Planning a Destination Wedding
Planning a Destination Wedding
You all know how much I love to travel, so it would make sense that I LOVE weddings abroad too. There is something so magical about getting your nearest and dearest on a plane somewhere special to celebrate your nuptials together. Not only do you get to see a different part of the world with those you love, but you are also able to ensure the people at your wedding are the ones who truly care about you the most. For couples struggling to whittle down that invite list, getting married abroad can sometimes do the natural selection for them.
There are obviously more reasons beyond that to plan your wedding somewhere far from local. For some couples with family spread across the country, it may just make more sense with everyone already having to travel anyway. For others who have never particularly loved the place they call home, the allure of some far-away locale as their wedding backdrop can sometimes be too tempting to pass up. There are also many brides who grew up just picturing their wedding somewhere different from what they have always known. Often that includes toes in the white sand of some tropical beach for those who have grown up far from large bodies of water, but really – it can be anything. That picture you have always had in your head; a picture often difficult to ignore when it comes time for the planning to begin.
Whatever your reason for choosing a wedding abroad, I support you! Expand your horizons and see the world, bringing those you love along for the ride and adventure as well. What better way could there possibly be to exchange your vows and commit yourselves to each other? Before you hop on a plane though, there are some tips you should keep in mind for the planning.
First of all, this is one of those instances where you really do need a wedding planner. Pulling together the details for a wedding in your own backyard is one thing, but making it all happen thousands of miles away is something different entirely. You need the guidance of an expert here, someone with connections to all the local vendors and the finesse to pull off the event of your dreams. Trust me, when it comes to planning a wedding abroad – you will never regret the money you spend on a professional planner.
Once you decide on a location for your wedding, start looking into packages that might be available. Maybe you want to take a cruise to your wedding locale; call up the cruise line and see if they can offer you any group discounts or celebratory extras. If you picture more of a resort location for your family and friends to enjoy the festivities at, start looking for packages that will provide meals and entertainment as well. Weigh your options and be prepared to give your guests a rundown of what costs will be for them as well.
When it comes to traveling your guests are going to ask you every question under the sun. Plan on preparing as much as you can to preemptively cover a lot of these questions. I suggest making a wedding website. Post all travel information, schedules and even what type of clothing to pack. You can post the weather report and other details about the location. Remember that they will be traveling a long way to see you say “I do”, so you really do owe it to them to make that as painless a journey as possible.
If you plan to bring your favorite photographer to document your destination wedding consider more than just photography of the wedding. Events such as welcome & rehearsal parties, brunches and BBQ’s may also warrant documenting. Consider documenting the highlights of your entire party week. The photographer will have to arrive early no matter what to guarantee there are no travel delays. Invite them to all your events as a guest and pay for the events that are most important to you. You just might be surprised at the extra complimentary coverage you receive by treating your photographer as well as you treat your family.
The final thing to keep in mind is the legality of your wedding ceremony. If you are getting married out of country, different rules and regulations apply. This is another are where having an expert involved can be crucial. You don’t want to get back to the states only to find out that your beautiful ceremony didn’t actually count for much of anything. Take your time and do the research; it will be worth it in the end.
After you have decided where to go and have started to hammer out all the details, feel free to send me an email. There is nothing I love more than weddings with an opportunity to also create travel images as well. We can make your wedding worthy of a photo-spread in Travel & Leisure Magazine!