1) Go for the meaning. Finding a location that is important to you both can add great meaning to the backdrop of your day. Once you’ve made a decision or at least narrowed the choices, do not hesitate to get vendors such as your photographers involved. Issues such as a setting sun, different hours for that all important “golden Hour” and a workable timeline will go a long way to ensuring you are happy with your location.
2) Plan Early. Starting the planning process as far out as you can and are comfortable with can be extremely helpful with your budget and sanity! There remains a pervasive attitude that destination weddings are always more expensive than a local wedding…in many cases this simply is not true….for example it is common for a destination wedding to have a much more streamlined guest list that reduces cost and narrows the focus to very close family and friends only. While preparing that list may be a challenge, it may also prove to expand your budget dollars in other areas for vendors, guest needs, special services or just plain old pocket money!
3) Working with the background location , you just might encounter a more relaxed and acceptable wardrobe for you and your guest. While it may seem trivial, if your a bride who can’t wait to kick off your shoes, having a ceremony in, for example, barefoot, means a far more relaxed couple, wedding party and guest…relaxed equals fun…fun equals memories that will last a lifetime!
4) Work the logistics. You will want to make sure that not only are you getting the best deal for your money, but that hotels , venues and ceremony sites are not spread too far apart and that ample, affordable transportation is readily available. Also ensure you have repeatedly reviewed the timeline with your vendors, ensuring you are allowing enough time for everything that you want and have planned.
5) Vendors. Between the local vendors available at your destination and what is available to you near your home base, you may have decisions to make. Look closely at the work of the destination vendors, if you have any reservations about getting what you want, do not be afraid to see if the vendors you are comfortable with will travel. You may be surprised at the affordability versus the peace of mind of getting just what you want! Lastly…once you have spent the money, planned your rear end off and are finally at your big day…take a deep breath, relax and trust your preparation, your vendors and enjoy!