For many couples, swapping overcast skies and unpredictable weather for the sunny shores of a foreign destination has proven tempting to marry abroad with rising numbers of marriages taking place in exotic destinations.
If you’re contemplating/planning your wedding away, don’t forget to factor in these destination wedmin tasks you may not have thought about…
Factor in the budget of your guests
Getting married in another country can save you up to $13,500 – that said, it’s often your guests who will shoulder the financial burden.
Consider the cost of the flights and the availability of accommodation – try not to leave your guests with a four or five-star hotel as their only option. Make sure you pick an area with a variety of hotel or apartment options, allowing your guests to pick an option they can afford.
The distance travelled is also an important factor. If you’re hoping to invite older relatives, a long flight may be difficult and make them less likely to attend. It may be worth discussing potential destinations with important attendees before booking anything, to avoid disappointment over the guest list when the big day comes.
The most popular destinations
The most popular wedding destinations change every year, with cosmopolitan options like New York, Thailand, and New Zealand growing significantly in recent months.
Your wedding should be somewhere that you’re passionate about. But it’s worth remembering that the hotels and venues in classic wedding destinations, like Cyprus and Mexico, often have better equipped facilities to host your ceremony.
France may be traditionally a romantic destination for couples, but (unless you’re French) it can be difficult due to the many legal documents and regulations you need to adhere to. Couples must be present in France for 40 continuous days before the big day, and you’ll need to provide…
- Copies of your birth certificates (issued less than 6 months ago)
- Proof of domicile,
- Certificates of your single status,
- French translations of all documents
As we’ve seen this summer, exotic locations can be at risk of extreme weather conditions! Consider the climate and time of year before booking, and be sure to research rainy and hurricane seasons.
Remember a Certificate of No Impediment
A Certificate of No Impediment (CNI) is a legal document that non-commonwealth countries require to prove you and your partner are able to marry. If your CNI is issued in Scotland it will only last for 3 months after it’s been sent out.
Flight and hotel upgrades
There’s good news and bad news when it comes to upgrades for nearly-weds. Flight upgrades are rare, so if you’re looking for a luxurious flight, your only option is to pay for one.
Hotels on the other hand are more accommodating. Thailand and other destinations on the Indian Ocean are more likely to upgrade your room as standard, but check availability before your trip.
Consider a wedding planner
It may be tempting to try and organise your entire wedding with no outside help, which is often the right way to go for weddings based on home soil. There’s often more paperwork and red tape to contend with when getting married in another country. For example, certain destinations require couples to arrive a specific amount of days before the ceremony can take place. This can range from two days to more than two weeks.
There’s also added paperwork. A Certificate of No Impediment must be provided and depending on the destination you choose; these documents may need to be translated before they are accepted.
Using a destination wedding planner will alleviate some of these headaches, and will ensure your day goes off without a hitch.
Combine your wedding with your honeymoon
A destination wedding makes it easier to go straight from the ceremony to your honeymoon, without any waiting time in-between!
Many couples opt to go travelling immediately after a wedding instead of a traditional honeymoon, visiting multiple locations on a single trip, by either rail or plane. Combining your honeymoon with the ceremony can be a handy way of saving money on flights.
Book early for the best deal
The early bird certainly catches the worm when it comes to booking a wedding abroad. Taking care of venues, hotels and flights a long way before your planned date can save huge amounts, as hotels often increase rates according to demand.
Perform extra research for same-sex marriages
Same-sex marriages require even more research, as not all countries will facilitate them. There are still many amazing options to choose from, with Argentina, Belgium, Finland, France, New Zealand, America, and many more.
Book through a reputable travel company
Booking through a reputable travel company often means you’re protected from unpredictable incidents. Alternative flights and, in some cases, accommodation can be found. Booking flights individually can leave you open to disappointment if the worst does happen.
Get Wedding Insurance
There’s always an element of risk when it comes to planning a wedding. Unforeseen circumstances can stop the ceremony going ahead, causing distress for the couple, not to mention thousands in lost deposits. Wedding insurance protects you from any eventuality and will offer peace of mind if your destination is known for occasionally tumultuous weather conditions.