Congratulations on your wedding! If you want to leave your hometown and have a wedding at a destination far away from home, here are some tips to make your big day just perfect:
Location, location, location: Having a successful destination wedding first depends on picking the right destination. Pick a destination that you want to have your wedding at, not because your mom or your aunt always wanted to get married there. Most couples pick a destination that means something to them. For example, perhaps you were proposed to in Hawaii and want to return there to tie the knot, or you met in Aruba and an island wedding would mean so much. Some couples choose a destination that honors a passion they have in their life. For example, maybe you are both wine aficionados and want a wedding at a wine region in Tuscany or you are both adventure junkies and want to exchange vows on the White Cliffs of Dover. It’s your day, so pick the right destination for you.
Details, details: You have the right destination for you, but will you be able to pull off the wedding of your dreams? Logistically, can you have a wedding there? Is there enough room for your guests? Can your guests come to your wedding without spending a fortune? It may be out of reach financially for some guests, so you need to be okay with that. What time of the year do you want the wedding? Is it available or do you need to wait for a year or two? Will the wedding be off-season where there are fewer crowds, or during the busy season when the destination may be more expensive? Think about all of your details and if this destination is a fit.
Show me the money: What is your budget? Do you have champagne wishes and caviar dreams, but are on a beer and burger budget? Think about what you can really afford before booking anything. Your wedding should fit into your budget, not bust it. However, The Knot magazine does say that traditional at-home weddings cost couples an average of $30,000, but a destination wedding can be done for a fraction of the cost.
Work with a planner: If you’re definitely set on the destination then work with a destination wedding planner who can help you with all of these fine details. They know the area, so while you are home planning, they can be your eyes and ears at the venue, while working with your budget. They can also work with all of the vendors.
Take a Trip: Even if you have been there before, it’s important to take at least one trip during your wedding planning just to check everything out. You’ll want to see the venue again, talk to the caterers and the photographer and make sure the site is what you remember.
Travel Specialist Group, Inc