How to Plan a Beach Wedding Abroad – Part One

Before you rush into making a booking for your beach wedding in paradise, there are some practical things you should consider first. The backdrop of some exotic and far-off beach will undoubtedly provide a romantic setting but will it turn out to be a romantic occasion? The two are not the same and, with a very level head, you should think the potential snags through first. Here are six to get you started.

Choose the right Tour Operator

Opt for a professional tour operator with a proven track record in overseas wedding. This is your big day and logistically it can be tricky to organise when it is taking place thousands of miles away from home. By choosing a professional organisation you will remove a great deal of stress from your shoulders as they have people in resort to make all the necessary arrangements for you.

Having guests who are working people

Unless it’s going to be ‘just the two of us’, your guests will have to make the journey under their own volition. Assuming you’ve picked some exotic location, this will be both expensive and time-consuming, what with the journey and also the days spent in a hotel either side of the ceremony. For working people, the time clocked up attending your wedding counts as days off their annual leave allowance. It is unfair to expect your family and friends to forfeit their own holidays just to make yours special.

Guests for whom travelling presents a problem

Assuming you have chosen a period outside of school term-time (which is essential), it is still a far from enjoyable experience for parents to make a long and, possibly, complex journey with young children. Not only that, if the resort is a ‘couples only’ location (as many are), children will not be welcome (they may even be barred). A long flight is also no easy matter for any disabled guests even though airlines are generally more amenable these days.

Your timing will not suit everyone

No matter how hard you try and how many of your guests you canvass first, your chosen date will not be convenient for everyone. Some of your friends will not be able to get away from work and others may have domestic commitments. Picking a time which effectively excludes some people risks alienating friends.

Take what you’re given

If you were organising the wedding and reception in your home town, you could ‘audition’ the various establishments, check out menus, listen to bands playing, see the work of a few photographers and so on. You may, if you’re canny, even start negotiating package deals, especially if you employ a wedding co-ordinator. With your exotic location, all these facilities will be provided by the organiser and, even if the prices are laid out in advance (with no possibility of whittling them down), there will be no way to check out the quality or find an alternative.

Get it right first time

Again, with a local wedding, you would do dry-runs but, if the wedding is 5,000 miles away, you will only discover for certain what’s going to happen on the day itself. Since the beach wedding will represent a huge investment in both organisational effort and cash, it is only natural to build it into a life-defining moment. In reality, you will be in the hands of strangers who may or may not perform on the day, thus creating a real risk that a spectacular event could become an anti-climax. Without the opportunity for rehearsal, that failure to perform may even be a result of your own actions or ignorance.

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