Having a destination wedding can be an exciting adventure, but not without following proper planning and etiquette. If you’ve never attended or know what to expect from a destination wedding, the following tips can help ensure your wedding goes off without a hitch. So, without further ado, here’s what you need to know about destination wedding etiquette.
1. Keep the Guest List Small
If you decide to have a destination wedding, keep in mind you’ll be paying a lot more than you would with a traditional ceremony. You’ll have to pay for more than just the venue, food, and drinks. Some wedding planners pay for their guests’ plane tickets and accommodations, so if you’ll be doing that, it might be wise to keep the guest list small to avoid overspending. Don’t try to invite everyone you know — instead, stick to just close family members and friends.
2. Send Save-the-Dates Well in Advance
If you want your guests to actually show up to your destination wedding, you’ll want to send out save-the-date cards well in advance to give everyone ample time to make the proper arrangements. After all, your guests may need time to schedule time off from work and save enough money to attend your pending nuptials. In other words, don’t wait too long. Giving your guests as much time as possible to plan is highly recommended, so aim for an eight-month to one-year window. This way, your guests will be prepared and excited to attend your upcoming wedding.
3. Welcome Your Guests with Open Arms
Once all invited guests have arrived at the destination point, welcome them by throwing a small dinner or get-together so that everyone can get better acquainted. Indeed, doing so can also help set the tone for the rest of your wedding. From welcome bags to group karaoke, there are tons of ideas to help make your guests feel happy and welcomed. Think about what makes the most sense based on your location, as well as the activities you and your family and friends most enjoy.
4. Set Up a Wedding Website
Building a wedding website can give your guests all the important information they need to know before the wedding, such as the date, location, dress code, and gift registry. So, set up a free wedding website and share the link with your invited guests to ensure they know all the pertinent details. Updating any details as they change will help keep everyone in the loop and avoid any confusion.
5. Avoid Offending the Country’s Culture
Hosting a destination wedding abroad? Be sure to mind the country’s culture. Don’t include elements of the wedding that could offend the locals. If you want to avoid any potential mishaps or miscommunications between your guests and the locals, read up on the location’s specific customs and traditions and inform your guests. Don’t leave it up to them to do their own research. You could even hand out a helpful pamphlet for your guests that teaches them what to do and what not to do.
Planning the Perfect Destination Wedding
When planning a destination wedding, there’s a lot to think about — and you’ll want to be as careful and prepared as possible since you and your guests will be miles away from home. In other words, it’s important to get all the small details right. Start by writing a list of all the things you need to address for your wedding, including the location, date, venue, food and beverage options, hotel accommodations, travel arrangements, and more, and you’ll be well-prepared before you tie the knot.