Weddings

How to Ask Guests to Save the Date for a Destination Wedding

Destination weddings require planning on the guest's end -- help them attend your wedding

By Julie Hampton

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Asking guests to save the date for a destination wedding is easy with save the date announcements. Destination weddings usually are planned a year or more before the ceremony, allowing guests more time to plan their travel and itineraries. Traditionally, destination weddings are smaller ceremonies and include close friends and family members, according to Invite Site, a wedding invitation company. Save the date announcements can be fun and creative, giving guests a glimpse into what the ceremony will be like long before they receive the formal wedding invitation.

  • What You Need to Know
  • Creating a timeline or schedule can help guests stay on top of planning for your wedding
  • Destination weddings involve planning for guests as well: make it easy for them to plan by giving them all the information they need.
  • Lock down a date only after discussing your plans with venues and caterers. That will minimize the need to change the date after having notified guests.

Step 1:

Create save the date announcement cards, either by printing them at home or having them printed by a company that produces wedding invitations. Cards do not have to have a formal look -- be creative. Cards should include at very least the first and last names of the couple and the wedding date and location. The cards also can include information about hotels, nearby airports and additional activities planned around the wedding. Include the couple's wedding website or blog, if applicable.

Step 2:

Do not include too much information on the save the date card. The simpler the better; guests should not confuse the save the date announcement with the formal invitation. Include the phrase "invitation to follow" on the save the dates to make the distinction clear. Send save the dates only to guests who will also receive a formal invitation.

Step 3:

Incorporate other creative ideas to announce the destination wedding. For example: For a beach wedding, send message-in-a-bottle announcements. Roll the announcements in a plastic bottle, add an address label directly to the bottle, fill with sand and seashells, apply stamps directly to the bottle, and mail as is. The save the date also can be printed on or made into a magnet for guests to place on their refrigerators. Or, make stickers for guests to add to their planners. Another idea is to use a photo of the bride and groom holding up a sign that reads "Save the date."

Step 4:

A wedding website or blog can be a huge help when it comes to dealing with destination weddings. The website can be used to update guests on any changes to wedding plans or about additional arrangements. You can also use the site to include information on travel requirements (passports, vaccinations, currency), travel arrangements or even just information on the location and event activities. Collect guests' email addresses and send a note to all guests whenever the blog is updated.

  • Tips & Warnings
  • Provide contact information for travel agents/services and hotels so guests can handle their own travel and lodging.
  • Transportation information such as car rental and shuttles from the airport to hotel can be provided at a later date and should not be included on the save the date cards.
  • Add a handwritten note for extra personalization.
  • Remind guests of passport, visa and other legal requirements and safety concerns if traveling to a foreign country particularly as the date draws near.

About the Author

Julie Hampton is a regular contributor to DexKnows.

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