If there's one thing that planning a wedding in 2020 has taught couples across the world, it's that it's better to be over-prepared. With social distancing guidelines, gathering capacity rules, and travel restrictions constantly changing, it's essential that couples have a plan in place for notifying guests about changes to the celebration—and that's especially once invitations with the details for the day have gone out. To that end, we're sharing expert-approved advice on how to quickly and effectively share wedding-related updates with your guests when invitations aren't an option.
Send a second, smaller printed card.
Kristy Rice, owner and founder of Momental Designs, believes that the way you convey the changed details of the wedding day should be reflective of the importance of the change. "For example, we've had many couples require a change in venue after their invite mailing." In situations like these, she suggests that her clients have a small mailing card designed that coordinates with the original invites. You may want to go with a more affordable option—like a thinner cardstock versus handmade paper, or digital printing instead of letterpress—so that these updates don't break the budget.
When mailing new cards isn't an option, go digital.
If you are short on time, and cannot wait for the information to be sent through the postal service, Rice suggests using an online delivery service like Greenvelope or Paperless Post. You can upload imagery that coordinates with your original invitations to elevate the electronic updates. You should also plan to post updates on your wedding website, assuming you have one. When there is a major change to plans for the wedding day, the couple should never be afraid of too much communication.
If you have just spent the past few months (or even years) planning your big day, making changes to the plans can feel really overwhelming and disheartening. Fortunately, the conveying of the changes does not all have to fall entirely on you. Shannon Tarrant, founder of Wedding Venue Map, says that this is one job you should feel free to ask for help with. "It is so important to make sure the information has been received which may mean multiple follow-up messages. If the guest list is large, the easiest way to tackle the challenge is to enlist support!" Your parents and wedding party are perfect proxies to help spread the word of change to your wedding guests. Just make sure they are not sending out a mass text message, Tarrant says. "People start replying into a big group and potentially important information about the change gets overlooked."
The only method you want to avoid using when you need to spread news of a change is word of mouth. Jamie Chang, a wedding planning professional and creator of Passport to Joy, says that it is too easy for details to get confused. Having a few set messengers designated to explain the new details can assure you that the right information is being relayed, and that people who are on the receiving end understand the changes. This can ensure that nobody misses a critical change, and that nobody feels like they were an afterthought.
Plan ahead by collecting guests' email addresses or direct everyone to your wedding website.
If you're sending out invitations for a 2021 wedding right now, your best bet is to include a line for guests to provide their best email address on the RSVP card. Having that information from the get-go will make it easier for you to notify everyone of last-minute changes. You can also include an insert card that says something to the tune of, "We're hoping to celebrate on June 5, 2021, but in the event our plans change, we'll share share updates on our wedding website, www.thesmithsjunewedding.com."