or date. For more tips on how to phrase your message, check out our guide to save the date wording.
7. Guests can plan around other commitments
Another nice thing about sending save the dates and giving your guests notice is that they can plan around any other commitments. This is especially helpful if you are planning a wedding during major holidays. Schedules book up quickly and by sending guests a save the date six to eight months out, they have plenty of time to decide if it’s possible to be there, and if they have to cancel or reschedule another commitment to attend your wedding.
8. Guests can make necessary arrangements
Additionally, guests with plenty of notice from a save the date can start researching and booking travel arrangements and accommodations if they plan to attend. Often, flights and hotels are cheaper the earlier you book, so they can hunt around for deals, especially if you aren’t planning on providing a discounted room block.
9. You can show off your personality
Sending save the dates means you get to show off a little personality. Remember, they don’t have to match your wedding theme exactly. You can get creative with them and experiment with what you like most. You can use fun, casual language, or keep it elegant with save the dates that are more formal in style and wording.
10. They’re a great way to use engagement photos
Did we mention engagement photos? If you didn’t have an excuse to do an engagement photo shoot already, now you do. Save the dates are a great way to show them off to friends and family. You can even ask the photographer to help you come up with creative shots specifically for your save the date photoshoot. You can feature several of them collage-style or pick your very favorite as the featured image.
11. You can experiment with design
“Farmhouse Flower” by Paperless Post
Along with creative props and photos, you can experiment with different design elements. From font style and lettering to color palettes and layout, you can have a lot of fun with this. Try adding different elements that make them a little extra special to generate excitement with friends and family. Save the dates are a wonderful expression of creativity.
12. You can showcase your wedding theme
While save the dates do not have to match your wedding theme, some couples like them to reflect their chosen theme to give guests a tiny glimpse into what they can expect when they attend the wedding. If you send a formal, elegant save the date, guests have a clue that your wedding will be formal and elegant, too.
13. It feels more official when you send one
Are you even getting married if you haven’t shouted it from the rooftops yet? Save the dates are like an announcement to the world that you’ve decided to tie the knot with your special someone. It’s official and once you send a save the date, it feels official. A wedding is a celebration and sending save the dates gives you another chance to share the exciting news.
14. It’s a great digital keepsake for everyone
Friends and family will love receiving an online save the date because it’s a lovely digital keepsake they can save for years to come. Plus, it’s environmentally friendly. If friends and family decide to print it out, it will look great in scrapbooks and photo albums. If you include your engagement photos, friends and family will be excited to get a sneak peek at those as well. Not only that, they make great digital keepsakes for you too. There are a lot of memories created during a wedding, and save the date cards are an excellent keepsake you can cherish for years to come.
15. It’s a wonderful way to create buzz
Obviously a wedding is a celebration. Save the dates can be a wonderful way to connect with your guests early and start generating buzz around your big day. You want everyone to be excited to share the moment with you and if it looks like a great time, they will be more inclined to make sure their schedule is free. Save the date cards are also a great way to direct wedding guests to your wedding website.
16. Save the Dates are for your guests
Finally, one last thing to keep in mind. Even though they feature your photos and creativity, ultimately sending save the dates is about letting your guests know you’re getting married. Save the dates are an excellent way to honor them and give them plenty of advance notice about your upcoming nuptials.
So, do you have to send save the dates? No, of course not. But should you send save the dates? Yes, we absolutely think so! Get started with our wide selection of wedding-worthy designs.