Planning any wedding is one huge logistical feat, and if you’ve decided that your dream wedding has to be one that’s held overseas, you should be aware it comes with its own set of challenges.
Here’s some advice from real brides that’ll be good to know before you embark creating your dream destination wedding:
1. View the venues in person
Viewing PDF brochures are fine when you’re creating a list of venues to consider, but when you’ve shortlisted to just 2 to 3 venues, it is highly recommended to view the places in person.
Going for a site visit means you’re able to see the actual flow, arrangement and ambience of the place – this is pretty essential in regards to planning out your décor and program flow.
Don’t be shy in taking pictures and asking plenty of questions.
The information you get during your site recce will be more accurate and immediate as things might get lost in translation over a series of emails.
“We found that the venues were not really responsive. It took them on average 3 to 5 days to reply to our emails and that slowed our planning quite a bit.” – Lydia, 26.
“While we didn’t find the staff particularly friendly over email, we found that most of them were more accommodating and nicer in person.
It definitely helped in creating better understanding on how we’d like our wedding to be and what they could do for us.” – Sarah, 31.
2. Visual representation!
If you aren’t able to meet your wedding vendors in person, make sure that you are as detailed as possible with use of wonderful modern technology – be it Pinterest, Instagram or if possible, communicate via video chat for every major decision and update.
What you had in mind might not be effectively translated in words.
“I had requested for a pastel theme for my table centrepieces but somehow my florist ended up using bright coral pink peonies which veered off from my initial vision.
On hindsight, I should have specified my requests using images instead of assuming my description was enough.” – Lay Ting, 27.
3. Chill out on the DIY & find local vendors
We get it – bespoke weddings are in and personalised touches makes the difference between one wedding from the next.
However, before you excitedly cart out your massive Taobao wedding décor haul, you should figure out how much stuff you’re humanely able to fly over.
You’ll also need to accord for the extra luggage weight, packing and unpacking, arranging your décor and hauling it all back.
We’d advise keeping this aspect to the pros.
“I had initially wanted to do a DIY styled wedding but when I saw the works of Bali wedding planners, I found it a better option, both financially and logistically, to hire a professional for the job.” – Yvette, 28.
“We were going to be on a 2 week road-trip before our actual ceremony. Knowing that, I brought a fake bouquet instead as fresh blooms won’t last the journey.
I did make a mistake of choosing a bulky ballgown as my wedding dress. It took up so much trunk space and it was difficult to lug it around.” – Candice, 30.
“Hiring an Indonesian photographer and videography saved me up to 40% of the cost of engaging a Singaporean photographer. I ended up being able to top up my guests accommodation with the money I saved.” – Linette, 25.
4. Be early
Imagine the horror of having flight delays for most of your wedding guests – which was what happened to our bride Rachel.
“We’ve had guests flying in on this particular airline over 3 different flights, and each one of them was delayed. Luckily, they were all flying in 2 days before the actual wedding day.”
Same goes for the bride and groom! Getting there at least 2 days before will give you time to sort out any last-minute issues and for some couple R&R.
5. Weather it out
Find out what the weather will be like at the time of your wedding at the overseas destination. If you’re planning an outdoor ceremony or celebration, you have to ensure that you and your guests are dressed to suit the weather
Always have a standby indoor option nearby your outdoor wedding venue. Some places have unpredictable weather.