If you have recently become engaged, as soon as you set the date, you need to start thinking about invitations. Ideally, you should have enough time to send out save the date cards and then wedding invitations.
Save The Date
Save the date cards have become very popular due to how useful they are. If you plan on getting married somewhere that will require guests to arrange for travel, sending out save the date cards is a great way to give guests time to save up for your wedding and get the appropriate time off. For example, if you plan on inviting family that lives far away or all your college friends who are scattered across the United States, giving them advanced notice is helpful.
It is also a good idea to send out save the dates if you are getting married on a popular date. For example, if you are planning on getting married in the summertime, you may face a lot of competition against other events and weddings. Or if you plan on getting married on a holiday weekend, such as Memorial Day weekend, sending out a save the date will give people advance notice to change long-standing plans they may have for that holiday weekend.
Ideally, you should send out save the date cards a year in advance of your wedding. However, if you plan on getting married in less than a year, just send out your save the date cards as soon as you can.
If you send out save the date cards, wait until about three months before your official wedding date to send out your wedding invitations. If you were not able to send out save the dates, it is okay out your wedding invitations a little sooner than that.
The important thing when you send out your wedding invitations is the deadline for RSVPs. Your deadline for RSVPs should be set before your caterer needs to know a final headcount for your wedding.
For example, if your caterer needs to know three weeks in advance how many people will be coming to your wedding, set your RSVP date for four weeks in advance. Building in an extra week or two will allow you time to follow up with individuals who failed to mail in an RSVP in order to make sure that you have the most accurate head count possible for your caterer.
Try to send out save the date cards a year in advance and send out your wedding invitations three months in advance, with a due date for RSVP's at least a month before your wedding date. Work with an event planner, like Events By Nichole, for more help.