how far in advance to send wedding invitations for destination weddings ?

how far in advance to send wedding invitations for destination weddings ?

Navigating the Destination Wedding Etiquette: When to Send Invitations


Destination weddings are a dream for many couples, offering the allure of exotic locations and intimate celebrations. However, orchestrating a destination wedding requires meticulous planning, especially when it comes to inviting guests. One of the most common questions that arise in the context of destination weddings is: how far in advance should wedding invitations be sent? Let’s explore the etiquettes and considerations associated with this important aspect of destination wedding planning.

The Destination Wedding Timeline

Unlike traditional weddings, destination weddings necessitate an extended planning timeline due to the logistics involved, such as travel arrangements and accommodations. To accommodate these factors, experts recommend sending out destination wedding invitations much earlier than you would for a local celebration.

Save-the-Dates: 8-12 Months Before the Wedding

For destination weddings, sending save-the-date cards is paramount. These informal announcements should be mailed to your prospective guests approximately 8-12 months before the wedding date. Save-the-dates serve as an early alert, allowing your loved ones to mark their calendars and begin making travel plans. Including basic information about the wedding location and suggested accommodations can be incredibly helpful at this stage.

Formal Invitations: 3-4 Months Before the Wedding

Once your guests have received the save-the-date, the formal wedding invitations should follow around 3-4 months prior to the wedding day. This timeline allows your guests ample time to finalize their travel arrangements, RSVP, and plan their stay. In the invitation package, include detailed information about the wedding itinerary, local attractions, transportation options, and any pre-wedding or post-wedding events.

Factors to Consider

  1. Travel Time and Availability: Consider the travel time required to reach the destination and the availability of flights or other modes of transportation. If the destination is remote or requires multiple connections, giving guests more time to plan is courteous.
  2. Local Events and Holidays: Be mindful of local events, festivals, and holidays at the destination. These could impact the availability and pricing of accommodations, transportation, and even the local vibe. Sending invitations well in advance allows guests to plan around such events.
  3. Weather Considerations: Research the destination’s climate thoroughly. If your wedding falls during a specific season, inform your guests about the weather conditions so that they can pack accordingly. This is especially crucial for beach weddings or destinations with unpredictable weather patterns.


Planning a destination wedding is a delightful yet intricate endeavor, and timing is a key factor that ensures the smooth participation of your guests. By sending save-the-dates 8-12 months before the wedding and formal invitations 3-4 months prior, you provide your guests with the necessary time to make travel arrangements, ensuring a higher attendance rate. Remember, clear communication and thoughtful planning make all the difference in making your destination wedding an unforgettable experience for both you and your cherished guests.