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Invitations and Save the Dates

Hi Ladies,

I looked at past posts about these two subjects, but wanted to see if I can get a more specific answer for our scenario. We're getting married in November 2010. We're signing a group agreement with the resort (30 rooms) in which we start getting charged deposit for all 30 rooms 30 days after we sign the agreement. Should we send out our invitations along with our save the dates to allow everyone to start booking? Basically giving them time to contact our travel agent and get a quote from them and pay them a deposit where they can also pay through a payment plan while locking in the plane prices and resort?

Or should we just bite the bullet, pay the $200 for each room deposit and send the invitations closer to the wedding date?

I'd rather not pay for the deposits, which we'll get reimburse once people book each room. On the website (placed on the STDs) we mention the various options our guests have. Book now and through our TA then they can get the flights locked in and pay using the payment plan. 

Help! 

Hopefully I explained our situation well enough. I just don;t think waiting until July or August to send out invitations would be logical...but I could be wrong. 

Again, Help!

Re: Invitations and Save the Dates

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    I would send enough info with your STDs so that people can start booking as soon as they get them. Just an FYI: not everyone looks at the website, so if there is something on your website that's really important for people to know you might want to include it on the physical STD. We included an accomodation insert with the STD (pics in bio), and I'm glad we did. I would wait to send the invites until closer to the wedding. 1/3 of our guests booked before the invites were sent.
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    Ditto what pp said.  Either include the accommodation info on the STD or add an additional insert with the info and let them know when they need to book their room by.  
    I had a small amount of people book their flights/hotels after they got the STD, but the majority waited until after they got the invitation.  The super-planners will get that STD and book right away, everyone else will think about it but it won't become "real" until they get the invite.

    HTH!
    Anniversary
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    A Save the Date has the same effect as an invitation in that it tells the person you're sending it to that they're going to get an invitation, so they should save the date.  Which means that you don't need to send an invitation so early because a STD can do the same thing.  And actually, it's waaay too early to send an invitation.  DW brides do tend to send invitations early, but this is still too early.

    Instead, send your STD now with whatever info you need folks to have (you could send a STD postcard, then follow up with accommodations info by email if you don't have enough room for accommodations info in the STD itself).  Then a few months before the wedding, send the invites.  This timing varies - we're doing ours about 2 months out, some ppl do it as early as 4 months out (although I think that's way early, esp. if you already did STDs).

    Lastly, are you positive that you're going to use all 30 rooms?  And if not, does your contract allow you to get deposits refunded if the room isn't booked by a certain time?  You'll find that lots more ppl will say they want to come than can actually manage to make it, and I wouldn't want to lose that much money to non-refundable deposits.
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    We actually sent out an evite feeler weeks ago and about 80 people confirmed. So instead of booking 40 rooms, we felt 30 is safe and we're comfortable with that number since our immediate family and close friends who are absolutely sure they'll be there will be more than enough for the 30 rooms.

    I'll make additional inserts with booking information to send along with the STDs. 

    Thanks everyone!
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