eco friendly wedding save the date

Do you send save the dates to evening guests?

Do you send save the dates to evening guests? Tricky one isn’t it? I get asked this question loads and my general answer is no, not unless you make it absolutely clear that it is a ‘save the evening’ request. In this blog, I will explain why this is my advice, exactly which guests I think should receive a save the date, and how best to avoid any confusion or awkward situations that could come about if you send save the dates to the wrong guests.

What is a save the date card?

Here’s a quick reminder. It is exactly what it says it is. It’s a request from the couple, to their guests to keep their wedding date free. The words ‘invitation to follow’ are usually included, to show that further details and the formal invitation will come at a later date.

The intention is to give guests plenty of notice of the wedding date, so that they can book time off, arrange travel and accommodation, and anything else that needs a bit of forward planning. And, most importantly, to avoid double booking the date with anything else such as holidays or other events.

a modern wedding save the date card with a monogram and a calendar style print

Who do you send save the dates to?

Well, in my opinion, it’s the guests that you want to join you for the whole day that will need the most notice. They are the ones that will need to make the most arrangements.

In my experience, couples starting out on their wedding planning journey usually have a gust list that is split into 3 or 4 sections:

  1. The ‘VIP day guest A list’
    Those nearest and dearest that they absolutely want there on the day, come what may
  2. The ‘definite maybe day guest’ list
    Self explanatory. There’s likely to be a number of guests that fall somewhere between your definite day and definite evening lists. And you might find yourself juggling these guests between the lists depending on numbers/budget
  3. The ‘definitely evening guests only’
    These are the guests you know will never make it to the day list, but you definitely want them there to celebrate with you in the evening.
  4. The ‘maybe an evening guest if numbers allow’ list
    Call it a reserve list if you like

So do you send save the dates to evening guests or not? My advice is always to just send save the date cards to those guests that come into section 1, the VIP day guest list. 

a pretty floral wedding save the date card

Why do you only send save the dates to day guests?  

Imagine receiving a save the date card. You assume that means you will receive an invitation to the wedding (after all, it says invitation to follow on there, right!?) so you book the day off work, and postpone that holiday you were going to take. It gets to invitation time, and yours arrives. It’s an evening invitation. Turns out you didn’t need to book the day off work. Worse, you don’t receive an invitation at all, so you could have taken that holiday after all.

My point is that, to avoid any awkward situations for either you or your guests, a save the date card should only really be sent to someone who you are 100% sure is going to make it to the full day guest list.

Is it ever OK to send save the dates to evening guests?

Well, despite everything I have said.  Yes, you can send save the date cards to your evening guests if you want to. I just advise that you make it absolutely clear that it is a request to keep the evening only free. And again, make sure these go to the right guests. If you have people on that ‘maybe day/maybe evening’ list, it’s probably best to wait until you’re sure which invitation they will be getting.

a seed paper wedding save the date card with yellow flowers in the corner

Save the evening cards: some ideas for wording

If you do decide you want to send save the dates to evening guests, I have some suggestions for you. To make it clear that your request is to save the evening only, you can use wording like these examples:

Save the Evening
Jo & Rich
are getting married
24/08/2024
They would love you to party with them
Invitation to follow

Save the Date
Jo & Rich
24-08-2024
Evening Reception
invitation to follow

Do you send save the date cards to evening guests?

In summary, no not unless you make it absolutely clear that it is a request to save the evening, not the whole day. Think carefully about which guests you 100% want to be there for your big day. These are the ones that should have a save the date card. It will give them the advance notice they need to plan, and ensure they don’t double book. Think twice about sending a save the date card to any guest who might not make the final ‘day guest’ list. If you are sending save the date cards to evening guests, choose your wording carefully so that there is no confusion.

Want to know more about when to send your save the date cards? Click here.

Want to know more about save the date cards and if you really need them? Click here.

I really hope you’ve found this blog helpful. If you are looking for help with your save the dates, wedding invitations, or any other stationery for your bid day. Please do get in touch.

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