Hot Pink Travel
If you’re reading this, you’re either engaged (Yay, super exciting) or dreaming of your wedding day. As a travel agent, I work with brides and grooms to help them select the best venue for their destination wedding. The resorts can vary greatly and knowing some differences in advance can help you narrow down the ideal location with ease. I’ll use my recent Riviera Maya site visits of the El Dorado Miroma, Ed Dorado Seaside Suites, Hard Rock and Unico 20º87º.
A few tips, if you’re thinking of a destination wedding, the beauty is that there are many packages to choose from, the smallest of which is usually complimentary with a certain number of paying rooms. There are typically complimentary rooms nights that the bride and groom can use for themselves, family and friends, or as a credit on the overall wedding cost. These can keep your wedding expense much lower than a traditional wedding. Also, because there is the cost of travel, attendees are usually those who really want to be there, so the numbers will likely be smaller than with a traditional wedding. That said, destination weddings could get as large as 200+, and many properties offer cash for your bash that increases with the size and scope of your wedding.
Some key considerations to help you narrow down the when and where for your destination wedding:
Will children be invited? This a BIG question as some people won’t want to travel without their children, but others will enjoy the vibe that an adults-only property can bring. Some, hotels offer two spaces, one that is adults only and one that is for families, giving you the best of both worlds. But knowing whether or not you want children present helps your travel agent focus on the right property for you.
This pertains both to your wedding costs as well as the overall cost of travel for your guests. Knowing what the family members who you really want at your wedding can afford is something to consider. There is a property for every price range, but the important thing is to find the best property for you first, and then your travel agent can negotiate the best rates and perks.
Number of people?
Most properties can handle weddings as small as 2 people to more than 200. It really just depends on what you are wanting. That said, there are fewer properties that can handle really large groups, so knowing size in advance is key.
Type of bride
A destination wedding can be difficult for brides who have a difficult time visualizing space or who want to be involved and control everything. However, a few hotels have developed ways to help even the pickiest of brides be more hands on, even from far away. One property will even let you visit for a weekend and set everything up for you so that you can see exactly how the smallest details will look on your special day.
With some properties, working long distance, and sometimes with a bit of a language barrier, can be trying. I work as your advocate with the property, making sure your big day is exactly what you dreamed. I also handle logistics such as flights, transfers and group dining taking those details off of your plate so that you can focus on the wedding details.
Time of year
Weather is always a concern with a destination wedding, so being aware of hurricane season and how that impacts your choice of destinations is key. If you do want to get married during hurricane season, a cruise ship wedding may be a great option.
Catholic wedding ceremony
If your heart is set on a church wedding, or specifically a catholic ceremony, there are definitely properties that can make this dream come true. The El Dorado Miroma and the Hard Rock Riveria Maya both have churches just for this purpose.
Is a cruise ship wedding for you?
The beauty of a cruise ship wedding is that it really does give you many, many options for venues, budgets and styles. For instance, you can get married before the ship departs in a US port, simplifying marriage licenses, you can get married on the ship during a day at sea, or you can get married off ship at many of the ports of call. Check out my pinterest board for fun cruise ship wedding ideas.
The biggest recommendation I can make is to have an advocate, such as your travel agent, who has relationships with the properties and vendors and who can work on your behalf to make sure everything goes off without a hitch. Agents can secure group flights and hotels, often with just a deposit and final payment a few months before the fun event, which gives your travelers time to plan and save. I also like to be onsite to make sure everything goes off without a hitch.
Also, check out my 10 Tips to have a Destination wedding.
If you’re thinking about a destination wedding, let’s talk. Email firstname.lastname@example.org, or text 916.692.9550.
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