Have you always dreamed of hosting a destination wedding in a unique location? Thankfully, it’s never been easier to plan a wedding in another state or country. Whether it’s Jamaica, Iceland, England, or something in between, you have plenty of accessible options to choose from.
Why Have a Destination Wedding?
Destination weddings offer the bride and groom a number of unique benefits, including:
- Less drama. There’s often drama about where to host a wedding. One side of the family wants you to get married in a certain church that’s symbolic to the family tree. The other side of the family would prefer you to get married at their farm. Being forced to choose can create unnecessary drama that takes away from the magic of the day. A destination wedding allows you to circumvent all of this and pave your own way. As a result, nobody’s feelings are hurt and it doesn’t seem like you’re playing favorites.
- More cost effective. Believe it or not, a destination wedding can actually be more cost-effective than a local wedding. (Not always – but it can be.) For starters, the number of guests is usually much smaller. If you invite 400 people to a wedding in your hometown, you might have 300 show up. But if you invite that same number of folks to a destination wedding, there might be just 75 to 100 folks. This reduces your costs by allowing you to host a smaller event. Plus, many destination weddings offer wedding packages that combine services. This usually provides some additional savings.
- Memorable. There’s a certain “wow” factor to destination weddings. While most church and farm weddings tend to blur together over the years, your guests will remember the time they flew to Costa Rica for a wedding and attended a reception in the rainforest.
When it’s all said and done, a destination wedding affords you and your guests numerous benefits. If nothing else, you owe it to yourselves to look into the possibility of planning a destination wedding.
5 Tips for Planning Destination Weddings
As you plan a destination wedding, there are several unique factors that you’ll want to carefully consider. Let’s take a look at some top tips, as sourced from destination wedding planners:
- Choose the Right Destination
When it comes to destinations, it really all comes down to preference. If you’ve always dreamed of having a wedding in Africa, have a wedding in Africa. If you’ve always dreamed of Paris, make Paris happen. However, if you’re flexible, there are some considerations to take into account.
For starters, think about convenience. If the majority of your guests live in the northeast United States, for example, an Iceland wedding is much more convenient than a wedding in, say, Hawaii. Cost is another factor. How expensive is it to travel to the destination, and what kind of accommodations do they have for your dates?
- Get the Guest List Right
You don’t have to go crazy with your guest list for a destination wedding. Stick to close friends, family members, and people who you think are most likely to come. You also need to understand that the percentage of people who RSVP will be much smaller for a destination wedding than a local wedding. Don’t let this hurt your feelings – it’s just the way it is. Not everyone has the time or money to leave home for several days to attend a wedding.
- Be Thorough With Communication
Communication with guests is extremely important for a destination wedding. Be as thorough as possible with details on locations, accommodations, scheduling, attire, and anything else they might have questions about. You might even want to create an entire FAQ page on your wedding website to answer the questions you’re most likely to get.
- Plan Events for the Weekend
Most people are going to arrive a day or two early and stay a day or two after the wedding. Make sure you plan some different events for them to attend, including a welcome party, rehearsal gathering, reception, and maybe even a brunch the day after the wedding.
- Ship Items Ahead of Time
If you’re bringing any items with you to the wedding – including wedding decorations – be sure to ship them ahead of time. This prevents any issues with delays and gives you one less thing to worry about on the wedding weekend.
Plan Your Dream Wedding
Throwing a wedding is a once-in-a-lifetime event. If you want to make it as fun and memorable as possible, consider a destination wedding. Whether it’s Costa Rica, Iceland, or the Rocky Mountains, the options are limitless!