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Destination Wedding Invitations

by Kate Wood

Sep 22, 2014

© Poznyakov | Dreamstime


Unless you’re eloping, planning a destination wedding means a longer timeline than would be suggested for traditional nuptials. While save-the-date cards would be optional for a hometown affair, if you’re asking guests to jet off to a far-flung locale, it’s pretty much mandatory you give them a heads-up. For a destination wedding in the United States, aim to send a save-the-date no later than six months before the big day. But if you’re planning on getting hitched on a holiday weekend or in a popular tourist location, you’ll be safer shooting for eight months prior — remember, your guests are going to be competing with other travelers for plane seats, hotel rooms and more. Eight months is also good timing if you’re marrying anywhere where your guests will need a passport (don’t forget that these days, that includes the Caribbean). Not everyone has a passport (or one that hasn’t expired), so you need to allow for the time it will take them to get an application processed.


With a destination wedding, the save-the-date becomes almost more important than the invitation, since it kicks off everyone’s travel planning. Still, don’t skip the formal invitations. It’s proper etiquette, and if anyone’s slacking on booking a flight, it’s a gentle reminder to get on it. Again, allow more time if you’re marrying outside the lower 48, in a tourist hotspot, or on a busy weekend — three months is a good rule-of-thumb. For a destination wedding inside the United States, get your invites in the mail six to eight weeks before the celebration.


Bottom line: The sooner you start spreading the word, the better. Your guests will be able to take care of their plans more easily and you can avoid last-minute confusion, saving you headaches down the road — and on the road.



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