Once it was only an option for the rich and famous. But weddings on beaches and in tropical destinations are becoming more and more popular, and available, for the rest of us. With much of the Caribbean only a stone’s throw from the US mainland, heading for the islands has never been easier! So why set your sights on distant shores for a beach wedding? The answer seems simple — we get to travel as well as get married — but actually, there’s more than one reason to marry someplace exotic, and the benefits are numerous.
Enjoy the Savings
Destination weddings are a cost-effective way of hosting your wedding, since both your wedding and your honeymoon are in the same place. Additionally, most resorts offer wedding packages at reduced rates, or even free, to guests who are staying a certain number of nights. All-inclusive resorts roll out the red carpet to wedding couples, offering them free gifts, reduced rates for their wedding party, free wedding cake and champagne, and even a free wedding planner! Since destination weddings typically involve about half the guest list of traditional weddings, you can literally cut your reception budget in half.
Side-Step Family Issues
A wedding away from home can ease tensions and expectations between you and your parents and in-laws. There’s less pressure to get married in the family church or to seat the grandparents at the head table at a Destination Wedding, since all participants are more willing to accept that your wedding will differ from the norm. Also, keep in mind that during the planning processes you won’t be bogged down with family meetings to make every decision on your wedding … it’ll all be up to you and your partner!
A far-off wedding allows you to embrace your imagination and your fantasies. If you feel like holding your ceremony on a beach, under palm trees in bikini and shorts, why not? By freeing yourself of the conventions of home life, you give yourself permission to be creative about your special day. Try out local customs and traditions and explore exotic touches that will make your wedding unique and individual.
Relax Without the Hassle
Destinations around the world, and particularly in the Caribbean, have gotten quite savvy about the destination bride … and literally do all of the work for you. Many locations have eased rules and restrictions on getting married to cater to offshore brides. Local wedding planners also take the stress out of the planning process by simply doing it all. Add this to the popular “on-site” wedding that most resorts offer, and almost everything is handled before you arrive. All you need to do is make your choices and show up.
Perfect for Vow Renewals and Second Weddings
For those who have “been there, done that,” a Destination Wedding can be the perfect alternative to the traditional for second weddings and vow renewal ceremonies. With so many secluded and private resorts offering idyllic packages on the beach, in tropical gardens, or under waterfalls, couples get to have their wedding away from local town commentary. Some resorts/cruise lines also offer kids camps so that your respective offspring can have an opportunity to bond during the trip, while you get a chance to spend quality time alone with your new spouse.
Fun for Your Guests
Instead of wishing you’d spent more time with friends and loved ones, the Destination Wedding gives you the time to do just that. Since many locations demand that you arrive a few days in advance of your wedding ceremony you have the chance to spend time with your guests over extended lunches and dinners and to truly “catch-up” in a relaxed atmosphere. An offshore weddings gives you a “reunion” opportunity whilst also providing you with memories to last forever.
The internet has made planning an island beach wedding a breeze, or as easy as planning any other type of wedding, at least! Web sites have sprung up that provide pretty much everything you need to begin your planning, walking you through all the unique wedding destinations, and putting you in touch with local wedding planners, photographers, florists, hotels and resorts. All you need to do is choose your island!