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Wedding Card Expert Advice
When should you start the wedding card process?
Ideally, you should order your cards the moment you book your venues.
It takes time to find the right Indian wedding card company. Even after that, the process of choosing a design that everyone likes, sharing your text, having it placed, proofreading it and confirming it for print takes 2-3 weeks. Final printing and courier to your home can take an additional 2-3 weeks.
If a significant portion of your guests are coming from out of town, they would need to have the invitation with them well in advance. Let’s do some maths here. It may take 4-5 weeks for you to receive your invitations from when you start the process, add a couple of weeks for your guests to receive them and if you give your out-of-towners a couple of months to plan their travel, we are looking at a lead time of 4-5 months at least.
Now, these timelines may seem too early to some, but they are recommended because wedding invitations should be a stress free and a fulfilling experience, which can only happen if you have time on your hands!
Should you plan for extra printed wedding ...
You should order 10-15% more cards than you think you need because the guest list invariably keeps growing.
In our experience, it’s best to keep a margin of safety and order some extra cards. The guest list is not only the most fluctuating item on the wedding to-do list but also the most critical. There will always be guests that get left out in the early planning stages due to oversight.
For this reason, people usually order 10-15% extra cards and take a matching e Wedding Card which not only takes care of any unforeseen shortages but can also be used as a thoughtful reminder to send out closer to the wedding.
When should you plan on having the wedding cards in hand?
Earlier than you think!
It’s simple. You need time to distribute them and your guests need time to plan.
Let’s do a quick calculation. Cards should reach your guests at least 5-6 weeks before the wedding date to give them some time to plan. Just the Save The Date is not treated as a confirmation to start booking tickets and planning the wardrobe. To this, add a week to ready the cards at your end and a week or two for postal delivery or distribution.
So ideally, you should plan to have the cards with you around 2-3 months before the wedding.
Please note that this is the minimum amount of time needed to have a stress free card distribution experience.
In certain situations, you may need to plan to receive your cards 6-7 months in advance to have enough time for distribution:
If a significant portion of your guests are coming from overseas, they would need to have the invitation with them at least 5-6 months in advance, if not more
If your guest list is large and you plan to hand distribute the majority of your cards, then you’ll need more time because going individually to houses takes time. There are so many tasks that come up in the last few months that distribution happens slower than planned
Your wedding cards should not be a stressful last minute exercise. Always plan earlier than you think you’ll need them. Even if you get them in hand early, at least you would have one less item on your large wedding to-do list!
What are the different ways to send out invitations?
There are a number of ways you can distribute Indian wedding invitation cards.
Within India, there are the 3 broad ways:
Personal visits: This is the most meaningful way to distribute cards and is highly appreciated by guests. It can only be done for local guests though. The only challenge here is that it takes a lot of time, but it does add a personal touch
Send the invitation with a driver: If you are blessed enough to have a driver, you can make use of this wonderful resource and distribute cards faster. You can divide your city into sections and make a route for your driver to follow. You’ll be able to get through at least 8-12 cards a day, depending on the city. You can follow it up with a phone call to make it more personal
Courier: This is the most efficient option and is a time saver. It is perfect for guests who stay outside your city. Make sure you follow it up with a call, this will add a personal touch and will go a long way to make your guests feel a part of the upcoming wedding
You might also have a significant number of overseas guests. Here are the 4 broad ways you can send them a card:
Regular Post: From India, it takes approx. 2-3 weeks for the mail to reach most overseas destinations. This is the cheapest option, but there is no tracking. If your cards don’t reach, then there’s really no recourse
Speed Post: According to the post office, this is a little faster and a more secure way of sending your cards. It is definitely more expensive, but not prohibitive. They do claim to have tracking, but note that the tracking is only within India. The tracking stops as soon as your mail crosses the border
Courier: This is the fastest and the safest way to send your cards. You can use companies such as DHL or FEDEX. They also provide end to end tracking, and your mail will reach in 4-6 days. All these benefits also make this the most expensive option to send cards
Friends & Family: This is one way to significantly reduce cost. We suggest that you try and send your cards through someone travelling overseas so that they can be posted locally in that country. Of course, you’ll need a friend or a relative to do that for you, but if you’ve planned sufficiently in advance, you’ll be able to find someone who’s traveling sooner or later.
Alternatively, you can also decide to send an eCard to your international guests. This will be a little less personal but will save you a lot of money and effort.
Founder at The Wedding Card Co., an online wedding card store allowing brides & grooms to order beautiful invitations from the comfort of their home!
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