My Euro-summer brideys are gearing up for what is going to be some spectacular wedding celebrations, and I thought you may be dreaming of some sunshine, some travel and maybe, just maybe, some adventure too. Enter Wanderlust Wedding Syndrome defn. a very strong and irresistible impulse or desire to travel and wed in all parts of the world.
The biggest buzzword in wedded bliss these days is most certainly the Destination Wedding. Whether it be 2 hours from your doorstep, or over the seas and far away, many are being lured by the bright lights of simply ‘somewhere else’. For this article however, I’m going to focus on the weddings that involve a little plane travel over various waterways.
Otherwise known as The Overseas Destination Wedding Extravaganza!
This trend was often reserved for couples who had different nationalities or grew up in different countries. It was also quite commonplace to hold two events – one in each country of origin in order to cater for both families. However now with the world at large being so accessible, and let’s face it, we love to travel, the destination wedding is really becoming somewhat the norm.
Not sure which way you are inclined? Here are some pro’s and cons for you to ponder…
The Good | there are some mega pro’s to a destination wedding, apart form the obvious exotic lure. For those with large families and/or a responsibility to invite hundreds of guests, this can be a way to create a more intimate occasion as the cost involved can make it less accessible for guests, and a simple ‘it’s a small family affair abroad’ makes for enough of a reason to stop expectant guests feeling offended. The value for money can also be fantastic, obviously in Asia, however also somewhat surprisingly in European destinations . And of course, if your backdrop is the Amalfi Coast or a French Vineyard, the cost of décor can be minimal. Also, with your guests normally in one place for at least a few days, you can make it more than just one day – with drinks the night before the wedding, boat trips, picnics, a brunch – it’s a nice way to really spend quality time with your guests.
The Bad | it may be YOUR dream to have your ceremony abroad, however some people very close to you may not be able to make it – from newborns, to cost, not getting the time off work or even elderly family members not being in the best health to do the flight. You need a tough skin for this one and you really need to think about the people who CAN make it, as opposed to those who cannot. You also must be prepared to put in a little extra effort if you are not living in the country that your wedding will take place. You can’t just rock up and chat to the suppliers when you need on the spot answers, you have to deal with time zones that may not suit your current situation and it can cause some unnecessary headaches with language barriers and expectations not being met.
The Ugly | there are horror stories. Many. From a beautiful beach wedding reception in Thailand that got washed away by the high tide mid entrée, to a bout of escargot poisoning. Not any of my brideys of course! However just remember you are dealing with different cultures and different ideas of what the perfect wedding setting and style is. ‘Yes’ can often mean ‘no’ so be wary.
A few extra things to keep in mind
- Give your guests plenty of warning. Ideally a year, and an absolute minimum of 6 months
- If the majority of guests are travelling from overseas anyway, opt for a mid week celebration. This allows for annex events such as pre wedding drinks and a recovery brunch, and the best bargaining power for your venues and suppliers.
- And remember, with the invitations, there is a lot more information you must give your guests than a wedding in your local area. From venue suggestions to transport options, you will need a very comprehensive booklet style invitation and/or a wedding website.
One final bit of advice before this turns in to an essay… when going global, if you are not on ground to hand hold the process, roll with what their local suppliers have done a million times, and somewhat adopt the ‘when in Rome’ attitude when deciding on the style of food and flowers. The personal touches are better to come from you than trying to recreate the wheel with your overseas suppliers, such as your talking points and as an example DIY your custom printed menus and place cards and bring them over yourself.