If you’re wondering when you should send thank you cards for your wedding, this is for you!
Perhaps you’re curious if it is too late to send thank you cards; did you wait too long to send wedding thank you cards and now they’re overdue? Should you send thank you cards late?
And what, really, what is the appropriate time to send wedding thank you cards: is it a year later, as most people believe, or sooner?
In this article, you’ll discover the proper thank you card etiquette timeline so you can send thank you’s that aren’t overdue. I’ll also give you the exact date to send your cards based on your nuptials.
This post was inspired by newlywed, Molly, who writes:
“Hi Emmaline, my wedding was in August and I want to know when to send wedding thank you cards. I think I waited too long and now my cards are overdue. When is it too late to send thank you cards for the wedding? Do I have a full year to mail out thank you cards and is it rude to not send thank you cards right away? Please offer any advice, thank you!”
Ah, there’s a lot packed into this question: but fear not, we’ll work through it together. For starters, breathe a sigh of relief: you’re still on the right track here with your wedding thank you cards, but you will need to mail them out soon.
Here’s the wedding thank you cards timeline so you can get it working on those gracious notes.
When to Send Wedding Thank You Cards
As a rule of thumb, you have three months from your big day to send wedding thank you cards to guests.
This is the proper etiquette for sending thank you’s to guests after a wedding and it is polite to do so.
Contrary to what many people believe, a couple does not have a full year to send wedding thank you notes. This is according to wedding etiquette expert, Anna Post, based on Emily Post’s Wedding Etiquette. She says the myth of couples having up to a year to send wedding thank you cards is simply too long of a window; instead, she recommends couples write their thank you cards promptly upon return from the wedding (or the honeymoon, if it occurs immediately after your wedding).
So, then, how long after you get married should you send thank you cards? Plan to write, address, and send your cards no later than 3 months from your wedding date.
Here is a personalized timeline for your thank you cards, based on your wedding month. This is a guideline: if you send cards earlier, even better! Try to stay within this window of time so your cards don’t feel overdue or late.
|Wedding Month||When to Send Thank You Cards|
This timeframe honestly feels like an eternity while you’re planning your wedding. But then the big day occurs, you are enjoying the honeymoon period, then BAM! The date sneaks up on you and you’re left with thank you cards that are overdue.
If this is the case for you, don’t panic: however, you should send thank you cards from your wedding ASAP. The sooner, the better.
Is it rude to not send thank you cards?
Yes, it is rude to skip wedding thank you cards altogether. It is a major faux pas in the etiquette arena to send no thank you card after your wedding. Remember, it is far better to send thank you cards late than never at all. It doesn’t matter if you’re weeks or months overdue: send thank you notes anyway! Guests take notice and will surely appreciate it.
When should you send out thank you cards after a bridal shower?
Now that you know when to mail wedding thank you notes, let’s talk about when should you send out thank you cards after a bridal shower.
The ideal timeframe for wedding shower thank you notes is two weeks from the date of the event. If you’re wondering who sends the thank you cards from a bridal shower, the couple does; you will handwrite them and, if possible, be as specific about the gift as possible (and how you’ll put it to good use). Family and friends love to hear it!
If guests mail gifts directly to your home, you may send thank you notes immediately upon arrival; however, you need to also send thank you cards after the shower for attending it. The purpose of a thank you card for a wedding shower is to thank the guest for attending the event and celebrating with you; not solely for the gift itself.
Do you send out thank you cards for bridal shower and wedding?
Yes, you will send wedding thank you cards for both events separately. For your convenience, here’s a quick guide to both:
|Event||Timeframe for Thank You Cards|
|Bridal / Wedding Shower||2 Weeks from the Event|
|Wedding||3 Months from the Wedding Date|
If you begin writing thank yous immediately after the wedding, you can get a head-start and aim to get them all out within one month’s time. Guests appreciate the early gratitude and you’ll have less on your plate so you can spend more time enjoying that honeymoon period.
Prefer a video? Here you go!
Should thank you cards be handwritten?
100%, yes, absolutely: wedding thank yous should always be handwritten.
While some items are wonderful when sent digitally, thank you cards for a wedding should not be e-mailed to guests or digital. You should always hand-write your cards and send wedding thank you cards in the mail.
Now that you know how long you have to write thank yous, it’s time to order cards if you do not have them yet. The sooner you buy wedding thank you cards, the sooner you can start writing them out and put them aside to mail on time.
You can buy wedding thank you cards and bridal shower notes from Minted here. They offer many options including wedding thank you cards with photos and without, stylish cards based on theme or season, and even styles to match your invitations (if you purchased your save the dates or invites from here).
It’s OK to go basic on thank you cards: simple is just fine! I’m sharing a mix of styles to show you what I mean. Here are a few of the best thank you cards for weddings, IMO.
When you’re prepping yours, be sure to pick up one of these return address stamps ASAP to save yourself on writing your address on every single card.
Honestly, it’s even easier if you shop your cards at Minted because they offer FREE guest addressing on the envelopes, along with your return address, so you’ll have a totally tailored look (without the hand cramp, ha!)
While you’re stocking up, grab plenty of postage stamps here, too, where you can buy in bulk. And lastly, get yourself a pair of these pens. For under $2, you can’t go wrong. They make writing so much easier: it’s smooth, permanent, and smudge-proof.
How long do you have to send thank yous from a wedding
The etiquette rule is 3 months from the wedding date to send thank you cards to your guests. The sooner, the better. And don’t feel bad if they’re late: overdue thank you cards are infinitely better than no thank you card after a wedding.
I hope it helps! Thanks so much to Molly for writing.