What could be more romantic and exciting than a destination wedding? Share the adventure with a small number of family and friends for an intimate affair that’s bound to be a memorable experience for everyone involved.
Here are some things to consider when planning a destination wedding:
- Choose the perfect location
Your location should say something about your personality, style and passion. If a traditional church, beach or resort wedding isn’t to your liking, you can always consider private residences, boutique hotels or unique wedding venues such as museums, national parks or even castles.
Your location not only affects the mood of the wedding, but it also influences the effort, time and budget required to make it happen. When choosing your location, you need to take into account your guests’ travel time and expenses. You don’t want to make it too difficult for them to attend your wedding. Tell everyone up front and let them know the possible costs, and make sure they know they can gracefully decline if finances are tight and it won’t hurt your feelings.
To heighten your guests’ experience, choose a venue where there are some optional activities that they can participate in before or after your actual wedding day.
- Research local marriage requirements
If you’re getting married abroad, check the laws of that country before booking your wedding. Many countries have a residency requirement, although some for only a few days.
- Timing is everything
Do you want your wedding to be held during the high season when your chosen place is crawling with tourists and when prices are high? On the other hand, the off season might be a time when half the restaurants and shops are closed and there’s nothing going on there. Think about going just before or after the peak season when things will be less crowded and you can often get bargain prices.
It pays to check the weather. Look at the average temperatures for the month you’re planning. Ensure that your venue has a backup plan in case of bad weather.
- Visit the location
Visit your location to get to know the area, and scout and secure your venue. Some places look great in pictures only, and then some venues might have serious limitations in terms of amenities. Ask early about possible vendors. Once you’re there, you can adjust your expectations and make the best decision.
- Get help from a local wedding planner
It’s best to hire a wedding planner when you are dealing with a destination that’s not familiar to you. A local wedding planner can research and secure local vendors, and deal with all related logistics.
- Carefully vet your vendors
Make at least one planning trip to meet with your local wedding planner and potential vendors. Get a sense for a potential vendor’s attitude and personality before signing the contract. Check a lot of reviews and get references from vendors to ensure they can be trusted to get things done according to your preferences.
- Stick to your budget
Be mindful of your predetermined budget and stick to it. A destination wedding is also like a vacation and it’s easy to spend here and there, and before you know it, you’re way over budget.
Destination weddings definitely require a lot of organisation. But you shouldn’t have to worry too much about the logistics of your wedding when you have made careful preparations early.
(Image Credit: Destination Wedding)