i'm having a destination wedding too! My fiancee is from the UK and we are both living in Nigeria right now. So we've decided to have the wedding in the west highlands of Scotland. That way our friends from Africa, US and rest of Europe can come for a small vacation for our wedding.
We are doing it in a b&b which happened to be able to accommodate and provide our wedding reception up to 50 guests. It's basically an exclusive use for the night. Since the venue is not in a major city, the total package was very reasonable. The plus side is that the owner of the b&b was a former wedding/event planner so she's giving us advice on the planning process.
Often times I think people get fixated on many details and they can all rack up the cost and time. We choose to forgo invitations - but only printing programs & menu. Spend money on DJ, food and venue.
Yay for this topic. I myself am having a destination wedding. While we live in Texas, we have family in California, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin. We're getting married in Colorado. Basically everyone except the groom's parents have to travel.
There are numerous DIY Wedding websites out there, and many of them will tell you right off the bat that DIY is often NOT less expensive than paying someone to do it. I appreciated reading that when I first started doing research.
We are having an small wedding - we've invited 60 of our family and our closest friends. Generally speaking, when you have a destination wedding, you can anticipate at least 30-40% of people not being able to make it, which helps keeps your total cost down.
Things we've done to reduce our cost:
Our ceremony site is a walk up, first come first serve location with Pike's Peak in the background. I'm not worried about random people being up there, but if they are, they can watch the show!
Our reception location is ideal. For $250, we have rented out a camp lodge complete with a fully stocked kitchen that we plan to use. The lodge has beautiful carved picnic benches that will add to our rustic and outdoorsy theme. There's a fireplace to keep us warm (we'll be at an elevation over 8,000 feet, so it'll definitely feel cold to us!), and a fire ring out front where we plan on making s'mores later in the evening.
We also made our own save the date announcements. We made magnets with all the info on them, and with some aspen trees indicating and tying in the outdoorsy theme we'll be having.
We're also making our own centerpieces - the groom's parents have tons of aspen on their property, so we're going to making candle holders out of varying chunks of aspen trunks.
When it comes to booking flights, I can't praise Southwest Airlines praises enough! I'm fortunate enough to live relatively near a major hub for them, and out destination is near a major hub - our flights will be less than $550 round trip for both of us, 2 pieces of luggage each, all taxes included.
I'd love to hear how everything goes for your weddings, and what you decide to do yourselves.
Good luck on your wedding planning!
11/22/11 3:07 P
I would consider doing some research in your hometown of what it would cost to just have a smaller wedding. I think people often think DIY or destination weddings will be cheaper, but end up not being so, since you'll pay for flights, hotel, maybe you have to go down there before to get things setup, etc. when really you could just have a small wedding at home for the same cost or less.
I guess that depends on what you mean by "Destination Wedding." I live in Florida just a few miles from the beach, but all of our two families live in Ohio. We've decided that to keep the guest list and costs down, we will have the wedding here on the beach that we love so much. That means everyone but us has to travel, but they all see it as a vacation because of where we live.
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11/9/11 1:30 P
Anyone else out there having or had a destination wedding? We decided to get married in Mexico to try and keep costs down (and also the number of guests - this way we get a small, intimate wedding).