Top 5 things to remember when planning a destination wedding
Isn’t it the dream? To be able to have your wedding day on a tropical island in the sun.
Having a destination wedding is becoming very popular, with a good portion of my wedding photography gigs taking me to a range of beautiful overseas destinations.
I have travelled to Thailand recently, for the wedding of Veena & Joel, Hawaii and England in past years, and in a few months time, I have even been asked to capture a wedding in Ireland & Vanuatu. Although, the wedding destination does not need to be an international stop over to make it into this category.
There may be a beach a few hours away, which the two of you have fallen in love with, a garden estate, or country property, which would be perfect for your dream wedding. Some of the most amazing weddings I have witnessed have been right here in Australia. The local destinations I have had the opportunity to visit in recent months have ranged from Noosa to Terrara House Estate, the stunning Bowral wineries, the Hunter Valley & Mount Keira scout hall and many more picturesque south coast NSW destinations.
Though wherever you decide to host your wedding day celebrations, there are a few things you should keep in mind.
1. Do your research:
If you have a particular destination in mind, you will need to make sure carry out a lot of research.
Firstly, check what time of the year is best for a wedding. Weather seasons can play a big factor in deciding on a date for your event.
Next, you will need to make contact with the venue. Booking a date that is available, meets your time frame and gives you enough time to get notice out to your guests is of paramount importance.
Finally, does your chosen venue offer accommodation? You may need to carry out further research for alternate accommodation for family and friends, should there not be enough on site.
Another thing is that finding a local wedding planner for your destination wedding, who will know which local vendors to use, and can take care of the little details like decorations for the reception, will help alleviate any stress for being out of area.
2. Give yourself plenty of time:
A destination wedding adds travel time for your guests. Whether it be a few hours driving or purchasing of flights, the more notice you give your loved ones, the better prepared they will be.
If your plan is to have family stay with you for a longer period of time pre or post wedding, make sure you let them know early. A ‘Save The Date’ notification can assist with the planning for guests as well. Including all the accommodation details, or transport options on offer, can ensure a stress free day for those who need to travel.
3. Check your budget:
Having a wedding at a holiday destination during peak season could incorporate extra charges. Make sure when researching your spot that you know when it is tourist season, as this may hinder people attending.
If your ceremony, reception and accommodation is all through the same venue, don’t be shy in asking for a package deal. Especially if there is a large group of people staying at the venue – the guarantee of bookings could sway the establishment to reduce the price for your guests.
4. Look after your guests:
Arranging transportation for your friends and family, will not only ensure everyone is at your wedding on time, but will also enable your guests to be organised.
Travelling overseas? Then help your guests know where to book, with offering them accommodation and flight details. Or better yet, pass on details of your travel agent to make the booking for them.
Think about also including pre wedding and post wedding activities for your guests, so that they can enjoy the full extent as to what your wedding destination has to offer.
5. Check the local laws
Different countries have different marriage laws, some which are not recognised here in Australia. You may need to confirm whether you will also require a civil ceremony, in order for your marriage to be valid upon returning home.
If you are having your wedding nationally, but outside your local area, you may need to check the local council laws too. If your wedding is in a public area, local councils may require a booking request submission and/or a booking deposit. You wouldn’t want your ceremony ruined because someone has set up camp for the day!
Overall, having a wedding away from home can be a wonderful experience, filled with beautiful memories for years to come. So let us capture those moments for you.
If you are in need of a travelling wedding photographer, contact Kat Stanley Photography on 0434 129 427 or send an email to [email protected]