Unless your wedding invitations are a single sheet of 80 lb. cover stock in an average envelope, chances are you will need more than one first-class postage stamp on your envelopes to get them to their destination.
If you guess or assume the amount of postage required and you're wrong, all your wedding invitations will be returned to you rubber stamped "insufficient postage."
They will be returned provided you didn't skip putting a return address on your envelopes. Yes, some people have chosen to ignore the obvious and to save time or money, did not put a return addresses on their envelopes and the post office has no clue what to do with your beautiful invitations except to toss them.
Did you know:
In the planning stages, it is important to ask how much your invitations will cost to mail. If adding $.11 or more postage just to be able to mail square envelopes (has nothing to do with weight, but orientation limitations with the post office scanning equipment) is something that isn't in your budget, you will need to choose a different size invitation before you get to the design, proof and printing stages.
Do NOT buy all your postage until you have mailed a sample to yourself. As soon as you get your invitations, put one together with all the pieces, address it to yourself, take it into the post office and have a postal employee determine and affix the correct amount of postage for your invitation, then mail it to yourself. You can work on assembling and addressing all the invitations after you've mailed this test sample. When your sample arrives in your mailbox, you'll know the postage was correct (or not if it was returned to you with "insufficient postage" stamped on it), you'll also see how it survived its journey and what your guests will see in their mailboxes and you can make any changes necessary before you mail all the invitations. After you've done the test mailing, you can then buy your postage.
Don't guess at postage and don't take chances with your invitations. A few extra steps will ensure your guests receive their invitations.
When should you mail your party invitations is not a trick question, but the answer can be confusing. When to mail your party invitations depends on:
When to Mail Kid's Party Invitations:
For kids birthday party invitations, two to four weeks in advance should be enough notice. However, if your child's party is around a holiday, around a busy sports schedule or around sports play-offs for your child or is on the same day as say the Super Bowl, extra notice or even having the party on a different day close to the birthday may be necessary. Once children are in school, they understand their parties will occur on weekends and not necessarily on their birthdays. You will also want to make sure best friends, grandparents and other special people are available on your chosen date and time before creating invitations.
When to Mail Formal Party Invitations:
Formal invitations should be sent four-six weeks before the date, even as much as eight weeks for a wedding. If you want to send more than eight weeks notice of a party, consider sending a save the date card instead with the invitation to follow six-eight weeks before the event. Formal occasions include:
When to Mail Casual Party Invitations:
Informal or casual event invitations should be mailed two to four weeks before the party date. Casual barbecues, pool parties, dinner parties, birthday parties don't require a lot of notice to attend. Again, the exception to this is if there is a holiday on your party date or if there will be several other people celebrating the same occasion such as your child's graduation party should not be scheduled at the same time as their best friend's party, the Super Bowl, Halloween, etc.
When to Mail Holiday Invitations:
Holiday schedules fill up at warp speed, so for the best turnout at your party, you will want to mail holiday party invitations early enough to be the first to claim the date and the excitement and attention of your invited guests.
December Friday and Saturday nights are popular nights for parties, so don't wait long to claim the date for your event. New Year's Eve is also a party you will want to give guests lots of notice so they select your party as to one to attend.
When to Use Save the Date Cards:
If you are planning a party that needs advance notice for guests to take off work, travel long distances or arrange for child care, you can send save the date cards that notify them of the party, the date, and that more information will follow by a printed invitation with all the details. Holidays, weddings, business functions or occasions that fight for your guests attendance such as 4th of July, Christmas, New Year's Eve are parties guests will appreciate receiving save the date cards to make advance preparations necessary to attend your party.
We love the questions we get from our fabulous customers and today's question was one I haven't heard in all the years I've been creating party invitations.
"How do you word invitations
to ask guests to bring tips
for the bartender?"
First, if you can afford a bartender, or your event supplies a bartender, you can afford the tip at the end of the evening.
At most events, alcohol is the the responsibility of the hosts. If you can't afford an open bar, limit the guest's selections to beer and wine or coffee and tea, whatever you can afford. If alcohol is not in your budget, consider inviting fewer guests so you can budget for this expense. Also, check with your venue to see if the cost of a bartender and their tip is included as part of the overall bill for your event.
I have been to events where there is a tip jar at the bar, and as long as you agree, it is fine for the bartender to put out the tip jar (remember, some guests will think this is tacky.) If you aren't okay with a big jar with a handwritten "Tips" note attached messing up your beautifully decorated venue, then make sure you let the bartender know that you are paying for their services as well as the tip at the end of the event and you would rather they put the tip jar under the bar for the duration of your event.
You don't expect guests to tip the wait staff and other people who made sure your event ran smoothly, so you shouldn't treat the bartender any differently. Figure out how you can cover the cost of serving cocktails and beverages to your guests and include that amount -- plus the tip -- in your event's budget.
You might also like:
You want your wedding day to be perfect and coming up with a guest list is one of the most important things to consider when arriving and sticking to a budget.
As most aspects of our wedding are based on "per person", an accurate head count of who's invited and who's coming is crucial.
Your guest list is where everything begins and ends. You need to know how many people you are inviting and how many are realistically going to attend. This number dictates the size of your wedding location and the reception venue, your budget for food, drinks, favors, etc.
Mailing out 300 hundred invitations and hoping only 150 guests will accept is not realistic.
If your chapel or beautiful section of beach will only hold 150 people and 200 reply that they are attending, you will have a serious problem. Turning away invited guests is a situation you will want to avoid. Also, there may not be room to simply add more chairs or more tables to the venues you have chosen. There are space limitations and also fire laws that will limit the number of people allowed at one time in a location.
Set your wedding budget and know how many "heads" you have allowed in this number. To narrow down your list of who to invite, assume 80% will reply they are attending unless you are having a destination wedding and the location will prevent many guests from attending due to cost or travel distances.
Going forward, the number of guests to invite assumes 80% will attend. Calculate how many guests you can safely invite to order your save the date cards, wedding invitations, and your temporary head count when determining costs for your wedding cake, reception venue, caterer, bartender, party favors or any service that relies on per-person price to arrive at an estimated cost of all services and to plan your wedding budget.
"Regrets Only", or don't call unless you're NOT coming, has become a popular phrase to put on party invitations.
While it may seem the hip or easy thing to do, I personally strongly disagree with EVER using regrets only. A few of my reasons could prevent you from having a major party host panic attack.
A few years back, I threw a New Year's Eve party and invited about 20 couples. I made up this really cute rhyming poem, printed my invitations on beautiful ivory shimmery paper wrapped with a gold ribbon and bow, put stamps on the matching shimmery envelopes and sent them on their merry way.
I planned the rest of the party, but when it came time to shop for food, drinks, and other party goods, I started to panic.
"What if no one came to my party?"
Granted, no one had called to say they couldn't come, but then most people have a hard time replying they are coming to a party.
So now what? How many people do I:
I think you now get some of the big issues that can arise with using "regrets only" instead of RSVP on your party invitations. So seriously, why would you use Regrets Only? If you're like me and you break down and call your guest list to see if any one is really coming, you have totally defeated the purpose of your Regrets Only reply request.
Play it safe and use "RSVP to Donna by December 1st" and add a phone number, an email address or both, or some variation of those words on your invitations, especially when a head count is needed for things like seating, a bartender, a caterer, party favors or general peace of mind.
The next time you get an invitation, verbal, in the mail or heaven forbid, by social media, you can do the host and hosts of the future a favor and REPLY! Just pick up the phone, email your reply, mail back the response card and let the host know you will or will not be attending their party. Trust me, they will appreciate it and so will you when you decide to through your own party.
Custom printed party invitations you're proud to send and guests will love to receive plus party favor boxes, bags, decorating tips and party planning help.