We have a lot of brides to be coming in recently who are planning their weddings overseas. We thought it might be nice therefore, to do another top tips feature this week. So this week were focusing on our top tips for destination wedding planning! I myself got married overseas so know all about what’s involved in making your destination wedding dream a reality. If you haven’t already seen it, you can read more about my destination wedding here.
You may already know which country you want to get married in, whether it’s barefoot on a beach in Greece, or under a Scandinavian starlit sky. Each country will have their own laws when it comes to marriage. You will need to gain a complete understanding of what documents you may need to arrange and supply, as well as any other requirements before you can be legally married abroad. There would be nothing worse than finding out on your return home, that the final stamp hadn’t actually been made on your marriage.
2. Chosen Destination
As well as the above research, you should also look into your chosen destination in terms of local celebrations, public holidays or festivals. Events such as these may impact on yours and your guests ability to secure accommodation. There is also the increased possibility that any local suppliers you may wish to employ will be unavailable at that time. Then once you have decided on a country/city to get married in, it’s time to research the venue options and which will be most likely to offer the style of wedding you’re hoping for.
3. Wedding Planner
Organising a wedding on home turf can often be challenging in terms of coordinating everything. From suppliers, to timings, to managing the budget, there is a whole host of things to keep track of. Planning a wedding overseas can be more challenging with language/time differences as well as little knowledge of the area itself and opportunities available to you. In this instance, you may find the services of a wedding planner invaluable. Your chosen venue may provide this service, but there will also be independent wedding planners you could look into. Specialist wedding planners will know of all the best suppliers in the area as well as have in-depth knowledge of any cultural or traditional considerations that need to be made.
Cost may well have been a contributing factor to your decision to wed overseas. Destination weddings can work out much cheaper than UK weddings which can run into the tens of thousands before you know it! However, cost may be an obstacle for some of your intended guests so you may have to be prepared for some to have to decline your invitation to be there. There will undoubtedly be some disappointment if guests are unable to attend, particularly those who are particularly close as they will want more than anything to be part of your big day. Some ways to combat this is to give plenty of notice. Send out invitations or save the date cards as far in advance as possible to allow people time to save. There may also be other consideration such as guests with children who may need to arrange childcare for the few days they’ll be away. Of course you could always keep your guest list to a minimum and then throw a huge party once your back home for everyone who was unable to attend.
Your initial assumption may be the you have to use whatever suppliers you can source from the destination you have chosen. That most definitely does not have to be the case. More and more couples are deciding to take suppliers overseas for their wedding. Predominantly photographers but if you have a hairdresser who you couldn’t live without, or a makeup artist who has worked magic for you before, ask if they’re up for a trip! It will undoubtedly cost a little more to take suppliers overuse but the peace of mind you will gain from employing suppliers you trust is priceless.
When it comes to the ceremony time, you will need to consider the local climate. A 1pm ceremony in the Cotswolds will be much more comfortable than a 1pm ceremony in the Mediterranean. An early evening ceremony as the sun goes down however, could be incredibly magical.
7. Wedding Insurance
Whether or not you would take out wedding insurance for a UK wedding, we would seriously consider it for a destination wedding. There is increased potential for obstacles to appear with flights that could end up cancelled. A bout of sickness that inhibits you from flying. A stag that gets chained to a lamppost and misses his flight(!) As disappointing as it would be for you bot if something were to get in the way of your wedding… the real sting in the tail would be the thousands of pounds that were washed away with the tide.
8. The Dress
We stock an incredible range of wedding dresses here at Lisa Rose Bridal Birmingham and we’re sure we will be able to pair you with the perfect gown for your destination wedding. If you’re planning a wedding in warmer climes, think loose, flowy fabrics, nothing too heavy. Alternatively, if you’re planning a wedding on a mountain top, we have some fabulous satin wedding dresses, or wedding dresses with sleeves that will help keep you cosy in the cold!
It may sound like a small thing in comparison to many of the other things you have to worry about when planning a destination wedding. But if you’re thinking of a beachfront wedding, you will need to be mindful of the breeze they come with. I have never known a seaside that doesn’t come with a breeze! And while it’s more often than not a welcome one – cooling in the glorious heat of the sun… it can play havoc with your do. Talk through your plans with your hairdresser and ensure that whatever bridal hairstyle you settle on will stand up to mother nature.
When planning a destination wedding, you may think ‘we’ll walk back down the aisle straight into our honeymoon’. And as fabulous as it will be to spend some additional time with your nearest and dearest after the wedding day itself, make sure you set aside a little time for you both as a newly married couple. Even if it’s simply a couple of nights in a separate hotel, away from the one your wedding party are staying at. You cannot miss out on that quality time together just the two of you.