Destination weddings can be a fabulous and memorable experience for the couple and their guests, but there are some downsides too. Here are the pros and cons of a destination wedding to help you decide if it’s the right path to choose.
Five pros of a destination wedding
Destination weddings are usually more relaxed and informal than a wedding at home. If you want you can do away with rituals such as the processional, the speeches, the first dance, the cake cutting, and the bouquet toss and simply focus on having a good time with your groom and guests.
A destination wedding can be totally different from the standard weddings your friends may have had back home. You can include local traditions, decorations, and food into your ceremony and reception as well as having unique scenery as a stunning wedding backdrop.
You can have a smaller guest list and won’t feel pressured to invite work colleagues, distant relations, or people you barely know just because they invited you to their wedding. Enjoy a more intimate celebration, with the two of you, and either just two witnesses, or a handful of very close friends and relatives.
A destination wedding often works out cheaper than a home based wedding due to the reduction in expensive wedding rituals and items and the smaller guest list. With many destination wedding resorts offering the wedding ceremony for free, you might end up only spending a bit extra than the cost of an average honeymoon.
Planning the wedding will be less of a hassle with a destination wedding assuming you choose an all-inclusive package. You won’t have to decide between numerous companies, and negotiate on everything from the flowers to the cake as all this will be handled for you by the wedding co-ordinator at your destination.
Five cons of a destination wedding
Unless you travel to see the venue in beforehand, and check out examples of the suppliers’ work at the time, you won’t know what to expect until you get there. With an all-inclusive wedding package, you won’t have a lot of say in the suppliers that are used, and you might find the table settings, the cuisine, or the photography aren’t exactly to your usual taste.
You may feel that you want to do away with all the traditional wedding rituals, but at some point you may start to feel like you have missed out. Once you are married, other wives will ask you about your big day, and if you have never thrown a bouquet, walked down the aisle, or listened to your father giving a heart-warming speech, you might feel a bit sad.
There can be a lot of bureaucracy associated with a destination wedding, depending on the country you choose. You will need to check the validity of your marriage certificate and find out whether it has to be stamped by the British Embassy in the country where you are having the wedding. You will need visas, passports, birth certificates, and the like, and you might need to prove that you aren’t already married. You may also have to stay in the country for a certain number of days before the ceremony.
A destination wedding often serves as a honeymoon as well, but this does mean that you are sharing your honeymoon with any guests you have with you. No matter how much you love your wedding guests, the honeymoon should be just for the two of you, and if they expect to see you every day you may start to feel a little uncomfortable.
While it’s easy to say that a destination wedding gives you an excellent excuse to limit your guest list, you may find that some of the people you really do want to be there cannot join you. Work and family obligations might mean they can’t afford to take a couple of days away, when a single Saturday for a wedding at home would have guaranteed their attendance.
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