10 Things to Remember While Planning an International Destination Wedding
An international destination wedding may sound hella fun but planning one certainly isn’t easy. Especially when you’re on the edge of unleashing your inner bridezilla at the drop of a hat. As if wedding planning isn’t a monumental task in itself, planning one from thousands of miles away makes it even more difficult! So to help you out with your destination wedding planning and prepping, we’ve put together a list of 10 important things that you must consider while you organise your big day. Check ‘em out and save yourself some stress!
THE EXCHANGE RATE
A normal wedding budget itself creates a black hole in our bank accounts. So an international destination wedding would obviously cost a lot more. Make sure you know what the exchange rate is and how much the total cost would come up to! You don’t want to be spending your post-wedding life being broke.
Also, take note of the fact that some places are just generally more expensive so choose the location wisely. Instead of choosing a location where the currency value is greater than the Indian rupee, pick places that are just as beautiful but have a lower currency value.
For example: Bali and Sri Lanka are some great options to have your destination wedding at as:
1 Indian Rupee = 197.34 Indonesian Rupiah
1 Indian Rupee = 2.23 Sri Lankan Rupees
TIME IT RIGHT
Usually, good weather conditions or high season in any popular destination comes with higher rates, lesser venue availability and more crowd. While the off-season would mean fewer crowds and relatively cheap bookings, the weather tends to suck! So we suggest you book the season right in between, to avail decent weather conditions as well as prices that aren’t sky-rocketing.
PLAN WAYYY AHEAD
Planning a wedding is usually done months before the big day. But if you have an international destination wedding in mind, you better buck up! A few months isn’t going to cut it. Send invites much earlier as your guests will need to RSVP in time for you to make the necessary bookings! Start planning, scouting venues, booking etc. at least 12 months ahead of the wedding date.
VISIT THE VENUE
Yes, this may add to your enormous expenditure but try to get a good look at the venue and its capacity / comfort level before going ahead and booking it because though you may have an idea of how it looks, pictures can be deceiving. Make a trip to the location during which you could also check out local vendors in person.
Make sure that the journey to the venue isn’t much of a hassle as all guests will not be comfortable with the travel. Take into account details like how far from the airport the location is and how easy it is to get there. Choose a location that’s relatively convenient to reach as it will save a lot of time and energy for you as well as your guests.
GET A LOCAL PLANNER
While planning an international destination wedding, you obviously wouldn’t know the area, the language or any of the local setting. So hire a wedding planner who is from that area and get help while booking the venue/vendors as well as get to know other important details regarding the destination. They will also help co-ordinate among all the various events and people involved.
While hiring local vendors, you need to keep in mind that they may not be able to deliver your specific demands. Example: A chef in Thailand would not know how to whip up the softest and juiciest Gulab Jamoon, would he? So we suggest that you stick to what they are good at and have them deliver just that to you in the best way possible.
When it comes to photographers / make-up artists / etc, the best thing to do is to hire a team from home, though you will have to pay for their stay and travel.
LOCAL MARRIAGE LICENSE / REQUIREMENTS
Different locations have different procedures for obtaining a marriage license. Before deciding the venue for your nuptials, make sure you understand the materials and procedures needed to acquire your marriage license.
Think about your location and what suits the weather and other similar factors while picking out your outfit as well as others’ outfits. Example: If the weather is going to be hot, you may want to replace fabrics like velvet or satin with airier ones. And if it’s an outdoor / beach wedding you would want to avoid wearing heels as they’ll just keep getting stuck in the sand.
TAKE CARE OF YOUR GUESTS
In addition to arranging group rates for flights and rooms, list information for getting to and from the nearest airport to your wedding venue, make sure everyone is aware about the breakfast/lunch/dinner plan, deliver welcome bags to their rooms, full of essentials for the trip, like suntan lotion, water and bug spray and other similar things!
Cover image credits: Joseph Radikh