Planning Your Destination Wedding

Dream weddings do not necessarily equate to traditional church weddings anymore. Many women dream of beach weddings in a tropical paradise; where the sand is between their toes, the sun shines brightly on their skin and their loved one is beside them relaxing. Having a beach wedding is one type of destination wedding. Another type of destination wedding is in a garden setting. The destination wedding could be referred to as a location wedding or elopement wedding.

Destination weddings require many considerations. A couple planning a wedding must first look into cost of the location, legal requirements, date, seasonal details, budget, and travel arrangements. A destination wedding is an increasing trend. Several resorts now offer complete wedding packages. According to a survey online, the top beach wedding destination is Cancun, Mexico. It is closely followed by Mount Desert Island in Maine, Cape Breton in Nova Scotia, Vancouver Island in British Columbia and St. Thomas in United States Virgin Islands.

For couples who may plan to marry abroad, applying for the marriage certificate varies from one place to another. It is best to consult the local embassy of the “wedding destination” foreign country regarding marriage requirements. After the legal requirements have been arranged and the location is set, selecting the best date is the next step. Considerations like season and weather are vital in choosing the date. Checking into the best wedding season of the country where the couple plans to wed is important. The areas local festivities are a consideration, since it may affect the availability of the venues, suppliers and transportation.

Another essential matter is the guest list. Invitations are to be sent at least six months before the wedding to make sure the availability for guests ability to travel. In most cases, couples pay for accommodation and travel expenses of their guests. Otherwise, guests have to be informed they must cover their own fees. Since travel and accommodations expenses take a large share of the budget in this kind of wedding; it is advisable to cut back expenses in areas like bridal materials, invitations, flowers, photography or videography. Trimming down the guest list to family, relatives and close friends will help to reduce cost.

Destination weddings can be a small ceremony with a few friends or a very large celebration with extended family and several friends. Many couples will look for complete destination wedding and honeymoon packages. An online survey listed the top 10 most visited honeymoon places in world; Paris, Rome, Venice, Florence, Sydney, London, Tahiti, French Riviera and Fiji.

Melissa Reed, Cloud Nine Wedding Officiants
August 1, 2013


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