The date you choose for your wedding can have a big impact on its success. It can impact how happy your guests are to join you. It can impact the price of your wedding. It will even impact when you celebrate future anniversaries.

You’ll need at least a year for planning, so keep that in mind. Yet you probably won’t just pick the first date that’s one year from now. Here are a few pointers to keep in mind.

Choose your venue first

You don’t want to choose a wedding date only to find out your top venue choices won’t be available. Choose the venue that you love, find out what dates they have available, and make your choices from among the available dates.

This will save you a lot of heartache and headache. It will also let you reserve your venue right away, which can take a lot of stress out of your wedding process.

Aim for work-and-school friendly dates

It’s not enough to just pick a weekend. That’s important for most guests, but there are other considerations.

You don’t want to be too close to a major holiday. You also want to avoid back-to-school dates or exam times. These will vary from school district to school district, so ask guests who may have kids what their schedules look like.

 Tax time can be a bad time for weddings as well, especially if anyone you plan to invite is a small business owner, accountant, or a freelancer.

Consider your budget

If you’re trying to keep wedding costs down then there are certain months worth targeting: March, April, and November. All of these are close to major holidays (Easter, and Thanksgiving) so you might want to check with your guests to see how they feel about it.

If nobody will have to travel very far and it’s not right on the holiday, it’s possible nobody will mind.

Ask the most important guests

You might have caught onto an important theme here: choosing a wedding date isn’t something you do in a vacuum. You probably have a handful of must-have guests: your wedding party, for example, and your parents.

They should get some say in when the wedding happens between all of the available dates. You can consult with them, saying something like: “Here are the dates our top 3 venue choices have available. What works best for you?”

If you do this then you guarantee everyone you really want there can be there, and you create goodwill by ensuring your wedding isn’t going to be a major burden or inconvenience. It’s all about being considerate.

You also eliminate some stress right off the bat, stress that couples often create by choosing their wedding day at random.

Once you have your date and a venue, the rest of the planning should fall into place with ease! You’ll be able to focus on making your special day as lovely as possible, and will be in a fine position to send out those “save the date” cards.