Having a destination wedding miles away from home means you're in for a much more intimate ceremony and that you can basically enjoy a two-for-one wedding and honeymoon. However, planning such an event is no easy feat. Before jetting off to a foreign land to marry your love, there are some important details to consider.
12–16 Months To Go...
- Work out your budget. This includes most of the typical wedding items, but also travel expenses like airfare and accommodations.
- Draft up your guest list. This will be directly related to your budget.
- Decide on a country or region you'd like to get married in. Be sure to check which seasons have the best weather (and no hurricanes).
- Talk about marriage license options with your fiancé. Marriage requirements vary from country to country. They range from blood tests (no, we aren't kidding) and waiting periods to extra fees. So unless you're planning on running to your nearest courthouse for a civil ceremony prior to the wedding day, find out what the country you've chosen requires in order to make it official. See the country's tourism website for details.
- Do you and your fiancé have your passports or travel visas? If not, start the application process ASAP. (Some countries require that it be valid for a minimum of 6 months prior to the ceremony. Plus, it can take months to process!)
- Hire a planner. Do not skip this step. When it comes to international matters and planning from afar, a seasoned professional is essential in helping you manage the process. Bonus points if they're fluent in your wedding country's language.
Visit in Advance
Ideally, you'll see your venue once before booking, and again three to four months before the wedding to finalise details. If a second trip isn't possible, arrive at least five days early to make those decisions and have hair and makeup trials.
Choose an Appropriate Dress
Carefully consider the climate and terrain of your wedding day when dress shopping. Breathable fabrics work best in hot, humid locations, while dresses made from thick materials are better suited for cooler climates. Lightweight lace in Mexico is stunning as is an embellished ballgown at a villa in France.