Destination weddings are becoming increasingly popular, both with brides looking to get married in a beautiful location and couples wanting their dream wedding on a budget.
To help you consider if getting married abroad is right for you, we’ve taken a look at some of the pros and cons of getting hitched far from home.
- Destination weddings usually mean smaller guest lists – which can dramatically reduce the cost of the ceremony and reception. Couples getting hitched abroad tend to trim the guest list to close family and friends, who they know will spend the money on flights and other wedding expenses, meaning catering numbers are much smaller. Hotels and resorts often offer wedding packages that cover all bases with minumum stress – the ceremony, food, wine, decoration and flowers can be taken care of for one fixed sum.
- Weather. While arranging a beach wedding in the UK is a serious weather gamble, going overseas can offer your dream ceremony on tropical shores. What’s more, you and your guests can enjoy a few days in the sunshine before the big day – you may even have a healthy, tanned glow to go with your wedding gown.
- Memories. While all wedding days are memorable, a beautiful wedding in a sun-kissed destination makes an entire country sentimental for the newlyweds, not just a venue. Smaller numbers mean you can spend more time with your guests, and enjoy a holiday as well as your wedding day – and it’s the perfect place for your first anniversary celebrations too.
- Cost. Yes, cost can be considered a ‘con’ too. But for your guests. By getting married abroad, you are expecting your guests to shell out for flights and accommodation to wherever you’re getting wed – on top of the usual wedding costs of outfits, presents and drinks. You may be able to subsidise the costs in part (some resorts give discounts to group bookings for wedding), but you need to come to terms with the fact that for some of your loved ones, it might just be too much to spend.
- Guest list. The cost of travel and your chosen venue abroad may limit your guest numbers, which could lead to some tough decisions when it comes to invites. Elderly family members may not be up to long-haul travel, depending on where you decide to get hitched, and friends and family with children may find the cost of the trip prohibitive. A compromise can be to hold a second, low-key reception upon your return – but a lot of your ideal guest list may not be able to witness you getting married.
- Organisation. Organising a wedding in your home town can be stressful enough – now imagine having to travel abroad or liaise with foreign suppliers to shape your big day. Aside from potential language barriers, you are either going to have to put your faith in a wedding planner in your chosen destination, or fly out once or twice to get things in order. It’s an extra cost (and hassle) you need to consider.
We hope this guide can help you decide if a destination wedding is for you – and remember, the most important thing is that you end the day as husband and wife.