Your wedding day is one of the biggest days of your life. It is the day that you have been dreaming about since you were a toddler. It is a day that is the beginning of the rest of your life with your other half. So, why should this special day be anything less than perfect?
Destination weddings are becoming more and more popular among couples. In fact, statistics show that 25% of all weddings globally are destination weddings. Interestingly, 80% of these weddings are between people who have been married before, and there is a very good reason for this. People choose destination weddings due to the fact that they can be a lot simpler to organize, with fewer people attending than weddings at home. Destination weddings can also be cheaper due to the reduced guest list and are also far more relaxed than formal weddings. They are also perfect if you want to combine your big day and honeymoon into one unforgettable trip.
If you are thinking of having a destination wedding, you will need to know a few things before simply launching into the idea. As much as it is simpler to have fewer guests and a foreign venue, it can come with its challenges too. We put together a list of all of the things that you need to consider when you decide that a destination wedding is a way you want to go.
Make Sure You Have On-Ground Support
This is one of the most important factors to consider when planning a destination wedding. The fact that you are miles away from the venue means that you will not be able to be fully hands-on with the planning and set up. In fact, many do not even know what the layout of the venue is complete. Many brides rely on images taken of the venue that are either on the internet or that have been sent to them.
It is crucial to have someone at the venue who knows the location, what it has to offer and what can be achieved and cannot. One of the easiest ways to get around this is to be able to choose a venue that offers packages so that you know exactly what is covered and what is not. Take, for example, wedding packages at Rose Hall. These offer the happy couple the options of the venue on the premises, the food options as well as additional services which can simply be included.
Most destinations will offer additional help like photographers, hair, and make-up as well as flower arrangements as you will not know anyone at the destination. It is much simpler to get this organized off the bat with one contact.
Consider the Weather
Destination weddings will take some research before you simply pinpoint the place and decide on the date. If you are north of the equator, you will need to keep in mind that the southern hemisphere is in winter when you are in summer. You will also need to research when the area experiences bad weather during the year.
Take, for example, the East. Should you be getting married in Bali or Thailand, you will need to remember that typhoon season takes place between June to December. With this in mind, you can plan around it. Cape Town in South Africa is another ideal destination wedding. However, Cape Town can be subject to extreme weather. Summer starts at the beginning of November and lasts through to late March, even April, yet, these months can experience gale force winds which will likely heavily impact your wedding plans. Winter in the same city is gloomy, grey and rainy. It could be worth your while, getting in contact with locals who will be able to assist you with advice.
Keep Your Guests in Mind
Whether you have a ballroom size wedding guest list or are inviting only your nearest and dearest to your nuptials, you will need to consult them before simply jetting off to the destination. If you are expecting everyone to pay for their own transport and accommodation, you will need to make sure that they can afford to travel for your special day. Out of courtesy, you will need to set some savings aside for your VIPs to ensure that you can assist and even cover portions of the trip.
You will also need to consider guests’ health, Visa’s and travel allowances. Many couples plan a remote and exotic wedding without keeping in mind guests’ frail health, disabilities or even intolerances to certain countries, climates, and food. Once again, it is important to do thorough research on your chosen destination and plan out everything for your guests. From transport within the foreign country to activities to what they should be aware of in the remote spot, make sure they are fully prepared for any circumstance and have emergency numbers and support packs ready for your guests.
Remember the Dress
Many brides forget about the dress when it comes to a destination wedding. The first thing you will need to consider is the shipping of the dress. You will need to consider the costs involved, whether the country or state will allow it in, whether it will be stuck in customs and how you will package it to ensure that it is not crushed or wrinkled.
The second thing you will need to keep in mind is whether the dress will suit the surroundings. A full ballgown may be totally impractical in the hot humidity in the east, while a skin-tight, revealing tube dress will not be accepted if you are tying the knot in Morocco.
Lastly, Ask Whether it Will be Legal
The last thing to understand when you are planning on getting married away from home is whether the marriage will be accepted in your home country. In many circumstances, you will need to get married in a court of law in your own country and rather have the ceremony in the other country.
Find out exactly what paperwork you need for the marriage before getting on the plane and have it all secured in your luggage and protected. Make sure you get there a few days before to meet with the officiant and local authorities to ensure everything is in order. There are several countries that require you to be in the country for a number of days before they can accept the marriage. Research is once again key.