A destination wedding is fun, romantic and memorable. Every moment of your wedding memories will be colored by the cheerful sunlight of a tropical island or the colorful flair of a distant city. To keep the wedding/vacation running as smoothly as possible, consider these important tips.
1. Using a wedding coordinator or a travel agent who specializes in destination weddings can be a great way to make sure everything goes smoothly and you get to enjoy the wedding yourself. A travel agent can reserve blocks of hotel rooms, help family and friends book tickets, and just in general keep track of all the little details so you can focus on yourself! This is a great way to keep the stress level low.
2. Planning a destination wedding is like planning a regular wedding plus a giant group vacation. The details are staggering. Keep yourself sane by making a huge master list of everything that needs to get done, and then check items off the list one by one. Make lists for everything, from who is RSVP’d to what you need to pack. Great-Aunt Bethanny, check! Diamond engagement ring, check!
3. Don’t overpack. There is nothing less romantic than digging through a giant suitcase at the airport, trying to get it under 50 pounds. If you are staying at a resort, many toiletries will be available to you for free, so you can skip that. Bring simple outfits that can be mixed and matched and worn everywhere from the beach to a restaurant. If you are staying on after the wedding, you can often get your clothes washed instead of bringing your whole wardrobe. Besides your dress and accessories for the wedding itself, skip dressy accessories like heels and diamonds—it’s vacation!
4. You don’t have to do everything yourself. Allow trusted friends or family members to take on certain jobs, like packing, shipping, running the rehearsal dinner or checking up with the guests. On the day of the wedding, appoint one trusted friend to be your personal assistant so you can relax and get ready to look your best.
5. Find out if your cell phone will work at your destination. If it might not, write down every phone number and contact information you might need, so you can use a local phone to contact everyone from the best man to the caterer. Make sure to give everyone a reliable phone number where you can be reached.
6. Take care of yourself. With all the bustle and excitement, it can be easy to forget about basic things like proper meals, exercise and sleep. But staying healthy and hydrated is the best way to deal with stress and help your body cope with any foreign bugs. Don’t forget about your vitamins, yoga mat or anything else your body needs to stay in tip-top shape for the big day.
7. Plan to arrive at your destination a few days before everyone else to make sure everything is running smoothly before the guests show up. That way, you’ll be adjusted to the time zone, comfortable with the hotel, and ready to be the perfect hostess when your guests arrive.
8. If you are from a culture where things run on time, it may take a little adjusting to get used to a place where events progress at a more leisurely pace. Be prepared for everything to run just a little late, and if you have a specific concern, like wanting to make sure the taxi picking up your grandmother is at the terminal when she arrives, share it with the hotel staff and they will help you make sure it happens.
9. Safety is crucial. If you are traveling with jewelry—engagement rings, wedding bands or any other valuable pieces—make sure to get a safe where you can keep them when you aren’t wearing them. Obviously, don’t bring loose diamonds or any other valuables that you don’t absolutely need to have. Remind your guests to be cautious with their belongings as well.
9. Don’t forget to relax! Playing a dual role as bride and hostess can be overwhelming, so make some time for just the two of you to take in a sunset, get a relaxing massage, or just enjoy a glass of wine on your hotel room balcony. Your guests will understand if you need some time alone.
Is your destination wedding going to be at a beach location? Check out our Beach Theme Wedding shop for destination wedding favor ideas that can be easily shipped and fit perfectly with a beach or summer theme. We even have a beautiful romantic Beach Couple Cake Top that has the bride and groom figurines in three different styles!