Destination Wedding Checklist: Have a Stress-Free Destination Wedding
A Destination Wedding is not just another vacation or trip. It is going to be the trip of a lifetime, and the beginning of your new life together. Destination weddings are not always easy to plan, follow these simple steps to have a stress free and smooth destination wedding in paradise.
1. Have a plan to transport your wedding dress:
Never try to ship your dress to your destination ahead of you, or check it with your luggage on the plane. Always put your dress in a garment bag, and ask one of the flight attendants if they would be willing to hang it in the airplane closet or in First Class. Most airlines are more than happy to accommodate you if they have the space. A lot of destination wedding dresses are not bulky or heavy, so you may be able to fold your dress in half and rest it in the storage above the seats as well.
Always bring extra cash, copies of your passport, and any legal documents you are planning to bring with you. You should also pack extra prescription medication, an extra camera, memory sticks, chargers, and other items that if suddenly lost, would make life very difficult for you. Always keep these items with you at all times, do not put these in your checked luggage, as luggage can get lost or delayed.
3. Do Your Homework:
Every country has different laws and marriage requirements. Make sure to do your research on your destination to make sure that you will be able to easily meet all the requirements. For example, to get married in Jamaica, you need to be there 48hrs prior to the wedding. If you don’t know your facts, you could find yourself spending a lot of money, and still not able to get married. You can find a lot of this information on embassy and state websites for the destination you are interested in, or you can call a destination wedding designer, if you want to save some time. Also, make sure that you have all of the correct paperwork filled out that you will need to bring with you: Blood Test, birth certificate, etc. If you are doing a second marriage, you will need proof that you are free of your first marriage.
4. Buy Travel Insurance:
Anything can happen in life, and though most of the time 99% of all destination wedding travel goes without a hitch, there are times when you may need to utilize your travel insurance. I had one couple who went on their honeymoon to St. Lucia, and then toward the end of their trip, a hurricane hit. Their travel insurance reimbursed them for all the extra transport and lost vacation the couple had to deal with. If you are traveling during Hurricane season, I highly recommend that you purchase a full comprehensive plan that covers “Act of God” scenarios, including bad weather. There are different levels of coverage and plans. Consult an expert to ensure you have what is best for you.
5. Double Check the Customs and Immigration laws for your destination.
The last thing you want is to bring some special decorations or flowers that you have spent a lot of money on, only to have them confiscated at the airport. Double check with the embassy or tourism sites for your destination.
5. Use a Destination Wedding Designer:
Now that you have your checklist, are you ready to start planning? Well, maybe not quite! Planning a destination wedding can best be described as making a beautiful wedding cake with different layers and tiers - you have to bake and decorate a portion at a time until the masterpiece is created! So, now that you are on this journey of "creating your masterpiece", are you confident that your "cake" will hold up in the heat or do you think having a professional in your corner would be wise? Most destination wedding designers do charge a fee, but it is nominal compared to the peace of mind you will have to know that all the details are being handled for you and your guests . Plus, if there are any problems, you and your guests will have someone to turn to for help. I just had a young bride traveling last week, and while she was there, her lung just randomly collapsed! She had to be medically evacuated from the island and brought home, but couldn’t fly in a commercial aircraft. Well it took some time, phone calls and emails, but I was able to help her get evacuated back to the U.S and then back home to Michigan from Florida. They were very happy they had me in their corner to help ease the stress of the situation. (And yes, they had travel insurance!)
Have a Happy Wedding Day Away!
Schedule a Free Thirty Minute Consultation with one of our destination wedding designers today! 877-686-0387
Tami Santini is owner and lead honeymoon and destination wedding designer for Paradise Getaways. Tami helps busy brides all over the United States design the perfect honeymoon and destination wedding of their dreams.