Top Ten Tips for Planning a Destination Wedding
Those incredible photos of destination weddings are beautiful. But what they don’t show are the hard work and planning that goes on behind the scenes to make things run smoothly. We sat down with Alexandra Honey of Jane Alexandra Concierge Travel to compile a list of the top 10 secrets for putting together a flawless and fabulous destination wedding to remember. Here’s what she had to say.
Location is everything when planning a destination wedding, and not all locations are created equal. Every location will have a different personality, a different flavor, a different feel. What do you envision when you’re walking down the aisle?
2 Timing is Everything
When planning your destination wedding, timing is everything. Mother Nature waits for no man or woman. Take into consideration the rainy season, lower temperatures throughout the year, high and low season concerning price, and hurricane season.
3 Check with Family and Friends
Give your guests ample notice, and make sure your big day doesn’t collide with other major life events, especially if you want that person to attend. However, as much as you want to please everyone it will be absolutely impossible. Set your date and stick to it.
4 Be Prepared for the Unexpected
Life is full of unexpected moments. It is how you plan and execute those moments that define your event! When planning a destination wedding we have a contingency plan in place for anything and everything that can possibly take a u-turn.
5 Research Local Marriage Requirements
Local marriage requirements in the country couples are getting married in may affect the legitimacy of the wedding certificate in the United States. Regulations, guidelines, and fees must be met when legally getting married outside the United States. To bypass these regulations, more and more we are seeing the bride and groom discreetly get married in the United States and then take their group to Mexico or the Caribbean to celebrate what they consider the “real” wedding without the restriction of local government.
6 Factor in Extra Expenses
It is always good for a bride to factor in extra expenses because a bride may arrive on property and decide she wants something extra added. When we plan a destination wedding, the bride and groom know all of their expenses up front. If they left their wallet at home they would still be in good hands.
7 Ask for Help
What most people don’t realize when having a destination wedding is the planning and execution that happens behind the scenes. The bride and groom will not have the time or energy to be the host, entertainer, and
wedding coordinator all in one. Share your vision with a professional and let them take the lead for you.
8 Vet Your Vendors
I highly discourage a bride and groom hiring local vendors on their own. Not only do they not know the legitimacy of the company they are using, but if something goes wrong or is not delivered on time, the bride and groom have to scramble and take time away from their guests. Hire a consultant to take care of all of the vetting for you.
9 Take Care of Your Guests
It is always a nice touch for the bride and groom to give a welcome gift to the guest when they arrive at their location. Welcome gifts may include a schedule of events, a wedding momento, and something specific to their location.
10 Organization is Key
Do your research and have a clear vision of what you want for your destination wedding. Let the distance make you decisive, and rely heavily on your wedding planner.
Written by Jackie Tucker