Planning a Destination Wedding? Don't know where to start? You've come to the right place!
Welcome to our new limited "D.W." Series. Every week, we'll line out and discuss a topic related to planning your destination dream.
Kicking off the series, we thought it would be wise to talk about the foundation, the ground work of planning, "The Budget". Before you start gushing over color schemes, bridal gowns, luxe invitations and that coveted photographer, you must sit down and come to terms with what you'll be able to bring to the table in terms of dollars.
What Is Your Budget?
A D.W. is not a cheap affair. You will have a lot to account for, much more than would normally be included in an at home event. Flights, hotels, vendor and guest accommodations, passport (if overseas), additional travel...the numbers can add up quickly!
Here's a quick start list to help you get a move on. Some of these items you may already have and not need to include, but, others we are almost positive you'll need to take a peek at before writing those checks.
Quick Start List:
- Potential Venue pricing
- Pick 2-3 venues that you'd be perfectly content with saying "I Do" at. Check out their initial pricing, what's the ballpark?
- No brainer here. The more far out your wedding, the cheaper tickets will be. So, gather an idea from airlines.
- Vendor Accommodations
- Are you having a planner remotely coordinate your wedding? Great! It'll be cheaper. Are you excited about the planner you've chosen locally? Great! But, check the contract and see what accommodations you're also paying for. Some planners include travel in their pricing for D.W. while others are willing to pay for their own room and flight. Don't be surprised if you're accommodating!
- Guest Accommodations
- Decide with your partner if you will be accommodating your guests as well or if they will be responsible for their own travel and hotel arrangements. Normally, guests are responsible for their own way of getting to your celebration and where they plan on staying. But, to each their own!
- Passport and other documents
- Are you up to date on all of your documents for going overseas? Don't have one? If not, it'll cost you. Place these must-haves into your initial budget.
A D.W. can range in budget from as low as 15K with the right packages, deals and vendor negotiations to well over 100K or more if you're planning on batting in the luxury bride arena. Ultimately, it's up to you.
HIRE A PLANNER!
Whether local or at the location you're having your wedding at, a coordinator will make your life a breeze. It would be insane to not go this route! Yes, it will add to your budget, but you will thank your lucky stars that you're not sitting at home late at night covered in a pile of invitations, a broken croquembouche and rose petals attempting to figure out where you went wrong!
You're writing the checks, let someone else deal with the hassle!
Speak to your family first.
If having most of your family be at your wedding is a non-negotiable, speak with them to ensure that a D.W. is the right choice. If they can't make it due to financials or other reasons, you don't want to be stuck at an event depressed.
Remember it's the memories that count the most, not always where you have them.
Plan Early, Budget Early
A D.W. is no simple feat! Once you're engaged, start planning and budgeting as early as possible! It'll save you some serious stress and confusion along the way if you get it done ASAP so, you and your partner can relax.
D.W. - The Venue