Just got all our invite DIY stuff in the mail! Excited to start putting stuff together! How early would you want to receive an invitation for a destination wedding?
Ours is in California, but in a "destination" none of us live... about 30% of the guests will drive/fly 1-2 hours, and 70% will drive/fly 5-7 hours. We expect 100% of our guests to be getting hotels and at least half to fly in. So it's not like island-destination, but it's still going to require everyone to plan and budget and book ahead. Also it will be "high season" and a Saturday night wedding, so all the good hotels are going to be full in advance.
Personally I'm a big planner, I book my flights 2-3 months out from any trip..sometimes as much as 6 months out if prices look good. But I'd expect most people don't do this... Sooo...when should I send the invite? How early can I ask for RSVPs? STD's will go out 8 months in advance...but I expect a few people may be getting invitations that didn't get an STD because we're planning to invite a few more after we confirm some no's we're expecting from elderly familiy members...
Honestly, if it takes that long to drive or fly there I'd asy more than 5 months...
I'm having a Caribbean island destination wedding and 1/2 of my guest list is flying in. Im sening STDs 8-6 months before the wedding, then sending formal invites 2-3 months before. You can find fairly cheap STDs online. Hope this helps!
I would send out save the dates as early as possible and follow up with invites 9 months out, it is a lot of planning. We sent our STDs 12 months out, and Invites 8 months out for a DW.
I think the earlier for the invites the better.....although don't make your RSVP date months in advance. It's hard for a lot of people to plan that far in advance (my DH for example) but if at least they know something is going on for that timeframe, they can "pencil" it in on their calendar.
Plus a lot can happen between getting a STD/invite to a wedding 6 months out....DH's BF couldn't come to our DW b/c his wife got pregnant 5 months before our wedding. He had pretty much told us that he'd be there (he was gonna be the best man) but by the time they found out (when our invites went out) he changed his mind....which we completely understood.
Since you're sending out save-the-dates, I think 3 months out is fine.
I'd like at least 6 months, actually. The physical invitation isn't as important as your informing me that I'm invited in enough advance that I can start making plans. A save the date or even a heartfelt phone call is enough to get me planning and requesting vacay.
I did the same as @Imean: . I am also having a Caribbean destination wedding and sent STDs out 8 months out and will be sending my invites out this month. People have to put in for time off work and stuff and plan. It's a good thing, earlier the better
I voted for 5 months. An additional option would be to do "save the dates" 8-12 months in advance. Perhaps this would give your guests more time to save up and plan :)
@nyota256, I'm having a caribbean destination wedding, too!
I'm in a similar situation as you - the wedding is where I live, and all my guests (my family and FILs) will be flying in. I sent my STDs in June for a March wedding, and I will be sending my invitations in mid-January (2 months early). Most of my guests have already booked the hotel and fligths off of the information with the STD, so there's no need to send an invitation 5 months early.
I did STds 10 months out, invites 4 months out. I found it helpful to send the invites around then as it kicked some butts into gear for booking their trips before all the good flights etc are gone.
I'd send out invites approximately 5-6 months in advance.
I am not a fan of STDs - but in this case, I think it's necessary! I'm a planner as well and I wouldn't book a last-minute DW. I would need at least 6 months, especially to see if I could arrange the time around my job (I'm a teacher and just about never take off additional time aside from our vacations).
I am getting married In Mexico. I am sending out std 10 Month in advance. Just because so many of my friends are getting married and I like to give everyone enough time to save up.
I would say 5 months at the very minimum. Depending on your location and the time of year people really need to book things like flights and hotels early on to get the best rates. I am planning to send out my destination wedding save the dates about 1 year out and invitations about 8-9 months out.
I say STDs 8-12 months in advacne, but the actual invitation 4 months in advance TOPS. Which date do you plan to make your RSVP date? If you have too long of a time frame between getting the invitation and mailing the RSVP, people will just let it get buried.
Poeple don't need an actual invitation to know they are invited, they will (or should!) know they are invited by getting the STD and hence start booking/saving accordingly.
Since you're sending save the dates, I think 3 months is fine, with RSVP 6 weeks before. That gives you 2+ weeks to hunt down the stragglers!
The sooner the better! I'd go out even further than 5 months if you could.
wow... I agree, but I'm surprised everyone else thinks early is the way to go!
@sienna76: This is one of my worries, that if we send the invites early the RSVP date will just allow it to "get buried".
I'd love to put the RSVP date 8 weeks out...but I feel like maybe that's pushing it so I was gonna do 6 weeks out. I'm not really sure what the DW RSVP protocol is... I think we're gonna give the option of RSVPing on the website as well as by the postcard in the invite. I'm hoping this will double our chances of getting responses early.
@waitingwonderland: Back when I had a DW planned, the caterer needed a head count 2 weeks prior to the wedding date. Then I made the RSVP date another 2 weeks before the caterer's date (so like a month prior). That way I had 2 weeks to track down any stragglers.
So I guess you'd need to use those vendor/caterer dates and do your own backcalculation? 6 weeks sounds best but probably check out those head count dates.
I would do a save the date 6+ months out then a formal invite 2-3 months before. OR send the invite at 5 or more months and send a follow up - RSVP....kinda different, but it could work so that your RSVP cards don't get lost in the mail.
I would get the save the dates out as early as humanly possible. I put 5 months on the poll but that's only because it was the biggest date possible. I would (and did) get mine out 10 months in advance for a DW. If it's a big, expensive trip, people should have the chance to save for it.
I sent out Save the Dates about six or five months in advance. Invites were sent 2-3 months before wedding.
If it involves flights? At least 6 months. I like to scope out my flights and price shop for a while.
We sent our STDs out 6 months before our wedding and most of the guest list only had a 15-30 minute drive to the venue. For a DW, I would need WAYYYY more than 5 months. Upwards of a year would be ideal. It's not that we couldn't be prepared for a trip in 5 months but having the extra time to save and plan is really necessary when you're asking your loved ones to spend their time and money on your special day. To be completely honest, I would probably be annoyed if I got a STD for a DW only 5 months in advance. So much so that I possibly wouldn't even attend, especially if I had already planned other trips that year.
I am not a big planner and rarely book flights in advance, but I'd still like as much notice as possible!
All of those options wouold not give me enough time. I have a family of 6. My prefrence is 12-18 months, so I can save money and not hurt my families standard of living. But then again do you mean out of town or out of country (like mine)?
Budget or luxury accomidations.
My fiance and I are planning a destination wedding to Punta Cana, DR for April 2014 and we are sending out our invitations January 2013. We, however, are extreme planners and want everyone to have plenty of notice and time to save money for our special day.
I think some answers are confused here.. my question was about when to send the INVITES for a DW given that STDs were being sent out at 8 months. Also maybe I should clarify that there is a wedding website with travel info referred to on the STD so people who want to can start planning before they receive the invite.
The invitation would not be the first notice of the DW...
The earlier the better. I'm a total planner.
I'd want way more time then 5 months.
i sent stds out 11.5 months out, and will send invitations out about 6 months in advance
I told people as soon as we got engaged, 1.5 years ago lol. If you want people there you need to give good notice, people are planning their own vacations, weddings and pregnancies so its best to know who can actually commit or not.
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