Destination weddings are becoming an increasingly more popular avenue to take for excited brides and grooms that want to make their day extra special. Although, it’s hard enough planning a wedding in your own country, let alone somewhere else when there’s so many extra things to consider.
There will be a lot of planning that will be exactly the same, you will still find a dress, invitations and have to narrow down your guest list, but some parts of the planning process will be very different and harder to control.
We’ve put together some of the steps involved to make the day just as special, but ensure you won’t get too stressed.
1. Decide on a Destination
Whether you want to tie the knot on a beach in Thailand, or watching the sunset in Santorini, the sky is the limit with choices. You obviously need to make a list of your wedding destinations together that work for the two of you, and narrow it down from there. Also keeping in ming your loved ones … sometimes Santorini can be a little too far for your best friend because they have work commitments, and Bali would be that little bit easier to get back from quickly and back to reality!
2. Accept that not every one will come
That being said, even if you choose to have it closer to home so some of your guests are more likely to make it, it is inevitable that not all of your loved ones will be able to attend the wedding. It is a lot to ask for all your friends and family to leave their commitments, use their holiday leave and spend what will be a few thousand dollars each on your special day. But if they choose not to come, thats ok! They will most definitely be there in spirit, and it gives you an excuse to have a celebration with those loved ones when you get home.
3. Check the documentation
Before you start planning a perfect wedding in the destination of your dreams, it’s a very good idea to have a check on the documentation you will need to get married in another country. Some countries require a Certificate of No Impediment to Marriage issued by your home government. You will need to get this documentation filled out before you leave your country so this one is best organised first. For more information on this go here.
4. Hire a professional
This may not be for everyone, but for those that are feeling especially swamped with planning a wedding in a place you aren’t so familiar with then hiring someone that knows exactly what to do can be a great help. More and more businesses are popping up that specialise in overseas weddings. Some will take care of all the forms, the venue, photographer, and a few can even take care of the dress! A few great places to have a look at are Marry Me Abroad, My Overseas Wedding and Wedding Destinations.
5. Go and visit
If you have enough time (and the budget isn’t too tight), then go and have a look at some venues you’re planning on booking. This will avoid nasty surprises when you get there as you already know exactly what your booking with the venue and the food. If you don’t have the time or extra money, it is a really good idea to hire a professional in this instance, as they would have the best recommendations.
6. Ask for discounts
Some flights will offer discounts for large group bookings, if your wedding party is all going up at the same time then it is very helpful for everyone involved to get that little bit of a discount to help with the costs. A lot of places will also offer group discounts for accommodation when you are there as well.
7. Enjoy it
You will have a few other things to be checking off your list, but stick to these 7 to ensure your special event is stress free. Not many people get the chance to have a destination wedding, this is really a once in a lifetime thing and if the bride and groom are too stressed to enjoy it then that ruins the point of the whole thing.