Home Base or Destination Wedding?

  • Tuesday, December 22nd, 2015 |
  • Bride

As a couple, deciding if a destination wedding is right for you is the first, and one of the most important decisions you will make in your wedding planning process. Almost every subsequent choice you make will be based on what you decide. So before you start planning every detail, here are some things to consider:

What’s your budget?
One of the biggest myths about destination weddings is that they cost more. This could not be further from the truth. Think about it. If you have a wedding at home, how large will your guest list be? 75, 100, 200+? A destination wedding is what we call “the bouncer” for your guest list. Ashley from the cubicle on the fourth floor is less likely to fly 2,000 miles and stay in a guest house with people she hardly knows to be a part of your wedding. But if it’s at home, the probability of her coming is much higher. The result of doing a destination wedding is your guest list is smaller, drastically reducing the amount you’ll pay for food and beverage, flowers, rentals, favors etc. Your food and beverage can be anywhere from 50-75% of your overall cost. You can still have a small wedding at home, but you may be faced with the issue of “if I invite this person, then I need to invite x, y, and z too.”

In the end, don’t feel pressure to invite people you’re not close to, regardless of what type of wedding you have! One area that can cost more is when it comes to your guests expenses. Guests will spend more to attend your wedding if it’s in another state or country versus in the same town. Which leads me to my next point..

Do your guests have to travel anyway?
Destination weddings make a lot of sense when your guests are coming from many different areas and few live in your hometown. It may be logistically easier if you choose a destination with good travel connections, ample accommodations, and lots to do. Not to mention your wedding will be talked about and reminisced for years to come.


Are there key people in your lives who must be present for the day to be complete?
If a 14-hour plane ride will prevent one of your loved ones from attending, and you cannot picture the event without them, then a compromise might be in order. Either you need to reconsider doing the destination altogether, or find a closer place to hold your festivities. The pro with having a hometown wedding is there is a stronger probability of having a larger guest list and having everyone you know make the event. This can also be looked at as a downside. If you are trying to forgo having 35 people from work attend your intimate nuptials, then a destination wedding can be a real life saver.

Can you handle a little extra of the unexpected?
Weddings, by nature, seem to adhere to Murphy’s Law. An unexpected glitch here (the cake is the wrong color) and another there (the caterer brought goat cheese instead of Roquefort) just goes with the territory. But when you are doing a destination wedding, there may be added things which you have no control over. Inclement weather and travel delays are common obstacles a destination couple can deal with. It’s not a foregone conclusion that this may happen, but it’s something to keep in mind. If you’re laid back and can roll with the punches, maybe you even look at your wedding as a fun adventure vs. an endless list of things to control, then a destination wedding is a good choice for you. The beauty of a destination wedding is that many things are out of your control, so most couples find themselves just going along for the journey. Kind of a nice metaphor for marriage!

When you envision your wedding, do you see crashing waves at your back or your hometown chapel?
The destination you choose, hometown or abroad, may be something you have been dreaming of since childhood. If you’re particularly attached to your church or a special place you get sentimental over, a hometown wedding might be better suited for you.

If you are not especially tied to anything, a destination wedding might be the perfect fit for you. The surf lapping at your toes, an ethnic cultural as your reception venue or a ski-in, ski-out ceremony may be the ideal backdrop for your wedding event.

If you love your hometown pastor but still see those ocean waves behind your altar, bring him along to your destination wedding. Many pastors, ministers or priests are willing to travel along. Just ask them! Think outside of the box. The great news about modern day weddings is that just about anything goes!

Do you want to spend as much time with your closest loved ones as possible? One major perk of doing a destination wedding is that most couples and guests travel to the destination for a few days or even a full week. It offers an opportunity to bond as a group by doing fun outings together and maximizing quality time.

With a hometown wedding you can still draw things out by including everyone in the rehearsal dinner and /or offering a farewell brunch, where they can visit with you one more time before you jet off on your honeymoon. However, destination weddings allow family and friends to experience a much needed vacation, romantic getaway, or reunion. A destination wedding allows you to combine all of these fun experiences into one.

Whether you decide to travel to a destination for your wedding or have the ceremony right in your backyard, be sure to savor the experience and enjoy the process of planning Windermere Destination Love Weddings is ready to share with you locations in the Bahamas, Jamaica, Antigua, St Lucia, Turk and Caicos, Grenada, Barbados, Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Florida, North Carolina and South Carolina.


Interested in having us plan a Destination Wedding or Event for you?

Contact Denise Bonds at 847-309-9478 or info@windermereweddingplanner.com.

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