I'm always getting asked, "Can I have this book by...." then there is usually a date at the end of this question. Most of the time I'm able to create a book and have it shipped within the time frame. However, alot of times to ensure the package arrives on time I have to charge priority shipping.
And, 90% of the time we're talking soft cover or premade books that I already have made in my shops.
So the big question for today, How soon should you be looking for a guest book?
There is no easy answer to this question, but here's a little advice.
If you're planning on having a custom, one-of-a-kind guest book made, I'd start searching as soon as you know the date of your occasion. Many times, book binders and other talented people need at least 2-4 weeks to create your special order. This doesn't include time for it to arrive once it's been shipped. Which depending on your location could take anywhere from 2 days to 14 days.
(That's why I ship a lot of my larger guest books and rush jobs via priority mail.)
Secondly, don't wait until Wednesday to have something shipped for Saturday. There's nothing worse than waiting for the mailman to arrive and wondering if you're package will make it on time.
If you're buying something pre-made, order two weeks (at least) before the event. I don't mind last minute orders, but it's a lot better on your stress level if you ensure you have a few days cushion for the mail man to deliver.
And lastly, when your shopping around for a guest book or any other book for your special occasion make sure you know who soon your item will be shipped. Pre-made orders from my shop are shipped within 48 hours of receipt of payment. Most custom orders take on average two weeks for me to complete. Every book binder and shop has their own time frame, make sure you and the shop your ordering from are on the same page when it comes to creation time, packaging, and shipping time.
If all else fails, ASK. It only hurts when you don't.
Have you started searching for your guest book yet? Why not? and when do you plan to start?