He slipped the ring on your finger two weeks ago, and you have both picked a date for the big day. But, before you take the next steps to choose your dress, meet with a florist, and schedule a wedding cake tasting, etc., it’s important that you let all potential wedding guests know that they need to “save-the-date.” What is a save-the-date and why would you consider sending them? In a nutshell, a save-the-date is something that you send to your friends and family members (who will eventually be invited to the wedding) to let them know that you are engaged, and that your wedding will be on said date. In other words, it lets them know not to schedule any other things that day! While you don’t have to send them, they will allow guests to start thinking about travel arrangements (if it is a destination wedding), when they should put in requests to take time off from work, and if they will need to find a babysitter. Inevitably, the goal of the save-the-date is considered a courtesy for your guests and to help guarantee that you increase the chances that your loved ones and friends will be there to celebrate with you and your fiancé! When is it appropriate to mail your save-the-dates? You should send out your save-the-dates 6-8 months before your wedding. If you do it up to a year before the wedding, they might forget to save-the-date. On the other hand, if you mail them a few months before the big day, you might as well just consider them to be their formal invitations. Do you need to send save-the-dates to everyone you intend on inviting? Yes! Even though you might have already received verbal acknowledgements from some guests, and the bridesmaids and groomsmen that they are coming, you still need to ensure that they receive them and it’s courteous as well. And, remember, only mail save-the-dates to those who you want to have at your wedding! Is it important that you have the date set before you mail them? If possible, it is important that you include the exact date of your wedding. It is rare that couples will have to change the date of their wedding after these go out, but that does not mean it hasn’t happened before. If you are worried about the fact that you could have to change your date, you can think about making a wedding website, including the URL on the save-the-date, and encouraging guests to check for updates every once in a while. While no one says that you must send out save-the-dates, that does not mean that they are not valuable. In all, if having everyone on your guest list at your wedding is important to you, consider sending them out to keep everyone in the loop!