Today’s guest post is by freelance writer and free spirit Anna Crowe. Enjoy!
A wedding is an event of a lifetime. However, getting married the traditional way was an overwhelming thought for me. An intimate gathering with our closest family and friends in a relaxed setting…and maybe a margarita or two was more for us. So if you’re planning to pack a suitcase and escape to a dreamy destination for your nuptials consider these six tips:
Read the full post after the cut!
Location Location Location
Photo Credit: GBR Helicopters
Where your wedding takes place will likely be remembered more than the event itself. For instance, the lush tropics of Cairns, Australia, lends itself to outstanding wedding photos. Your guests will get a mini vacation while celebrating your nuptials. If your location requires family members to obtain passports, be considerate enough to send “Save the Date” cards to them in time to handle all the necessary arrangements to be able to make it to your big day.
Outdoor weddings require good weather, or at the very least, comfortable temperatures. Don’t neglect your research of weather and climate. Be aware of the climate cycles from season to season. You don’t want to plan a lovely tropical wedding in Thailand, only to be drenched in 24-hour downpours during the rainy season. Be up to speed on rainy versus dry seasons, tide cycles, wind speed and strength. If a mountain retreat is more your style, make sure the location is easily accessible regardless of snow accumulation.
Let’s be perfectly honest about a destination wedding where guests are concerned. Often, only the very closest people can or are even willing to attend. This alone may be one reason destination weddings are so popular. There are no worries about drunk Uncle Jack or Aunt Lavender, who smells more like mothballs, showing up and embarrassing the bride.
The guests who do attend will have a lot of questions and, as stated in the location paragraph, may need several weeks or months to prepare. Please be as detailed as possible regarding location, time, dress code, accommodation and restaurants.
Be specific when describing dress code. You don’t want half your guests in beach gear and the other half in formal wear. The photos will look odd!
Photo Credit: Wedding Chicks
A welcome and thoughtful gesture for traveling guests is the welcome bag. While it’s not necessary to treat your guests like they’re attending the Oscars in Hollywood, California, remember, your guests have put a lot of time, trouble and expense into attending your wedding. Walking into their hotel room and finding a personalized welcome gift is a good way to set the tone for the overall experience. Local shopping and eatery brochures, an interesting book on local history and tickets to a museum or art gallery will be appreciated and remembered. If uncertain what would make good welcome presents, speak with the hotel concierge for ideas.
When working on your budget for the big event, be sure to include accommodation and airfares. While it seems overwhelmingly costly, don’t count it out without looking into it. Many all-inclusive wedding packages cover accommodation, airfare and honeymoon. Depending on the number of guests, you could possibly save money with a destination wedding versus staying in your hometown.
If you’ve decided on a wedding in a location with a culture distinctly different than your own, embrace the local flavor. Use local flowers, foods and music as much as possible. Learn to speak the local language to get insider tips. After all, what is the point of a destination wedding if not to have something different than you could have at home?
Brush up on the local laws regarding noise, alcohol, dancing, etc. when considering a wedding theme. Nothing ruins a special event faster than finding you’ve unknowingly broken the law.
Weddings are exciting to plan and destination weddings are that much more fun to plan and anticipate. In many ways, they’re easier because you’re phoning or emailing a hotel concierge and they do all the work. It offers peace of mind and keeps our inner bride control freak at bay. You and your guests simply show up and enjoy. That alone is very good justification for a destination wedding!
Anna is a self-taught dreamer of innovation, a flower child of her generation, and self-proclaimed world beer enthusiast. In the real world, when the cape comes off, Anna is a freelance writer/wannabe blogger, social media marketer, and part time mom of Norman, the bassethound. She also loves peanut butter. Follow her on Twitter.
Are you planning a destination wedding? Do you have any questions or comments for Anna? Add them to the comments below!