Carefree elegance in a magnificent spot! That’s what any destination wedding is about, aside from having a trimmed down guest list, minimal wedding décor, and a picturesque wedding backdrop. You don’t have to plan anything too formal or traditional. No need to worry about a lavish wedding setup.
The beauty of a destination wedding is that it fuses the sweetness of an intimate ceremony with the fun of a relaxing vacation. Normally set in romantic getaways, couples normally combine destination wedding celebrations with their honeymoon escape. And it is an instant holiday for the rest of the invited party!
But this unique wedding, although it has its perks, does require a tremendous amount of advance planning for the couple, as well as their families and guests. This is true if you have not been to a destination wedding yourself. Touch base with a certified travel specialist like Travel to Maui to connect you with reliable vendors in the area that will help wedding planning easier. Bear in mind that there will be expectations, especially there are financial factors involved (hotels and plane tickets, to name a few) on the part of the invited people. For most of them, they’re hoping to turn the wedding event into a week-long reunion of sorts.
So, to lighten up the load for the bride/couple, below is a helpful itinerary designed to keep things simple and organized. Amid all the pressures and an ocean of expectations, don’t forget that the reason why you’re all gathered in this idyllic location away from home is because of your wedding. That should always be on top of the planning ladder! Everything else is just a gravy.
Day One: Family Time
After unpacking your wedding essentials (wedding dress, linen tablecloths and chair covers, wedding accessories, etc), schedule an intimate dinner with the family. The bride and groom should invite both their parents and if siblings are in town, send out an invitation for them too.
This is a perfect opportunity to make everyone feel comfortable around one another and feel that this event is one “huge family experience” instead of being a wedding event.
Day Two: Welcome Brunch & Tour Day
The upswing in destination wedding bookings is largely thanks to couples who, instead of going the traditional way, opted for a more economical and fun-filled alternative. So, prepare to wake up early on your second day, glance at your checklist of invited people and have a head count.
Give them a quick tour of the hotel (or wherever they’re staying at) and have everything culminate at the Brunch area. The bride and groom should host this event and make sure that everyone is up for this momentous occasion. Things don’t have to be formal. It is expected that invited guests will have their own itinerary for the day, so encourage them to just go ahead with their game plan and enjoy the area. But before you send them off, give them your contact info so they can reach you whenever they have concerns.
Day Three: Rehearsal Dinner
Traditionally hosted by the Groom’s family, give everyone involved a heads up the night before about the rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner. This way, all schedules are coordinated and everybody is informed about the exact time of practice.
Day Four: Wedding Day Buffet (Brunch or Lunch)
If you’re having a late afternoon or an evening ceremony, it would be nice to offer Brunch or Lunch for the guests at the hotel closest to where the wedding will take place. This information should be part of the “wedding map and schedule” that is attached to the wedding invitation you’ve sent out weeks before the whole bridal party flew to the venue. Typically, the bride and groom won’t be present because they’re busy preparing for the wedding proper.
Day Five: Coffee and Breakfast (Maybe Brunch)
Some people schedule their trips home the day after the wedding. So it’s always great to have a sweet and thankful send-off. Most of your guests would always aim for 9-11 in the morning flights so consider setting up a breakfast buffet and coffee station around 7AM.