Friday, April 23, 2010

For The Bride and Groom: The Ten Things You Need To Know To Have a Fantastic Destination Wedding

Author: TBofF 

1. First and foremost as a couple you need to decide what would you like to spend on your Destination Wedding? Make a list of your needs and wants for your wedding. Consider your guests; remember in most situations your guests may have to pay for their own accommodations. 

2. All-inclusive vs. Not? Depending on where you are going you will be facing this question. The best thing about an all-inclusive is almost everything is done for you. The best thing about a location that isn’t is price. Most non-inclusive resorts run at a lower price. You do have to consider extra costs like food and off location travel. 

3. Location, Location, Location. Now you’ve figured out your budget so, where would you like to get married? Do you want the backdrop of the ocean, a beautiful majestic castle, an intimate hot air balloon ride for two? Choosing a theme or locale for your wedding makes it much easier to decide the best destination to get married in. 

4. How many guests do you think will attend? This is essential for booking the trip. Many airlines and resorts offer large group discounts which may be beneficial for you and your guests. You may also get incentives i.e. a free room per every 25 guests. You also want to decide on whether you will have to book a banquet room, or small outdoor area for your reception. 

5. So you have your location, you’ve set your budget, and you’ve figured out your guest list... Now you can decide on your favourite date. You definitely want to research weather and seasons for your location. For example hurricane season for the Caribbean is June – November so you may want to avoid those months. Always remember to have a few back-up dates as a precaution. 

6. Once you have the date figured out you’ll want to send out your save-the-date cards. You want to send these out in advance so your guests are prepared. Invitations should follow once a destination, location, and date is set and confirmed. If you are offering group travel you want to give your guests enough time to book.

7. Will You be using a Wedding Coordinator? There are some benefits to having a coordinator at home. They help with finding the destination, getting quotes, getting you the best value for your buck, and the necessary requirements for marrying in your destination. If you choose to not have a coordinator do your extensive research and request quote from different providers. Or look into a travel agent. Remember there is almost always a coordinator at hand when you get too your destination 

8. You have the perfect location... what requirements and legalities are required to marry in your destination? The last thing you’d want to figure out too late is that you needed to be in your destination for a month before you could marry! Do some extensive research and ask the location you are staying at. Make sure you have all the required forms and documents BEFORE you get to your destination. 

9. What type wedding packages do they offer at your location? This will help you figure out the extra costs that might be added depending on your wants and needs. Most places offer a basic wedding package which usually includes the costs for the ceremony, a small cake, and a simple floral package at a great price. If you do your research you may discover that some places offer free weddings as another group rate incentive. 

10. Figuring out the packages offered will help greatly with figuring out what wedding vendors you will need?If the location doesn’t offer the kind of vendors you want you may have to go off location. Make sure you speak with the coordinator to understand their rules about off location vendors. Some location will even offer a list of their trusted vendors. 

These 10 tips and tricks are essential things to consider when planning your destination wedding. They are things that should be considered before you go! There are some things that will be easily found on location and your onsite coordinator will be able to help with those. Remember your travel requirements too... sometimes you plan so much you forget the simple things like an up-to-date passport. But most of all get ready to enjoy a fabulous wedding away from home in front of your dream backdrop with your wonderful family and friends, or in an intimate sending with just your soon to be husband or wife!

About the Author: The Beginning of Forever began in 2006 with owner Renee Ferguson. Renee Ferguson, is a Certified Wedding Coordinator and Consultant, Destination Coordinator, and a Sandals Certified Specialist. She specializes in Budget Concious weddings, Destination Weddingmoons, essentially helping brides get a Grand wedding on a Great budget. 

Renee Ferguson has been a part of the wedding industry for 8 years starting out in Wedding Dress design and Reception Decoration and after Graduating from the Wedding Planners Institute of Canada moved into Wedding Coordination.

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