Destination Weddings: Follow This Outline to Create the Wedding of Your Dreams

Planning a Destination Wedding: Follow these steps for the wedding of your dreams.

So you have weighed the pros and cons of having a destination wedding, You have spoken to friends and family, maybe even someone like me about the process, and now you are ready to proceed with your destination wedding. Every bride wants her wedding day to be picture perfect, and I would say that your destination wedding should even be more than picture perfect, especially given the fact that you will be getting married in a beautiful location. Great destination weddings don’t just happen; they are the result of a lot of hard work and proper planning. With that in mind, here is a great outline of the steps you need to take in order to have your dream destination wedding.

  • Plan Early: It takes time to put together a wedding getaway. You and your guests will need adequate time and money to secure the accommodations and flights.
  • Decide on a destination and location: Miles of white sand beaches, crystal blue waters, lush botanical gardens, exotic waterfalls, picturesque sunsets, and emerald mountains, so many destinations, so many choices! The best destination wedding location depends on your personality. The key is to match the perfect destination and location to your personality as a couple. A wedding consultant can make this process easy and successful.
  • Secure The Date ASAP: Destination wedding popularity is increasing and dates for weddings get filled up fast. Once you know where you want to go, you will want to secure your wedding date at the location as soon as possible in the planning process. It is easier to change the date later, than miss out on the date you want. A destination wedding specialist can do all of this for you, saving you hours of stress and time.
  • Decide on a Budget for you and your guests: Once you have the basics in place, you will need to think about your personal budget as well as a budget for your guests. The bride and groom usually save about 10,000 dollars when doing a destination wedding over a traditional wedding, but your guests will pay more. Try to stay in a price point you can afford. Many resorts offer a multitude of wedding packages that include your ceremony and reception. Choose the one that gives you the most quality at the price you can afford. A consultant can usually get great group rates for you and your guests.
  • Start a guest list: Once you know your destination and budget, it will be time to decide on who you would like to have at your wedding. There will of course be certain people who you definitely want there, and then you can begin to decide on the others. Keep in mind the age and health of your guests. Some people may not be healthy enough for a long trip or a lot of walking. Also, some of your guests may not have the financial means to go to your wedding.
  • Length of Stay: When trying to decide on your length of stay, you will need to decide if you will be planning to get married legally in the country that you are staying in, or if you will be getting married in the U.S first, and then having a symbolic ceremony. There are advantages and disadvantages to both. Talking to a consultant can really help you decide on which option is best for you in your unique situation.
  • Flights: The lowest airfare is not always the best option for your destination wedding. You should be on a flight that will get you to your resort as quickly as possible. You don’t want to have an 8hr lay over somewhere and arrive at your resort too late to enjoy your first day that you have already paid for. Not all flights are created equal.
  • What Do You Pay For? Your guests should pay for their vacation package to your destination. That includes their air fare, hotel accommodations, and transfers to and from the airport. You should pay for any activities, events, dinners, or transportation that your guests will need to go to because you have scheduled it for them. Having your wedding at a good all-inclusive resort will include all of your food and drinks at the resort, as well as, many activities that the resort sponsors.
  • What about Children? There are many great resorts that accommodate children and families. Many have family and adult only areas of the resort to provide the best of both worlds. The resorts we recommend to our clients have kids clubs and day care to allow you and your guests more time to relax.
  • Legal Requirements: You will need to know what the legal requirements are to get married at your destination. Your destination wedding consultant knows all of the legal requirements for the locations you are looking to get married at.

This outline should help make planning your tropical wedding much easier and ensure that you truly get the wedding of your dreams.

Cheap Wedding Venues – 6 Top Money Saving Tips

These 6 top money-saving tips on cheap wedding venues are the result of extensive research coupled with experiences from couples who have benefited from them. These strategies have helped them spend less on their wedding while still ensuring that they have their dream wedding.

1. The wedding date

Take some time to choose and agree on a wedding date that falls during the wedding off-season period but still holds special meaning to the both of you. The off-season period may differ depending on the country you are going to celebrate your wedding in. It could mean certain months of the year, certain days of the week or even certain times of the day. You can easily negotiate to secure cheap wedding venues during the off-season period when the business is not as competitive.

2. Number of invited guests

Your wedding is the most important day of your life. You want this to be an unforgettable and memorable event. Of course, it’s your wedding! Both of you will have to agree on who to invite to your wedding. The number of invited guests will decide the choice of cheap wedding venues.

3. Combine the venues of the wedding reception and ceremony

You could save a lot of money if you have your wedding ceremony and reception at the same place. Don’t forget that you have to be mindful of the number of guests invited; especially if the ceremony and reception is held in an enclosed area like a chapel or hall. However, you could always avoid this restriction by having a beach wedding!

4. Cheap wedding venues that are just right for you

Once you have determined your wedding date and the number of guests, you can start looking through a list of cheap wedding venues and pick the one that suits you best. The following cheap wedding venues can offer you a unique and cheap wedding with the right planning:

• At a park – Start from the list of parks you two are familiar with. You would usually have some special romantic memories in one of these parks so it would be especially meaningful to get married here. This option will also save you the expenses of at least the facilities hiring fee.

• By a river – A riverside wedding is quite special and unique. A River Foreshore is so beautiful that your wedding will be romantic for you and enjoyable for your guests. Remember to check with the local council for any restriction to have your wedding at the river foreshore. You can also choose to have your wedding on a River Cruise liner. This unique experience may become the highlight of your town.

• At the beach – Many of you dream of a beach wedding. The crashing waves and sand beneath your feet; everything is just so naturally and amazingly beautiful. The beach is one of the most popular cheap wedding venues. You could make this experience even more memorable by having a sunset beach wedding ceremony followed by a simple wedding reception, which would also definitely cut down your wedding expenses. Keep in mind that getting married at a public beach or a private beach may have different restrictions. Confirm and adhere to these restrictions as part of your wedding ceremony and wedding reception plan. Make sure to include cleaning up after the event as another part of your plan too.

• Your backyard – When you decide to have a private and small wedding, a backyard wedding is at the top of the list. The savings will include wedding venue expenses and also food and beverages. Your backyard would already offer beautiful and natural floral arrangements. All you need to add is a bit of party decor to make it even more beautiful. Your choice of food could be from catering; or you could mix it up and do a wedding barbeque or even a tea party! Of course, having your wedding in your backyard may involve a lot of work. However, with careful planning and a bit of creativity, you can turn your backyard into the fairytale wedding of your dream. It is definitely well worth the effort.

• Local community halls – Another option for cheap wedding venues is the local community halls. These are usually available for hire at a very low rate. Besides, they tend to be equipped with tables and chairs which are available for rent. Inquire about their preferred vendors who give other facilities for any event as you can often get a very special rate if you use their regular vendors. When you need to invite a bigger group of guests, a local community hall would usually be a more affordable option.

• Institution halls – Many universities and colleges have big campus halls which are available for rent to hold the wedding ceremony and reception. Some cities also have city halls which are available for rent. Take some time to check these out. This is definitely another option for a cheap wedding venue that’s worth exploring.

• Churches – Walking down the aisle at the church symbolizes the beginning of a new life with your spouse. This is especially meaningful for Christian couples. There is no specific rental fee if you choose to use a church chapel to carry out your wedding ceremony before proceeding to use the church hall for your wedding reception. However, you should present a voluntary gift to the church for making use of the facilities.

• Any new venues that are less popular – Look for restaurants or hotels that have recently opened. They are usually more open to negotiations and can offer a good discount. This could work out to be a win-win situation for both parties as a perfect wedding reception would help them to promote their future business, and you would reap the benefits of reduced costs without compromising on quality.

5. Work out the total expenses

Decide on your wedding venue option from the list of cheap wedding venues available. Then remember to work out the total expenses required. The expenses may include the rental of tables and chairs, decorations, stage set up etc. You should also consider the type of wedding menu.

6. Have a Backup Plan

Cheap wedding venues may save you thousands of dollars. But no one can guarantee you perfect weather on your wedding day. Therefore, I cannot stress enough that you should always have a backup plan if you have chosen an outdoor wedding venue. Having said that, you should not let a little rain ruin your perfect day.

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