Picking a date and location for your wedding day is no easy task. Then there is the budgeting! But what about save the dates? How much do these typically cost and how much should you be looking to put aside for them? I spent a fair bit of time reviewing and analyzing the prices across the industry to find out! I’d like to share my research with you here today.
So, how much do save the dates cost? Save the dates typically cost between $1.50 to $4 per card, but the final price will depend on the type of paper, design, how many that need to be printed, and any companies used. The average total price that couples have been reported to spend is between $150-$200.
As you can imagine; there are quite a few factors that can influence the price. Thankfully, it means that you will always be able to find a price that works for you, and your budget.
Save the dates are quite important wedding courtesies; providing your guests with the basic yet important details of your wedding – primarily the date and location.
This enables all of your guests to make note, plan ahead, and begin making any arrangements. So, if you are keen to get some positive RSVPs from your guests; these cards are certainly important!
Let us now take a closer look into the many aspects of save the dates, including whether or not they are worth it, how much you should spend, and how many you will likely need to order!
So, keep on reading if this important order is on your to-do list and you want to equip yourself with all the information you need to know before placing that order!
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How Much Do Save The Dates Typically Cost?
According to a recent survey, the average couple will spend between $150 to $200 on their save the dates. They usually cost between a third or half what you can expect to pay for your wedding invitations.
This is just an average; we need to consider that the specific cost will depend on various factors that go into how they look and feel.
The truth is, your save the dates can be as elaborate or as simple as you want them to be.
You may even want to hire a professional designer if your budget can allow it, or work independently with a stationary store to get exactly what you want.
Either way, the complexity of your requests and the style of your design will influence what you will ultimately get for your money.
Of the more simple designs, plain cards with just the basic information in a delicate font tend to work well.
Other couples, however, may want to include engagement photos or include a commissioned artwork of them. Understandably, designs with images or that require more work are usually more expensive.
Of course, there is always the matter of where you are and where you live.
Wedding stationery is generally more expensive in larger cities than it is in smaller towns.
Thankfully, online marketplaces such as Minted offer a wealth of different options from different independent artists, at very competitive prices.
It’s where I will be getting mine!
Plus they offer great deals, such as 25% off on new orders!
Are Save The Dates Worth It?
Save the dates are generally considered worth it, despite the cost. This is because they give every day-guest plenty of time to prepare and make the arrangements they need to ensure they will be able to attend your special day.
It’s only natural to wonder whether save the dates are actually worth it, especially since you will still have to follow up with an actual invitation and an RSVP card.
But, how are save the dates truly different, and where can they offer additional benefit?
Well, it helps to understand their purpose to answer this.
Save The dates are usually sent out well ahead of a wedding, as far as six months!
This is purposeful.
Its to give everyone sufficient time to plan out any travel, accommodation etc. at the earliest opportunity. And before it gets too expensive!
This information is especially important if you know your guests are going to travel a long way, to such as is the case in a destination wedding, in another country for instance.
But, even if you are getting married locally – it ensures that there is enough availability and gives people the notice they need. Its courtesy.
And remember, its simply to let your guests know the date of the wedding.
You may not know the finer details of the wedding – such as the venue and the time. That’s fine; this is what the wedding invitation is for!
If you can, it may also be helpful to include the link to your wedding website, where you can update information regularly. This gives your guests a reference point for finding out further information as it becomes available.
Now, you may be wondering whether or not a physical card is even necessary.
Can you not just send an email to your guests? Well, there are some important downsides to this means of communication to consider.
First and foremost, how can you ensure all of your guests receive it?
For instance, many people, especially the older, less technologically-savvy generation, may not check their emails regularly and may miss the announcement.
Some people don’t have email addresses altogether.
Many people have multiple email addresses, so it will be difficult to know which address they actually use and check regularly.
In some cases, your email may end up in a guests spam folder, so they will miss it entirely.
So, although an email is a much cheaper option, it is not exactly efficient.
Beyond this, people tend to much prefer physical save the dates. Its a keepsake too.
Many of your most important guests will keep hold of them, and may even display them around their home such as on their fridge – to serve as an important reminder.
Having that physical reminder is also key to ensuring your guests consider the date of your special day and make their plans in a timely fashion.
So, back to the original question. Yes, definitely, Save the Dates are worth it!
By the time that you send out your wedding invitations, people on your guest list will have likely made their decision, planned their schedule, and will be able to give you a timely RSVP “yes” or “no”.
Its much less stressful that way.
How Much Should You Spend On Save The Dates?
How much you decide to spend on your save the dates will come down to preference, along with your own financial situation. Ultimately, you should only pay for what you can realistically afford. Remember, there are a lot of expensive wedding costs to come!
You need to think about your overall budget, and set aside a certain percentage for your wedding stationary.
As mentioned above, a couple typically spends around $200 on save the dates, and then a further $400 on wedding invitations.
These numbers will give you an idea of what you can expect for save the dates, and help to ensure you get a fair price.
Of course, it can cost you more or less than this – but these numbers give you a base to work from.
Consider Your Wedding Stationary
It may be a good idea to think about ordering all of your wedding stationary from the same company, as this may help you to negotiate a better rate or a discount.
This can include not only your save the dates and wedding invitations but your place cards and menus too.
Some companies may even offer packages that take these considerations into account.
In fact, using the same company can be an excellent way to keep the theme constant and to ensure all of your stationary match. It gives a great impression and looks very classy.
This is why you will find that you can shop by theme, on sites such as Minted. It makes it so much easier!
Although. having the same design across your stationery is definitely not mandatory.
Consider The Design
Save the Dates are usually less formal, and you can play around with the design to match your interests. You can make them as formal or as playful and personal as you like.
And as there is typically not much information on a save the date; there is a lot of extra space to add something extra.
From photos through to maps, recipes, favorite songs; save the dates can include a wide range of different highlights to show your highlights as a couple and get guests excited about the special day.
Sometimes, couples add small details like dry flowers, glitter, or foil stamps. And these are generally a nice tough.
Just take into consideration that the more complicated the design and the inclusion of any additional features; the more it will cost.
This is perhaps why some couples decide to go with a more simple save the date, and a more expensive, elegant, and special wedding invitation alter.
Consider The Paper Type/Finish
Another element to consider is the paper type and finish, of the card itself.
You can choose from a wide range of materials, from parchment, cardstock to handmade or recycled paper – all of which will be available at a different price point.
Each type of paper will have a different texture with either a matte or a glossy finish, and you can choose the type of paper that will best represent your style and work with the elements in your design.
Consider The Style
Finally, you can choose how large you want your save the dates to be and whether you’d like to purchase an accompanying envelope.
Simple save the dates usually look like a postcard with just the basic information listed, and a section to fill in the recipient’s address.
While more complicated save the dates can look like a tri-fold invitation with a matching envelope.
If you are sending your Save the Dates in envelopes, you will also need to pick out the design and paper of the envelope, which again will add to the cost.
Once you have decided on all of these design elements, you may be able to get a sample to see what it will look like if you were to proceed with an order.
Some designs may look great in your imagination but may lack practicality, so you may have to switch some elements around.
Depending on the service you are using, they may charge you the cost of printing the sample, especially if you request more than one sample or more than one design. But, it’s generally worth doing.
These are just a few important factors that will affect the total cost of the Save the Dates.
You may have an entire Pinterest board saved of all the designs and elements you want to incorporate, but just consider the budget.
If you use your budget as a guideline, as well as a clear sense of what must be included and what is optional, you can create the perfect, cost-effective save the date for your wedding.
How Many Save The Dates To Order?
Save The Dates are usually sent out to guests you want to invite to the ceremony, so you need to consider how many you want to invite. Then, you’ll need to think about how many guests are in relationships, as you will only need to send one save the date per couple.
Some people will recommend ordering quit a few more and sending them out to additional guests; although this is not without its risk if all RSVP with a yes.
It may mean you need to invite more people than initially intended to the day, or face having that awkward conversation later down the line that they cannot come.
Similarly, it’s not ideal to hold back on the save the dates and then surprise them later with a wedding invite – some people may have made plans.
Therefore, it’s best to know how many people you want to invite to the wedding and have a rough idea of the guest list before ordering.
And, do be sure to follow up with an invitation when the time comes.
So, it’s generally advised to order the same number of save the dates as you intend on doing for your wedding invitations.
Perhaps even ordering a few extra just in case there is a change to the guest list or whether one or two is damaged during shipping. This shouldn’t happen but it can, and its best to plan ahead for it!
For example, if you are inviting 100 guests to your wedding, you can order 115 save the dates to give you that additional surplus, just in case.
Save the dates may not seem necessary and just another expense, but they do serve an important purpose.
Besides, we all want our guests to be able to RSVP with a yes when the invite finally comes around.
While save the dates may seem somewhat expensive, thankfully there are various ways to make them more affordable.
You also have quite a lot of flexibility in terms of how they look, the design, the paper that is used.
Every couple has their own interests, and this should be reflected in your wedding stationery.
If you are in the process of looking for save-the-date suppliers, I would thoroughly recommend that you at least take a look at the collections over at Minted.
They can give you some inspiration, at the very least.
Looking for save the dates? Then check out my guides by style and design:
- 9 of The Best Rustic Save The Dates You Can Order
- 11 Stunning Minimalist Save The Dates To Choose From
- 11 Beautiful Botanical Save The Dates To Send
- 11 Vintage Save The Dates You Have To Consider Sending
- 13 Letterpress Save The Dates You Need To Consider Sending
Hey, I’m Allison – a recent bride, an expectant mother and the chief editor here at Everlasting Occasion. Here I document all the knowledge and experience I accumulated while researching and planning my dream wedding and ahead of our new baby. Here, I try to answer those many questions couples have when planning their dream wedding, while equally, helping expectant parents ahead of their new arrival!