Dreamy Destinations: Crafting Your Perfect Destination Wedding

Envisioning saying “I do” against the backdrop of pristine beaches or historical landscapes? Look no further for your dream destination wedding.

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In this guide, we explore the allure of Seychelles, Mauritius, Greece, or the Maldives, offering a glimpse into the magic they hold for couples seeking the perfect wedding experience. 

What is meant by “destination wedding”? 

Embarking on the journey of a destination wedding involves more than just selecting a beautiful locale. It's about creating a unique and memorable experience for you and your guests. A “destination wedding” simply means holding your wedding somewhere other than the place in which you live. For some, that means a town a few hour's drive away, whereas for other couples, it means asking guests to travel to another province, state, or even another country. Destination weddings are not just venues; they are the canvas upon which you paint the first strokes of the painting of the rest of your life together. 

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Why do couples choose a destination wedding? 

Couples pick destination weddings for a few simple reasons. First off, they want something different. A destination wedding isn't your usual hometown affair — it's a chance to say “I do” in a place that stands out. Depending on the couple, that could mean an island paradise or cool historic spots. 

Another big reason is keeping things small. Destination weddings often mean fewer people, making it more about spending time with the people you really care about. Plus, it's a handy way to mix the wedding and honeymoon. No need to rush off to another place when you're already in a romantic paradise, after all! In short, destination weddings dial down the stress, dial up the fun, and give couples a unique start to their happily ever after. 

Finding affordable wedding destinations 

Contrary to popular belief, destination weddings need not break the bank. For a start, they are often smaller, meaning that your catering budget needs to extend to fewer people. Holding your wedding far from home will also naturally limit some of the excesses that weddings can be prone to. Most destination weddings will be held in naturally beautiful places, meaning your décor budget need not be large.  

Some locations are also known for being more affordable than others. Thailand is a popular destination wedding location, as is Greece. Depending on where the couple hails from, locations like Mexico or Costa Rica can also be wonderful and affordable choices for a destination wedding. These are generally better for North American couples. European or African couples may choose the Indian Ocean Islands for their “I do”, celebrating in Mauritius or even Zanzibar. Some European locations, like Portugal, are known for being more affordable locations. 

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Making the most of your destination wedding location 

For those looking to celebrate their wedding on location, it’s not always about finding a great deal. Some couples are looking for ways to really do the most for their celebration, and there’s no better place to do that than on islands like the Seychelles or the Maldives. These islands are like paradise, making them the ideal backdrop for your lavish affair.  

How much does a destination wedding cost in South Africa? 

Costs vary, depending on so many factors. A wedding of 10 close friends and family members will cost a vastly different amount to one including 50 of your nearest and dearest. South Africa is often a popular destination wedding location for foreign couples who travel from Europe and North America to celebrate on our fair shores. For them, the Rand-Dollar/Pound/Euro conversion makes everything much more affordable. 

For South African couples looking to hold their wedding overseas, the Far East — Thailand or Vietnam — can have a favourable conversion rate, making weddings there an attractive option. Turkey and Zanzibar can also have a more favourable conversion, making them more.

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Do guests pay for a destination wedding? 

What guests pay for a wedding will vary depending on the situation, the couple, and the economic situation of the guests. Some couples will ask their guests to pay for their own travel to the location, but will pay for their accommodation. Depending on the location, the couple may choose to pay for or subsidise the accommodation of their guests, or pay for their travel costs too.  

Each wedding will be different, and the responsibility lies with the couple planning the wedding to communicate the details properly. The guests can then decide if they are willing and able to pay for the parts they will be responsible for, and accept or decline their invitation accordingly. 

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Essentials for a destination wedding 

Destination weddings actually have far fewer “musts” than hometown weddings can have. Generally, all you need for a wedding is the couple, a few witnesses and the officiant, but we all know that weddings tend to spiral out into a far wider net of “must haves”. Here are a few items that will make the experience more pleasant for all concerned: 

  • Legalities: Research and understand the legalities and requirements for getting married in the chosen destination. This includes marriage licenses, residency requirements, and any specific documents needed. 
  • Local support: It might not seem like a budget-conscious move, but consider hiring a local wedding planner who knows the area, and culture, and can navigate local regulations. They can be instrumental in co-ordinating logistics and ensuring everything runs seamlessly, plus they often have personal relationships with vendors and can get better prices than you can. 
  • Accommodations: Provide guests with clear information on accommodation options, including hotels or resorts with special rates. Consider booking room blocks to make the process easier for both you and your guests. 
  • Weather: Know the typical weather conditions for the destination during your wedding date. Plan accordingly, whether it's providing shade, offering fans, or having a backup indoor option in case of unexpected weather changes. 
  • Travel logistics: Offer detailed travel information, including the best ways for guests to reach the destination, transportation options from the airport, and any special arrangements for group travel. 
  • Communication: Set up a wedding website or use a dedicated communication channel to keep guests informed about the schedule, dress code, and any pre- or post-wedding activities. 
  • Local touches: Embrace the local culture by incorporating it into your wedding, whether through cuisine, decorations, or entertainment. It adds a unique touch to your celebration. 
  • Health and safety: Be aware of health considerations, such as vaccinations or health precautions, especially if the destination is in a different climate or region. 
  • Photography and documentation: Ensure your photographer is familiar with the destination and can capture its unique beauty. Additionally, have backup copies of important documents, including your marriage license. 
  • Guest comfort: Consider guest comfort during the event. Provide essentials like sunscreen, insect repellent, and any other items that may enhance their experience. 
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Ready to say “I do” to the wedding of your dreams?  

Explore Seychelles, Mauritius, Greece, and the Maldives for an enchanting experience, then get in touch with one of our experienced travel planners and let us help you have the destination wedding of your dreams. 

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