Destination Wedding Tips – How Much Do I Love Them
By Holly Tomlinson
Shall we Destination Wedding? Long gone are the days when couples were practically forced to have extravagant ceremonies, as couples are ready to shirk tradition and head off to a dream destination to say their “I dos”. There’s many reasons behind this switch: couples can focus more on each other and their close loved ones as destination weddings are much smaller, they can in theory save money (depending on the destination) as guests will likely be paying for themselves, and it makes for some killer wedding day photos. If you’re planning on attending a romantic destination wedding this year, make sure you keep these tips in your arsenal to ensure you have the time of your life whilst celebrating the happy couple.
Give Yourself Plenty of Time
The moment you receive your invitation, sit down with your significant other and decide whether the trip is a reality for you. If you can’t afford it, let the bride and groom-to-be know—there’s no arguing with money woes, and they likely are expecting some of their invited guests to be unable to attend. To give you a general idea, the average cost for a guest to attend an out of country destination wedding can be upwards of $1,600. If you do think you can swing it, then get to planning right away. RSVP as soon as possible, and then start doing your research on flights and where you might be able to stay. Many couples recommend certain hotels to destination wedding guests, but there’s no rule that says you can’t elect to find a cheaper place while you’re there. You can usually book early bird flights about six months before. Use cheap alert fares on a website like Airfarewatchdog.com to make sure you’re notified of any awesome deals on flights to the specific destination. Couples will also often work with a specified travel agent to handle bookings, and this might find you a deal so be sure to ask before you start booking.
If you do decide to drop Thousands on a Destination Wedding Trip, feel free to get an affordable wedding gift for them in return. Amazon has the Essential Honeymoon Kit:
Do Your Research
Ask the bride and groom about the events they plan on hosting in the destination. Will you need formal wear, or is the whole vacation bound to be a casual shindig? You’ll also want to do your own research on the locale to make sure you’re prepared for anything and everything. Are you traveling there during rainy season? You’ll want to pack waterproof clothing. Are you staying in a tropical mecca? Sunscreen and bathing suits galore. Be sure to pack a carry-on with at least one day’s clothing essentials in case anything should happen to your luggage on the flight over. If you’re in the wedding party or will need a classy dress or suit and tie for the occasion, make sure you pack one in your carry-on. The last thing you need is to have to hunt down formal wear once you arrive.
Gifts on the Go
If the destination is in the United States, consider sending your gift ahead of time so you don’t have to worry about taking it with you in your luggage. If the couple has asked their guests to forgo gifts because of the cost of traveling to the wedding (as many destination wedding couples will do), you can still add a little something extra for him and her on their special day. Order a delivery of sweet treats to their honeymoon suite for the wedding night, or have the hotel set up a beautiful bouquet before they check in. They’ll definitely appreciate your above-and-beyond efforts and you’ll be an integral part of their memories of a beautiful day. You can also wait until after the wedding is over and send a gift straight to their home if you have a tangible item in mind, or deliver it yourself after everyone has come back from the journey and had the chance to resettle.
If you’ve been invited to attend or take part in a destination wedding, you should definitely feel honored—invites to these soirees are usually reserved for those the bride and groom-to-be hold most dear. If you’ve decided to attend, keep these travel tips in mind to make sure you have a wonderful and budget-friendly trip.