Off Site Wedding Venue Misconceptions


I can’t even believe we’re already on the LAST post of this three part series on offsite venues! I am excited to tackle this part too – Off Site Wedding Venue MISCONCEPTIONS! Have you been loving the information so far? If these three part series posts that go in depth are something you want me to do more of – make sure to contact me and let me know!  I love hearing what you guys like and don’t like so I can tailor the content to you and make sure that I’m being super helpful – I don’t write these for me 😉 If you ever have a suggestion for what you would like to see, head to my contact form or shoot me an email at . Nothing makes me happier than waking up to a full inbox! I am kind of crazy that way.

Psst: Accidentally starting with Part Three? Make sure to also head to Part One to Check Out a Few of my favourite off site venues, & Part Two to read all about Off Site Wedding Venue ADVANTAGES.   Although I do believe if you want a wedding that is simple and beautiful, or you love to DIY, you can get away with working with the resort coordinator at your venue instead of hiring a full-service wedding planner, this is not the case with off site venues. Trust me, hire a professional. You won’t regret it.

Thinking Love at First Travel might be a good fit? Head to our services page to see what we offer. Or, read more about us here. Already committed? Contact us.


Off Site Venue in Jamaica - Reception Dinner Set Up

Photographer Manuela Stefan Photography – Venue: Borghinvilla Wedding Venue –

Borghinvilla in Jamaica


If you have been following along by now your head is probably full of ideas and excitement over one in off site venue could offer you in terms of destination wedding options! You might have a nagging voice at the back of your mind now filled with misconceptions and hearsay about off site wedding venues so in this post I am going to put some of these top misconceptions the test !

Please keep in mind that your options for offsite venues are plentiful so even though I have tried to find information that is both general AND useful (a fine line, at the best of times), there will always be exceptions to every rule.  Your absolute best option is to start working with a destination wedding planner (contact me if you think I am the right fit!) as soon as you can so they can help you narrow down your options!

Before I dive in to the misconceptions, I just want to give credit to Jennifer Borgh at Borghinvilla. Borghinvilla is an incredible off site venue in Jamaica. This whole series truly was a collaboration with her and she was incredibly helpful! The information online is SO LIMITED so trust me, I have the same frustrations as you! I really appreciated her help on this project and can’t wait to work with her for future weddings. She is clearly very passionate about her work and it comes through in every conversation. As a Canadian herself, she really gets what Canadian couples are looking for. I am happy to share her venue with my readers as I find it to be a truly incredible venue.


bride debating between off site venue ideas

Photographer Manuela Stefan Photography – Venue: Borghinvilla Wedding Venue –

Misconception #1 It is way more expensive/less expensive to go off-site

Surprisingly enough, I have heard both!  Whether or not an offsite venue it’s gonna be more expensive largely depends on what you are comparing. Which resort you’re getting married at (and the starting vs actual price of their wedding package) and what you are expecting from the off site venue make a huge difference.  The same way resort wedding packages might range from “free” to “starting at” $10,000USD, there is a huge difference between off site venues.

Honestly I have been meaning to write a whole blog post on this topics because I could really go into detail but for your free wedding packages at the resort are never really free ! You might be able to elope for free, maybe. Assuming your reception is just dinner at one of the restaurants that are already included in your stay.  I don’t know if I would go as extreme to say the word “scam” but it can definitely be misleading if you are expecting to have your wedding at a resort for free because you see these free packages advertised.

If you and your fiancé are wanting something unique and highly personalized/specific an offsite venue is probably going to be cheaper. No matter which resort you choose, I always recommend going with the most-inclusive package because the add ones can add up quickly!

bride trying to put the pieces of a wedding together

Photographer Manuela Stefan Photography – Venue: Borghinvilla Wedding Venue –


Misconception #2 It is way harder to plan an off site wedding because resorts take care of everything for you

You often have more options when it comes to off site venues, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that things have to become harder to plan.  Yes, resorts take care of everything for you. They make it really easy to have a destination wedding at the resort.  But offsite venues often have on-site coordinators that take care of everything too! And to be completely honest, they usually respond a lot faster to emails!

Want a little more reassurance? You can choose to hire a local wedding planner in destination or hire a local wedding planner that specializes in destination weddings.  I know I offer three different packages which you can find on my homepage depending on what you are looking for! Package #2 or #3 is perfect for a couple looking for just a little bit more help (or a lot more help!) organizing their off-site destination wedding. Make sure to contact me if this is something you might be interested in!

luxury wedding venue

Photographer Manuela Stefan Photography – Venue: Borghinvilla Wedding Venue –


Misconception #3 I can have the luxury wedding I want and chose a budget resort for my guests

Technically this isn’t a misconception because it’s true – you can do anything you want.  That being said, it’s not necessarily the best idea. I know sometimes you can hear some resistance from guests because of price. In case you are wondering, this price resistance happens whether you choose a $1700/person resort or $2500+/person resort. Because you are often booking your destination wedding a year or more in advance, it may seem expensive to guests that are looking for last minute deals.

REAL TALK is coming up so listen up! The only thing worse than having a guest complaining that the resort you chose is “too expensive“, is having guests that are at your destination wedding complaining about the resort you chose.  Don’t get me wrong there are very many value conscious resorts that I would be happy to recommend if you contact me but choosing a “cheap” resort to try and keep your guests happy is a losing battle.

night time beach reception

Photographer Manuela Stefan Photography – Venue: Borghinvilla Wedding Venue –

Misconception #4 I have the same freedom with an off site wedding venue as I do with a resort

Absolutely not.  Again this depends on what offsite wedding venue you’re comparing it to because some of them are just as restrictive as resorts. For many off site venues though, the main advantage is actually how much freedom they give you to have the wedding that you want without compromise. If budget isn’t a concern you will have significantly more freedom with a resort then you will if do have a budget (like most of us)! Like I mentioned earlier, add ones to resort packages get expensive.

That being said there are certain rules that won’t be broken by resorts no matter what your budget is. One of the biggest negatives for couples that I work with is that most (almost all) resorts will only let you keep your wedding reception going outside until 11 PM. They do this out of consideration for the other guest staying at the properties. If you want to keep the party going late you have to move inside to a ballroom. No midnight beach bonfire allowed!

sharing coconut cocktails at destination wedding

Photographer Manuela Stefan Photography – Venue: Borghinvilla Wedding Venue –

Misconception #5 I will be inconveniencing my guests by choosing an off site wedding venue


Every guest is different but off site venues tend to give off a WOW factor not an inconvenience!  With destination weddings becoming more and more popular, your guests may have already experienced a beach wedding at a resort before.  By going off-site, you might be sharing something truly unique.

Of course there are a few things you need to consider so your guests are not inconvenienced.  The biggest factor here is arranging transportation. Make sure to arrange transportation from the resort to the venue in advance, so they don’t need to worry.  Don’t forget to arrange a rides home as well.  Depending how late you want your wedding party too go or how big your guest list is, you may want to consider offering rides back to the resort at different times throughout the night.


jamaica wedding venue - private

Photographer Manuela Stefan Photography – Venue: Borghinvilla Wedding Venue –

Any Questions?


Are these some of the same misconceptions you have about off site venues? Did I help answer some of your questions? I really hope tackling these misconceptions makes you feel more comfortable when thinking about your own destination wedding. You should consider going off the resort! Make sure to head back to Part One – I share my favourite off site wedding venues. I hope they leave you feeling inspired. Make sure to stay tuned for next week where I share the main questions you should ask an off site venue before you book!

Still have questions?! Or want clarification on anything? Please feel free to contact me anytime ❤️ Want me to help you plan your special day? Head to my about page to learn more about me. Or, take a peek at my services menu. Want to dive into conversation? Fill out the form below telling me what you are looking for and I will contact you.

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