Wedding Invitation Series 5: When to Send Out Wedding Invitations

If you missed the first post in this series, you can check it out here


Wedding invitations have come a long way, but one thing that hasn’t changed too much is invitation etiquette. Many of the rules that have existed generations ago still apply today. In our wedding invitations series, we’ve walked you through planning your invitations, how to write them, creating the design, how to address the envelopes, and now we’re going to walk you through the steps of sending out your wedding invitations.


One sure-fire way to make sure your guests are able to plan ahead for your wedding, is planning out your wedding invitations ahead of time. You should begin addressing your invitations at least three months prior to your wedding. More if you've got to get them out sooner, like with a destination wedding. If you're using a calligrapher, make sure to check with her before hand so that you know she's available. Don't forget to also ask when about what she needs and when (i.e. what your responsibilities are!), so that you can have everything done in time. 


So, when should you send out invitations for a Destination Wedding?

If you are having a destination wedding, invitations should be sent out months in advance to allow your guests to plan adequately. Flights, hotels and other logistics will have to be sorted out far in advance, so you should be sending out Save the Dates at least six months before! You may also want to think about doing this if a huge portion of your guest list will be traveling from afar.


When should you send out invitations for a Local Wedding?

If you are having a local wedding with most guests not traveling from far away, it is common to send your invitations about twelve to eight weeks before the wedding. You don’t want your invitation to immediately follow after the save-the-date, but you still want to send out your wedding invitations early enough that you don’t run into last minute problems with RSVPs.

Ask your venue and/or caterer when they will need the final head count, (this can be anywhere from a week before the wedding to four weeks before) then count back at least week to give yourself some time to track down any of your guests who haven’t replied. This will be the date for your RSVP deadline. Once you have this date in mind, count backwards four to six weeks and this will be the date you need to have your wedding invitations mailed by. If you are planning to send additional RSVPs as you receive “no” responses, make sure to add an additional two weeks from your mailing date so your guests whose invitations are sent later still have time to reply.


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