How do you plan a destination wedding? A: Your dream destination is in the tropics--a magical place that offers secluded spots to celebrate your nuptials in style. Most often these are found in private residences with ample lawns and a private location. Your location may also be a vacation home or second home. In addition to your location, determine what kind of wedding you want to have. Do you want an intimate wedding and honeymoon, or will a larger event accommodate your guests in a more formal way? Many of the resorts and lodges on your dream list have some of these elements available.
Here are the key questions to ask yourself when planning a destination wedding.
Wedding Planning Etiquette
What should I do with my destination wedding?
Based on your available dates and the local season, it depends on whether you want to see a change... a change in the weather with its corresponding effects on the local environment (e.g. monsoon), the high season of tourism, as well as your own schedule. It would be advisable to look into these seasonal changes in advance to make the best of the available options. Knowing the weather pattern would also give you information about whether or not you should plan your trip well before the dates for your wedding.
How am I letting guests know my location?
This quote is very helpful with the "8 to 12 months before the wedding" part. If you want to have a long enough lead time so that guests can make plans, you can also have an extra-long lead time. You simply want to make sure you have enough time to get your invitations out before the wedding.
Who pays for guest accommodations?
It is traditional that guests are expected to cover their expenses of lodging and travel, but you must make it clear that each guest makes this decision. Gracefully let them know your recommendations for choosing accommodations as you mention which reservation websites to book through. If you've booked with someone else, you can also mention that each individual will be responsible for his or her hotel room. If you've booked a block of rooms, emphasize that each guest reserve their room within the block.
Do I need to help people book travel on websites?
A travel agent can help you cut back on travel-related workload by taking charge of group reservations, updating flight numbers, and booking the best hotel, airfare and restaurants. He or she may also be able to snag upgrades or luxury treatments. Start a Facebook Group so you can keep everyone in the loop and share flights deals or make a list of wedding related activities.
Do I need a registry for a destination wedding? Is it really that necessary or helpful?
Given the increased costs of guests attending the wedding, you may want to consider scrapping gifts. Utilize the invitations or wedding website to let everyone know that their presence is the best gift. If you're going to have a registry, be sure that it's on its own website, as having it available on wedding sites only takes away from the wedding experience.
Here are seven things you need to create a destination wedding
Choose your place of work
When deciding on a destination, one must think about the safety of it. Be careful where you are going. It must be safe and have the resources you need. The charming beach town you spent your childhood summers in won't work if its one hotel can't accommodate all your guests or any of their accessibility requirements or childcare needs. Keep in mind that there are no political issues or health concerns in the region. If there are and you aren't deterred, try to get your guests informed about that.
Weigh the possibility of your oldest guest’s traveling by airplane, train, and automobile; in extreme cases where the travel might be problematic, you might consider providing them with other transportation options.
You may want to consider a hotel or B&B.
It is a good idea to send your hotel recommendations within a small radius so that everyone can stay within walking distance of one another. It's important to make a reservation early enough to guarantee availability.
Find deals around your hometown.
We suggest to save money on a vacation by incorporating local items into your itinerary such as olive branches in Tuscany and exotic flowers in the tropics. This also allows you to fully experience the very environment you want to get away from in the first place.
Call an expert.
In the event of destination wedding, your best choice would be to hire a wedding planner who specializes is arranging and hosting destination weddings. That way, instead of spending hours on phone calls trying to overcome a language barrier, or making executive decisions from a long distance, you have an expert taking care of everything for you. If a wedding planner isn't in your budget, find a venue with on site coordinator.
Visit in advance.
According to wedding experts, you always want to make sure you visit your venue at least twice before booking and three to five months before the wedding to finalize the details and make any necessary arrangements. If having a second trip to the venue isn't ideal, arrive a few days early to get everything well prepared.
Get to know vendors
As part of your preparation for your site inspection, arrange meetings with some of the better- known florists in your destination. We suggest asking your venue for referrals. You might uncover local talent you didn’t know about—and some savings to boot. If you are bringing experts from home, it will be your responsibility to cover their travel and lodging costs. We suggest a clean, safe hotel located within 30 minutes of your venue is a pre- requisite.
Host more events.
You don't have to restrict the fun to the wedding day itself; by adding just one extra event, you can make it a memorable trip! Add some extra activities so the wedding weekend is even more interesting for everyone.
Secure wedding insurance is essential.
When preparing for a foreign wedding which is different from a wedding in their respective countries, it's important to be prepared for any unexpected issues. Taking advantage of wedding insurance will make things easier for you in a foreign country and offer them some emotional security too. It's best to get coverage well in advance so that you get clear on what policies there are and the type of coverage you're purchasing.
Look for unexpected expenses.
Destination weddings often get a rap for being budget , but this isn’t always the case. Always allow some wiggle room in your budget for things you weren’t planning or things you weren’t even going to consider but then they sprung up to become part of your special day. Include non-vendor tips and extras, like the welcome party or day-after brunch in your budget. Don't forget to keep in touch with your credit card company to avoid any trouble with foreign transaction fees.
Check local marriage requirements.
It’s hard to make a marriage legal. Each country has different requirements that need to be met prior to the wedding. There’s a whole complex and time consuming process involved in every step of getting a license, a marriage certificate, and even residency proof. The only way to avoid this is to educate yourself on the country's laws far in advance so all pertinent information is in place. *** So your turn 1
Be sure you have all of your passports and other documents.
A valid passport is a must if you want to travel abroad. It will also be helpful to bring driving license if you plan to drive domestically.
Make welcome bags.
When guests stop by your property, it’s a good idea to fill bags with water bottles, snacks, maps, and aspirin for them. Depends on the country, for warm-weather locations offer sunscreen and aloe vera while alpine locations would be mittens.
Put your stuff in that suitcase.
"Whenever we travel, I’ve yet to find a destination outside the continental U.S. that has anywhere near the variety of rental linen and bedding that are available here." As far as packing goes, We suggest that items that can be sent airfreight should be sent no less than a month ahead of time and sent to an individual rather than to a hotel.
Tailor the design of your wedding dress to the wedding destination.
When planning wedding attire, take the weather and terrain of your wedding into consideration during your dress search. If you plan to have a hot location for the wedding, choose light, airy fabrics that will work easily in the heat. You can also find attractive dresses made with lace in Mexico. We suggest carrying your wedding dress on the plane.
Get there gracefully.
Transition to honeymoon phases require a bit of finesse, especially if one has decided to stay on the same resort as guests who have continued their own holidays. It will be necessary to say goodbyes amidst fanfares and after brunch send-offs when one departs on his/her honeymoon. If it's privacy one seeks, move to a different area of the resort. Some resorts have more sophisticated accommodation which is situated separately from other rooms.