Are you fantasizing about a wedding on the beaches of a private island? Or perhaps in the town where you and your fiancé fell in love? Destination weddings are an excellent opportunity to enhance one of the most memorable days of your life. But where do you even begin to make your fantasy wedding a reality?
The complexities involved in a destination wedding can make wedding planning even more challenging. Fortunately, destination weddings have become more prevalent and accessible, making them easier to organize or attend than in the past. With a clear vision and the assistance of a reliable destination wedding planner, you can make your dream wedding a beautiful reality.
Here are some destination wedding tips and advice that will help guide you and get everything on the right track. With the handy tips and advice mentioned here, you can rest assured your destination wedding will run smoothly, and your “I do’s” will be a moment cherished by you and all those present for many years to come.
11 Essential Tips on Planning a Destination Wedding
Organizing the logistics of a destination wedding begins with giving yourself sufficient lead time. Before booking a trip, you should create a checklist and know how to plan a destination wedding. Regardless of where you’re having your wedding, whether on a beautiful tropical beach or in a picturesque mountain village, consider the following tips to ensure everything goes smoothly.
1. Choose your destination.
The first step in destination wedding planning is selecting the best location with your partner. At this point, the world is your oyster. While beach weddings remain the most popular, there are many other possibilities than sand and sea. Do you want to get married in an Italian village? Do it! Prefer a mountain lodge wedding? You can make it happen.
Consider your target number of guests, the cost of their attendance, and where they will be traveling when narrowing down your destination alternatives. Remember to check your chosen destination’s season, time zone, and currency exchange rates.
2. Decide on a wedding package or find a local wedding planner.
When trying to organize the myriad of details that go into a successful wedding, most people engage the services of a professional destination wedding planner. As previously stated, a wedding planner familiar with your chosen wedding venue can make the planning process much smoother and help you save money in the long run. Furthermore, they will act as your on-the-ground representative at your destination, which is critical to ensuring that the entire planning process runs smoothly.
Choosing the right venue, caterer, and guest experiences might be stressful if you’re unfamiliar with the area. It’s advisable to do your research and locate a wedding planner who is also a travel expert. This way, you can be sure that the wedding planner has close ties with local suppliers, is knowledgeable about all the local activities, and has an extensive list of local culinary specialists.
3. Establish a budget.
Set a precise budget for the actual wedding and its accompanying expenses, and a budget for travel and non-local vendors to monitor your expenses. To keep track of how much a destination wedding costs, it is essential to consider the destination’s currency, especially when you’re finalizing your budgeting details.
4. Manage your guest list.
Another essential step in the wedding planning process is to create a preliminary guest list to determine the size of the wedding and the number of people you’ll have to budget for. Asking guests to plan flights, book hotels, and take a few extra days off work or away from their children will likely reduce the number of individuals attending your destination wedding.
It is expected that only 60% of the guests that were invited to your destination wedding will attend. Knowing that your guest list will likely be smaller than if you had your wedding back home can reduce your spending on essentials like food, drinks, and venue size.
5. Consider the local marriage requirements.
Getting married legally in a foreign country is more complex than finding an officiant. Individual countries have different criteria and document requirements. Foreign countries may require anything from birth and medical certificates to letters of intent, no impediment declarations, and even proof of residency. It is always a good idea to conduct extensive research and prepare in advance to ensure everything goes smoothly on your wedding day.
6. Secure passports and other documents.
A valid passport is required for foreign travel, while a current driver’s license is required for domestic travel. Check all expiration dates as soon as you’ve decided on your wedding date and location, and then check again! Additional information, such as a list of previously visited countries, health records, or vaccines, may be requested depending on the country.
7. Select an appropriate destination wedding dress.
When going dress shopping, keep the weather and terrain of your wedding day in mind. Breathable fabrics function well in hot, humid settings, whereas thicker fabrics work better in cooler temperatures.
8. Decorate in a minimalist manner.
While you may have spent hours researching creative DIY wedding decorations, the last thing you need is luggage cluttered with wedding decorations. Consult your wedding planner for assistance and, wherever possible, adopt a minimalist approach.
9. Look for accommodation designed for group bookings.
Organizing a destination wedding will always involve logistical problems; typically, these will occur in areas like organizing accommodations. One way to minimize logistical problems is to look for accommodations designed to handle group bookings.
When a group stays in one place, it is much simpler to organize things from a logistics point of view. Furthermore, there may be the added advantage that guests can prevail of a group discount. Most people will feel more at ease when staying with their friends, relatives, and other wedding guests, plus they may even save a little money.
10. Plan some events for your guests.
While the ceremony and reception should be your top priorities, you and your guests will likely spend more time at your destination than simply for the wedding. Plan a wedding welcome party, group outings, and dinners to keep the festivities entertaining.
11. Incorporate your honeymoon into your travel plans.
You’ve already shelled out the cash to fly overseas, so there’s no point in spending it again on something other than your honeymoon. Don’t forget that while the festivities may be over for other people, your married life is just beginning. Whenever you and your spouse feel it’s appropriate, thank everybody for coming, say goodbye and retire for some quality time together.
A destination wedding away from home guarantees a far more intimate ceremony and honeymoon all in one trip. However, organizing such an event can be overwhelming. So, before heading out to a distant country to wed your significant other, consider the destination wedding tips and advice mentioned above to minimize the stress and turn the wedding of your dreams into reality.
Express your Love and Say your “I Do’s” at New Denver Lodge.
Marriage is one of the most unforgettable events that can happen in someone’s life. For that reason, make it more memorable by celebrating it at New Denver Lodge. With its breathtaking scenery, romantic ambiance, friendly, experienced management, and modern amenities mixed with rustic charm, New Denver Lodge is a truly unique wedding venue that turns this big day into the wedding of your dreams.