Sneaky ways to save money on Vistaprint wedding invitations

May 8 2013 | Guest post by Missmanda
Save The Date postcards
These save the dates were designed by an Offbeat Bride reader, and then printed with Vistaprint!

So I'm kind of a Vistaprint pro. I've been using their printing services for years, and have had great experience getting decent quality stuff on the cheap. It's really quite astounding how much you can get, for how little money, as compared to other print shops.

Granted, you don't have as much flexibility… but the price for full-color AND to upload your own design… just can't be beat!

I wanted to share a couple of things I've learned over the years ordering stuff for myself, stuff for work, and now stuff for my wedding.

1. Order the quantity you want; you don't have to order 100 if you get sneaky clever


I've seen multiple Tribesmaids bemoan the quantity restrictions on Vistaprint wedding invitations… but it is easier than you'd think to get the exact number of wedding invitations (or Save the Date cards, or whatever) you want. You just have to get a little tricksy. (Note that you won't necessarily save buckets of money, as you won't benefit from the quantity pricing quite as much. But you also won't be wantonly killing trees, or stuck with a half-full box of Save the Date cards you can't stand to throw away, but have no use for.)

Step one: Create your design, and order the largest quantity lower than the actual quantity you need… If 120 is your total #, put 100 in your cart for now.

VistaPrint-shopping-cart-A1
Step two: Go to the upper right hand corner of the screen and click "My Account" to get to your account page.

VistaPrint-tutorial-my-portfolio
Step three: On your Account page, click "See my full profile."

VistaPrint-my-portfolio-B
Step four: Locate the item you need to order more of, and click "Save a Copy"; a dialog box will pop up; give your copy a name or stick with the default "[Name you gave it] copy."

VistaPrint-my-portfolio-C-order
Step five: Voila! A second instance of the same item you painstakingly created appears in your Portfolio. Click "Order" and choose the quantity you need.

VistaPrint-skip-upsell
Step six: Want to skip the 5+ pages of "matching items" Vistaprint would like you to impulse purchase? Scroll all the way to the bottom and click "Go to Cart."

Step seven: Check your cart to make sure all looks well. Check that you've added all relevant coupon codes, etc.

Step eight: Sit back, sip an adult beverage of your choice, and smile smugly knowing you won't have to wallpaper the guest bathroom with all your extra save the date postcards!

2. Friends don't let friends shop VistaPrint without a coupon code (or several)


The key with Vistaprint is there is ALWAYS a coupon. There is ALWAYS a sale. If you think you're going to use Vistaprint, sign up for their mailing list and you'll get a ton of emails from them (too many, in my experience!). But I put up with it, and I hold on to them, because to get the deal you often HAVE to use the clicky link from one of their emails. Your account doesn't "remember" what deals they've offered you. So don't be afraid to use the link from an email you got last Tuesday to get 100 Free Business Cards, get 'em all designed and put 'em in your cart, then close the window and use a link from yesterday's email to get 20% off + Free Shipping on orders $50+ for new customers. (Or whatever the current discount happens to be).

Then, before you click checkout, do a quick Google for "Vistaprint coupon code" and make sure there aren't any other savings you can grab. I've been amazed at what I've been able to score.

3. The free envelopes suck

Not knowing any better, having never ordered cards with envelopes from Vistaprint before, I went with the envelopes they include for free. On the one hand, they are fine. They did their job, which was to be a surface on which I could write addresses, and get the Save the Date cards from point A to point B. On the other hand, they were really thin and the stationery geek in me was a little sad. Especially in contrast to the beautiful heavy cardstock of the Save the Date cards. (Note: we did pay for the upgraded, thicker cardstock. it was around $10-15 for 80 cards, and I think it was well worth it. We got the "Premium, 100lb. White Matte Stock" and I was really happy with it.) For the invites, we'll be ordering envelopes separately from another company.

4. Personalized goodies are fun (but don't pay full price!)


VistaPrint loves to offer you last-minute impulse purchases. I swear, it's worse than the candy and magazines at the grocery store checkout counter. If you decide you want one, remember to go back and check your emails for the best deal. When we were ordering our Save the Dates, the upsell/impulse purchase page suggested I get a mug with our Save the Date image on it. I decided that would actually delight me… but instead of clicking on it there and then, I cancelled my checkout process, went and found an email with a "50% off mug" deal and manually added it. Bam! Adorable mug that makes me happy every day at work and I only paid like $7.99.

Well, fellow Vistaprint-users, that's some of what I've learned. What Vistaprint tips and tricks can you add to the knowledge banks?

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  1. THANK YOU for this. I'll be honest, Vistaprint has always drawn my attention, but the one time I tried to use it I got fed up with restrictions and such, and basically never went back. Now I hear it calling again…. and this time I'll be prepared! πŸ™‚

    Seriously, thanks for the good advice.

    8 agree
    • Glad I could help!

      My best tip is #1 – you do NOT have to order 250 just because you need slightly more than 100! πŸ™‚

      I keep thinking of more stuff I could've added… can't wait to see what other helpful hints people share in the comments here!!

      8 agree
      • Do you know if vistaprint changed this? when I follow your steps it takes me back to the screen where I can only choose another 100 πŸ™ it's also not letting me stack coupons.

        11 agree
        • Has VistaPrint changed? Need to order 60, not 50 or 100, but I'm not finding where you can order in multiples of 10 even when I follow all the instructions. I noticed this article was written in 2013. Did VistaPrint catch on with the "glitch" and fix it? I really don't want to order 100 when I only need 60. Please help!

          • Hey. Did a little research and found that if you order from the invitations section and not the postcards, they have quantities of 10 you can order and they're the same size! So yeah and nevermind!

  2. I printed my wedding invites with Vistaprint. The first time they arrived, the had a big black streak through the middle. I complained, they said it was a one off mistake and sent me another round for free. They second also came with the black streak. I insisted on talking to a supervisor. Turns out lots of people had been complaining. They had to rush ship me my last batch. Finally worked, but what a waste of time, money (for them), stress and I sent my invites out late. I don't know if it's really worth the money saved.

    1 agrees
    • I'm a graphic designer at a print shop, and I've heard tons of complaints about Vistaprint. I've also seen the work they do, and it's not good. People switch to them because they're cheap, then they come back to us because we're quality (and we're not expensive either).

      3 agree
  3. I loved them for my business cards and postcards, but then this year the effed up the envelopes for my Christmas cards (sent 100 of the wrong size, even though they were the 'included' envelopes for that card I chose). Since it was another 6 weeks or something ridiculous to get new envelopes I just went to the store and got some that fit. But I will definitely be using these tips again in the future! You really can't beat the price, even if there's sometimes some hassle πŸ™‚

    2 agree
    • Jeez, how annoying! Sorry to hear you had to deal with that.

      (On the other hand, since the free envelopes suck, you may have ended up happier in the end without knowing it! πŸ™‚ )

      1 agrees
    • Whoa… wish I'd nabbed that deal! Good luck with your order, and watch this space, 'cause I bet other OBB-ers are gonna chime in with more awesome advice. πŸ™‚

      2 agree
      • Yeah, a bunch of us over on the Tribe gobbled up that deal! It's expired, but here's another one – http://www.groupon.com/deals/vista-print-42-eugene?utm_medium=afl&utm_campaign=7121066&utm_source=rvs

        I'm glad you posted this – I often had one deal disappearing from the cart as soon as I entered in a coupon code, but after reading your post, I started just re-clicking the links from the email AFTER entering the code, and it totally worked! So I got $230 worth of stuff for the shipping price of $10!

        I still haven't been able to make the quantity thing work, though – I never see that little arrow allowing you to adjust the quantity.

        2 agree
    • Groupon! I never would have thought of that but I just searched and there's one available right now. Awesome tip, thanks!

      1 agrees
  4. We made our invitations, but ordered our RSVP postcards from Vistaprint. We have a great experience- exactly what we ordered, when we were told we'd have it, and for very little money.

    • Sweet! πŸ™‚ I had a similar experience with our Save the Date cards. I'm so glad I paid the extra $13 or so for the nicer quality paper – I'm over the moon happy with them.

      We'll be ordering our invites and RSVP cards this week, so I'll report back to y'all as to how it goes.

  5. I posted this on the post in the tribe, and was asked to put it here too. I hope it helps! πŸ™‚

    Oh! I have one! We did this with our RSVPs AND our invitations.

    If you are using one of their stock images, go through the process and fill out the auto form and add it to your cart.

    Then you can go back and edit your product. It's an option in your cart. In this edit screen you get a full editor. What can you do with this little baby?

    1) Change fonts! They have quite a decent selection in my mind.

    2) Change font color!

    3) Change wording placement. Want to move something up/down/turn it on its head??? You can do it. There is a little rotate tool.

    4) Add text boxes. Were there not enough lines to say what you wanted to?? You can add more in right where you need them.

    That's all I've got for the moment!

    4 agree
    • You can also use one of their stock templates, but still add your own images if you'd like (including an image of your own map instead of paying a few bucks for their useless map)

      1 agrees
  6. I designed a free business card to use as escort cards. I ordered a free address stamp that I used on the reply envelopes. Googling for a coupon code and ordering the freebies brought my basket from about $200 to about $70. High5, fellow Vistaprint thrifty shopper!

    1 agrees
  7. Whenever I need to order something from Vistaprint, I google "Free XXXX". So, "Free Business Cards" or "Free Postcards". Almost always, a link from Vistaprint will show up, either showing you "free" (minus shipping and every sort of desirable upgrade) items or heavily discounted ones. You won't get that deal just by going to the item from the front page of Vistaprint, you have to specifically go through the search link.

    All in all, they are sheistiest buggers around, but you can get some really good stuff cheap if you play 'em right.

    3 agree
  8. I love the free stuff emails – we utilize them for our Nano group come Novembers – free notebooks, magnets, giveaway bags. You name it, we get it. It's great for more than just wedding stuff. They have templates and images for any kind of group or business.

    1 agrees
  9. Oh, dear, now I NEED to go check out the vista print site, just in case I need to get some stuff for cheap

  10. Awesome tips MissManda! I think my save the date cards (the ones pictured above, actually lol) were about $15 with shipping. I love Vistaprint not only for their sweet deals, but they have great customer service and will send you replacements without an argument if you're unfortunate enough to get a messed up order.

  11. Many people I know have been using Vistaprint to have their invites and save-the-dates printed. Some have suggested that, if you are using your own design, have your invites printed on postcards–it saves money and apparently the paper quality is better than the basic option for wedding invites. I haven't done it myself yet, but thought I'd pass on the tip.

    4 agree
    • That's exactly what I did! Our guest list required just under 100 invitations anyway, so postcards worked perfect, and were MUCH cheaper than their "actual" wedding stationery. We created and uploaded our own designs for the cards (both front and back), and used the standard postcard size/stock for both the Save-the-Dates and RSVP cards. We did not bother with envelopes for either of those β€” we didn't feel they were necessary for the vibe we went with, and besides, postcard stamps are cheaper! The for the invitations themselves, we used the oversized postcards, printed on their recycled matte paper stock (because a glossy surface didn't feel appropriate to me). We did order envelopes for those β€” I don't think there was a free option for them, but we got 100 for $9.99, and I didn't have any issues with them at all. I didn't know the tricks for getting coupons when I ordered the Save-the-Dates, so those weren't a PHENOMENAL deal (with shipping they were about $42), but by the time I ordered the invitations and RSVPs, I knew better. Ended up paying $45.96 total for invitations, envelopes, and RSVP postcards. Here's the result! http://pinterest.com/pin/14777504998751085/

      4 agree
      • Of course, they DID initially screw up the invitation order, and sent us someone else's (and the wrong quantity) but they took care of it with no problem at all. So I wouldn't do a last second order, just in case, but that little bit of inconvenience was still totally worth the savings, for me.

      • Thank you for your tips about paper quality! I am doing our save the dates as a post cards and am wondering what kind of paper to use… glossy to recycled matte? I heard that glossy may look cheesy in some cases. How is the quality on the recycled matte? Thank you!

        • I thought the quality of the recycled matte was quite nice β€” just like a normal, heavy cardstock. More like a vintage postcard than a more modern, glossy one. If that makes any sense?

          2 agree
          • We used the standard glossy postcards for our STD and I don't think they looked cheesy at all (but it was a photo of us and not just text so that might make a difference)

    • I used Vistaprint to print our Save the Dates. Our Save the Dates were the photo variety. We went with the glossy postcard paper. They turned out beautifully!

  12. I used Vistaprint for my invites, my sisters and tons of other things. make an eBates account. they have a coupon code for 50% off invites!!!!!!!

    1 agrees
  13. Ah Vistaprint has been a faithful friend to me over the years.
    I used Wedding Paper Divas for our invites, but I hated the RSVP card and how uneditable it was. So, we used the free business card promotion as a way of making a smaller insert for RSVPing (ours wasn't a mail back kind, just a small card saying how to rsvp via the website, by phone or email), and yes, I did get 250 of them when I only needed 70, but it was free (just shipping).
    The post office lost my save the dates and Vista Print mailed us out a new batch for free, even though it wasn't their fault. (Then, three months later the first batch of Save the Dates magically showed up in our mailbox, lol).
    I've ordered calendars from VistaPrint before, and they were fantastic. I encourage people to use them all the time!

    TIP – if you can at all help it, order early, just in case. They have amazing customer service and there's tons of reports of them fixing any errors free of charge, but if you're ordering from them, don't order them a week before you need the stuff! That way there's some lee-way!

    1 agrees
  14. If you want even more savings you can sign up as a Vistaprint reseller! To be fair, you should need to print with them often, but it's so cheap!

    I printed my wedding invitations from them and could not get over the quality! I loved them!

  15. We used Vistaprint for all of our wedding stationary, and were overall happy with our experience. As a graphic designer, I really appreciated being able to get exactly what I wanted! Here are my tips:

    I wanted inserts that were the same height as my invitation but half as wide, and found it was really easy (and inexpensive) to upload an 'image' with 2 of my inserts printed on it, have it produced on the same size cardstock as my invitations, order half the quantity I needed and cut them myself. I was a bit worried at the time that they would think I was trying to cheat their system, but their invitation sizes are a little nonstandard and they didn't offer an 'insert' size that would work.

    The other tip I would offer is to order all of your pieces on the same stock. It sounds like a duh, but this is where I screwed up a bit. I wanted to use linen finish, but didn't think our intricately illustrated invitations would print well on linen so I had them done on matte and then printed my inserts on linen. Surprise surprise, the linen stock has a tiny bit more yellow undertone than the matte so the colors showed up differently on each piece. Not a huge deal and I definitely sent them anyway, but it's something to keep in mind if you're a perfectionist (:

    Also, linen finish looks pretty good as long as the printer has been set accordingly. The first run is often not perfect with Vistaprint, and both of our linen pieces had to be sent back after the first run because they still had the printer set for smooth, and the indentations of the texture had no ink on them. Additionally, the linen pieces picked up black toner dust from the neglected printer much moreso than the smooth matte prints did. However, the re-prints looked fine.

    Something else to keep in mind is that the linen finish, because of its texture, will transfer ink to other pieces. Even though they weren't touching, the linen insert transferred some of the background color onto our smooth invitations because the ink caught in the linen grooves wasn't 100% set. We printed our pieces 2 months before assembly so I doubt this problem would be negated by time.

    Overall we liked the linen finish, but I don't know if we'd use it again. As usual, it really depends on the project. Vistaprint, though, we will definitely use again!

    2 agree
    • Thank you soooooooo much for talking about the Linen paper. I was wondering which paper to order and considering linen. Now I think I will go with the Premium 100 lb instead. πŸ™‚

      1 agrees
    • Thank you for your tips about paper! I am doing our save the dates as a post cards and am wondering what kind of paper to use… glossy to recycled matte? I heard that glossy may look cheesy in some cases. How is the quality on the recycled matte? Thank you!

      1 agrees
    • Thank you for your tips! I am doing our save the dates as a post cards and am wondering what kind of paper to use… glossy to recycled matte? I heard that glossy may look cheesy in some cases. How is the quality on the recycled matte? Thank you!

  16. Miss Manda,
    Do you mind sharing where you bought your envelopes. I was contemplating using their envelopes until I read this and glad I did!

  17. I recently got a banner for free that normally would be around $50 I wasn't able to pick the color scheme exactly but it says congratulations our names and our wedding date. This thing is not small and would work great behind the couple, on front of the main table or as a backdrop for wedding photography

    1 agrees
  18. I loved this post! I just used vista print to do the save the date magnets. I wanted them small so I used them business card magnets and they worked perfectly! I actually ran across your post looking for ideas for the invitation response cards… ugghhh, on to the next problem!

  19. Yay! I had heard Vistaprint commercials before but never stopped to think about using them for wedding invites till I read about it here at Offbeat. What great advice!

  20. Thank you for your tips about paper! I am doing our save the dates as a post cards and am wondering what kind of paper to use… glossy to recycled matte? I heard that glossy may look cheesy in some cases. How is the quality on the recycled matte? Thank you!

    • Absolutely β€” as long as they're the standard postcard size. Oops, strike that β€” they can be sent without an envelope regardless of size, but the oversized ones can't be sent with postcard rate stamps.

  21. I am thinking of printing our save the dates on vistaprint but I am concerned that they will have the vistaprint logo on the back like our Christmas cards did that were done on vistaprint. In your most recent experience, do they print their logo on wedding save the dates??
    Thanks for the help!

    • I believe that if you use one of Vistaprint's designs or templates, you probably will end up with the logo somewhere. The real trick is to NOT order from their official wedding/invitation options. One of my cousins did that and while I don't recall seeing the logo on the invitations themselves, it was all over the inside of the envelope. If you chose one of the "blank design" options where you upload your own artwork, the logo won't get added. For ours, I did everything on postcards, and you can order blank envelopes to go with them.

      1 agrees
    • I have ordered tonnes of stuff from Vistaprint and I've never seen their logo anywhere on my printed goods. I haven't used their templates though, I always upload my own designs.

  22. Another quick tip with VistaPrint — this site uses cookies, and sometimes will not offer you the best deal if it recognizes you from before. The really good savings sometimes only appears magically to new customers/computers Vistaprint doesn't know. Once you have an idea of what you're ordering, and have the deals you know you want to use, try another computer and email address. I have found drastically better savings doing this.

    2 agree
    • Another way to avoid site cookies revealing you are a returning customer is to use your browser's "private browsing" mode (it's not just for porn 'ya know). I also do this when using travel sites and shopping for loved ones birthday presents on a shared computer. Works like a charm πŸ™‚

      1 agrees
  23. I am looking to potentially print my reply cards as postcards to save some money on postage. If I do that, will the matte finish still allow my guests to write on the front of the card? Or would I need to put the reply information on the backside?

    • I've used matte finish with them before and I'm fairly sure your guests could write on the front with no problems. Vistaprint does offer a sample package of their papers – you could order the sample and try it out if you have time!

  24. I was wondering if there was a trick to adding more fonts to vistaprint. I am making my own invitations, and I don't want to use one of the fonts that they provide. thanks!

    • You can do a fully customized image on your own and upload it to their site, which will allow you to incorporate any font you choose. Depending on the complexity of your design, the downside is having to have a good editing program like Adobe products or really dope Word/PPT skills. There are some online open-photoshop-like programs available for free use, but you may be limited to their font libraries as well. If you have a way of incorporating a font you want into an image but want to use VP's other tools on their editor, you could always upload the texted image and then edit further.

      1 agrees
  25. Wow that is an amazing trick to get the quantity you actually need at Vistaprint.
    Going to try that right away. Thanks so much for posting!

  26. Oh Bless you! I have been having to recreate by back side designs one by one until now! Now I can make a copy and make small changes as needed!
    Thank you!!!!

  27. I have a groupon redemption code that I got for the current deal. But I cannot get any of the other sales with the groupon promo code. I tried doing as you said, putting things in the cart, using the groupon code at checkout, closing it, going into my email & clicking on the free business card deal but it bumps out my groupon code & uses the free business card code. Is there a way to get both? Thanks!!

    • I haven't been able to do it either. I want to use my groupon and a coupon code together, but they must be onto that trick by now. I have to order tons of sticky note pads and they are expensive unless I use a promo code as well as my groupon. Anyone been successful recently?

      1 agrees
  28. I suspect that they got wise and now only enable you to use one code for anything.

    I was expecting to make a steal when I got the $27 for $70 Groupon recently, and I tried to purchase our items during their massive sale this week, only the Groupon is redeemed by typing in a code and can't be paired with anything else (as sales and promotions are done by automatically entering a code for you). It also doesn't cover shipping.

    So… we ended up spending $50 for $90 of goods and shipping, which is still a significant discount but not as spectacular as I was hoping.

  29. Great article and good tips on how to save money without too much effort. Saved me a bundle when I ordered business cards for my website design business. I'll make sure to reuse this one again next time I need to order stationary or brochures.

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