Inviting guests to join you at an exotic location to celebrate your wedding? Then you already know your timeline and planning is a little (or a lot) different than for a traditional wedding. While a standard save the date may not include more than your wedding date, the venue, and the URL of your wedding website, if guests will be pulling out their passports or joining you for a few days instead of just a night or two, there are a few more things you'll want to tell them in advance. Here's what our experts think you should include in your destination wedding save the dates.
The first thing to remember is timing. While a regular wedding's invitation goes out eight weeks before the wedding and save the dates go out around four months in advance, a destination wedding invitation should go out at least 12 weeks in advance. And those save the dates? Plan on sending them a minimum of six months in advance, and up to eight months before the Big Day. This will give your guests plenty of time to compare flight options, make arrangements at work, and plan an extended trip before or after your wedding if they so desire.
Now come the details. Instead of a simple postcard, consider sending out a packet so you have room for additional information, and treat your save the date as more of a pre-invitation than just a notice that you're having a wedding. You should have a general timeline for the weekend's events, from the welcome party and brunch to any group activities you've planned, and should have already secured a room block at your hotel so guests can figure out which days to take off and reserve their hotel room.
Still figuring out what other activities you'd like to include? Ask your guests! Whether it's in your save the date or on your wedding website, provide a few options and ask guests to pick what they'd be interested in participating in so you can plan accordingly.
Planning something particularly intimate or really remote? Ask guests to RSVP as part of your save the date, and use the invitation as more of a formality later on.
And of course, be sure to provide all of the information on your wedding website, too! If you're pressed for space, keep your save the date basic, and let guests know to head to your site for all of the travel specifics and a schedule of the weekend.