So many reasons. Honestly I knew I wanted to have a destination wedding even before I attended my first destination wedding in 2012. My fiance on the other hand needed a bit more convincing. I think sometimes men get drawn into what the wedding industry is selling us even more than women! Of course this makes sense because (some!) men only see “average” weddings and don’t spend hours on pinterest searching “budget wedding” or “wedding under 5K” .
Of course herein lies the dilemma because your “average” wedding has an above average price of over $30,000. My husband and I knew we didn’t want to spend anywhere close to that but if we had a home wedding our guest list was non-negotiable. We both have big families and with just our “must have” family members and friends we were at almost 150 people. To save you time, when you google how to cut wedding costs it really comes down to cutting two things: your guest list and/or catering. Our guest list couldn’t really be made smaller to replicate the affordable pinterest weddings that usually have a guest list between 30-65. My husband was originally against having a destination wedding but he also didn’t love the idea of having a wedding without serving food or drinks either. Call us crazy but the idea of saving money for the next five years to spend it on one day wasn’t appealing either. So I searched and searched the internet and found that if I chose the absolute cheapest of everything I could find for our local wedding we would be at a conservative $15,000. So enters the opportunity to show my fiance the perks of getting married abroad.
Perks of choosing a Destination Wedding over the Traditional Wedding you originally wanted:
- You can invite everyone. Obviously not everyone will attend. To be honest, only about 30% of the people we invited signed up. However, the people who came are some of the closest people in the world to us so our wedding had a very intimate feel.
- You can spend a whole (amazing!) week with your guests. This is especially true for Canadian weddings because a destination wedding vacation is almost always a week (2-4 day destination weddings are more common in the US but in Canada 7 day packages are much more popular). Have you ever been to a wedding where you could hardly connect with the bride and groom because they are so busy trying to visit with everyone they invited? I knew that wasn’t for me.
- You can have your cake and eat it too with an At Home Reception (AHR). You don’t have to give up the dream of having a big party with 100 of your closest family and friends just to have a destination wedding. But when you plan an At Home Reception there isn’t as much pressure to have everything perfect and adhere to wedding standards like there is with a traditional wedding. Cake and cocktails? Sure. Backyard BBQ? Sounds good. Even though you might not want these for a traditional wedding they make excellent affordable choices for a AHR.
- You can plan as much or as little as you like. If you are planning on getting married in an “All-inclusive” location like Mexico or somewhere else in the Caribbean the resort planner won’t start planning your wedding details until about 3-4 months before your wedding date. And really, they have professional wedding-ready packages so you can really personalize it as much as you wish but you don’t need to and you will still have a beautiful wedding. Enjoy being engaged!
- You save money and get an absolutely breathtaking wedding. Let’s face it, Destination Weddings are absolutely stunning. I am not saying that traditional weddings aren’t beautiful (obviously if two people who are close to you are tying the knot – it is going to be stunning no matter what!). You can have a breathtaking destination wedding for a very small investment but if you do have money to spare it can become incredible. I know that based on what I found locally for $15,000, I would not have been happy with what I would have had here in Edmonton. Obviously everyone will have different ideas on what they want from a wedding but if a beach wedding is something that appeals to you, a Destination Wedding is well worth considering. The average couple spends less than $5000 plus travel on a destination wedding but packages range from free to $10,00+ depending what you are looking for.
Thinking about a Destination Wedding? Your VERY FIRST step should be downloading my FREE 9 Step Guide for Canadians Planning Destination Weddings here .
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