Sandy toes and salty kisses, are you about to become Mr and Mrs? At some point in every couple’s wedding planning process, they entertain the idea of a destination wedding.
Let’s set the scene. You and your sweetheart are holding hands on a golden sandy beach with the majestic blue hue of the ocean glistening in the background. The wind is blowing in your hair and the warm sand is tickling your toes as you gaze lovingly into the eyes of the man of your dreams and whisper ‘I do’. Sounds perfect right? To a cool, calm, super chilled bride (or bridechilla as I like to call them), this is the dream wedding. Bridezillas, on the other hand, beware! If you’re tempted, we’ve put together a few pointers to help you decide ‘Is a destination wedding right for me?’
If you’ve been planning every aspect of your wedding day since childhood, a destination wedding may not be for you. You will forget to pack something, somebody will miss their flight or lose their baggage and you will lose the plot. Better stay closer to home, where things are a little easier to keep under control. Whereas if you’re pretty laid back and want a relaxed rather than regimented wedding, then go ahead and wed away.
Do Your Paperwork
If you’re getting married abroad, remember to research the legalities for your chosen country. The rules, regulations and essential paper work around both civil and religious ceremonies vary vastly place to place, so you need to do your homework. Alternatively, you could just have the celebration and blessing abroad and make it official back home.
Let Them Save the Date
If your guests need to travel for your wedding, it’s more important than ever to send out save-the-dates as soon as you can. They’ll need to book flights, accommodation and ask for time off work so need a bit of notice. Similarly, get the full invitations out at least 12 weeks before you take off. Your stationery is also a chance to get everyone excited about the exotic trip! Pull out all the stops and send colourful, tropical, or retro themed destination wedding invitations that will have them dreaming of the beach.
Don’t Expect RSVPs, ASAP
Your guests may take a little longer to RSVP to a wedding abroad, beacue they have more to consider themselves. You’ll also need to embrace the fact that due to practicalities, some guests may RSVP ‘no’. Don’t be glum if some of your mates can’t make it… it will do wonders for your budget! In fact, you have reason not invite everyone in the first place. Planning a destination wedding is a great way to keep numbers down by limiting it to just close friends and family, and are often all the more intimate for it. But if you or your fiancé’ need a lot of people to be there, you might want to reconsider.
No Fun in the Sun
While it may be relaxing to lounge about in the sun before your wedding, please resist all temptation! Weirdly placed tan lines and skin that resembles a lobster is the last thing you need when you’ll be wearing a white wedding dress in a few days, and with lots of photographs.
Keep Your Cool
Beautiful, balmy weather is probably one of the reasons why you want to marry abroad in the first place. But remember those temperatures when you’re trying on outfits back home. For example, avoid thick, synthetic fabrics for your wedding dress and give the three piece suits a miss. Supplying your guests with hand fans will be much appreciated! On Zazzle, you can print them with the details of the day too.
Expect Wardrobe Malfunctions
If you’re having a beach wedding, there may also be be outfit emergencies. Your heels may sink in the sand. Your dress, or your fiancé’s kilt may catch a gust of wind. Or one of your guests may lose their hat. Does that thought make you smile or want to scream? To avoid stilletos sinking in the sand, why not create some comfy custom flip flops for the big day on the beach.
Be Our Guest
At a traditional wedding, you’ll see the guests for a few hours at most. If you’re marrying abroad, chances are your guests will make a holiday out of it. So just make sure you want to spend a week with them – something to consider when narrowing down the guest list.
Location, Location, Location
You want your guests to think ‘Wow, that wedding is so them!’ instead of ‘So, why did they get married on a farm?’, right? Maybe you’re both foodies or into the great outdoors. Perhaps you met on holiday in Marbella or he proposed in Paris. If you’re going to travel, it’s more important than ever to make the location meaningful to you as a couple.
Destination weddings offer a truly unique, intimate and memorable wedding experience. If you’re a perfectionist, with a keen eye for detail and high expectations, then it’s probably best to stick to a more traditional wedding. If you want to share your special day with the people who truly matter, in a low-key, intimate setting then set your sights on the ocean and get planning that beach wedding now!