Should I Stay or Should I Go?
Pros and Cons of Destination Weddings

Should I Stay or Should I Go - Ultimate Academy® - Blog

Many of us, as kids, dreamt of our wedding day. Some pictured grand local events while others fantasized about destination weddings in exotic places. We might have imagined Cinderella-like dresses or fun cake toppers. As we grow up, our styles change, and our dream wedding might shift, especially when we find the person we want to marry.

Deciding on a wedding type, be it a traditional one or a destination wedding, is a big deal. We have to think about our backgrounds, beliefs, budget, and what we personally want. When couples think about their future, they discuss what their perfect wedding looks like. This conversation can be tricky because everyone has their unique dream. One of the significant decisions is about the venue: will it be close to home or in a distant place? Considering the pros and cons of having a destination wedding can help make the right choice, merging our childhood dreams with our grown-up plans.

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Pros

Budget Considerations:

  • The budget is often a deciding factor in many decisions regarding a wedding.
  • The average cost of a local or domestic wedding is approximately $35,000.
  • A destination wedding is usually a cheaper option.
  • Tip: Hiring a destination wedding planner can help lower the costs.
    • Planners have first-hand knowledge of local vendors who provide essential services.
    • Not having to transport flowers, cake, and décor will lower costs.
    • Planners are aware of resorts that offer packages and current promotions.

Intimacy and Engagement:

  • A destination wedding is typically more intimate.
  • Saves money on food and drink.
  • Allows couples to spend quality time with guests.
  • Can provide an opportunity to involve guests in the ceremony.
  • Tip: Collaborate with the wedding planner to organize arts and crafts activities before the wedding to include in the ceremony décor.

Family and Guest Interaction:

  • Ideal for couples from different parts of the world.
  • Provides an opportunity for families to bond.
  • Offers an unforgettable vacation experience for the couple and guests.
  • Tip: Work with the planner to incorporate authentic details into the ceremony and reception for a local cultural experience.

Millennial Trends:

  • Destination weddings can be tailored to the bride and groom’s uniqueness.
  • 1 in 5 American couples marry abroad, but 40% of millennials choose destination weddings.
  • Millennials value unique details and locations.
  • They prioritize experiences over material possessions.
  • Tip: Wedding planners will research various locations to offer options that cater to the couple’s unique interests.
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Cons

Challenges of Planning from Afar:

  • Planning a wedding from a distance can be daunting.
  • The couple might lack personal experience with the chosen location.
  • Marrying in a foreign country can involve visas and licenses, adding to the list of details.
  • Tip: Destination wedding planners are knowledgeable about legal requirements and can inform both the couple and guests. They often have insider knowledge of resorts and specific locations.

Advanced Planning Required:

  • Destination weddings demand early preparation.
  • Venues need to be researched and booked at least a year in advance.
  • Short engagements may not suit this option.
  • Save-the-date cards should be sent 9-12 months prior, allowing guests to arrange time off and budget for the trip.

Guest Attendance Concerns:

  • Not all invitees will be able to make it due to travel demands.
  • Some guests might struggle with vacation bookings, costs, or physical challenges of the journey.
  • Tip: Consider organizing a casual post-wedding reception locally. This caters to those unable to attend the wedding or those not on the primary invite list.

Complexity of Destination Weddings:

  • They entail organizing a ceremony, reception, and vacation simultaneously.
  • Customizing an event at a remote location can induce stress.
  • Tip: Engage a professional destination wedding planner to research and handle details like location scouting, local vendor liaisons, décor, and travel arrangements for all attendees.

Decision-making and Reflection:

  • Choosing between a local and a destination wedding is monumental.
  • Childhood dreams of grand gowns and cakes might have evolved into aspirations for unique destination experiences.
  • Thoroughly weigh the pros and cons with your partner before deciding.
  • Opting for a destination wedding planner will simplify the process, making that choice as effortless as saying “I do”.

In Conclusion:

Navigating the labyrinth of wedding planning can be overwhelming, especially when considering a ceremony far from home. Destination weddings, while offering a unique and memorable experience, come with their own set of challenges. Yet, with thoughtful preparation, the right guidance, and a touch of adventure, they can truly become the stuff of dreams. 

Whether you envision an intimate beach ceremony or a grand affair in an historic castle, the key lies in understanding the intricacies and being well-prepared. As with all significant life decisions, it’s essential to weigh the pros and cons, and seek expert guidance where needed. After all, your wedding is a celebration of love, unity, and the start of a beautiful journey together. 

Remember, no matter where you choose to say “I do,” the journey is just as important as the destination.

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