Destination weddings are becoming a huge trend. Marrying away is an affordable way to not only save money but to enjoy family and friends in a relaxed setting.
Averaging about $15,000 or less as of August 2009, destination weddings can be several thousand dollars less than the typical $25,000 wedding.
Destination wedding packages vary in their inclusions, and values range from $750 to a few thousand dollars depending on its contents. But most include ceremony site and officiant, cake and celebratory champagne, and a few images of the ceremony. Many also offer an onsite planner.
The most popular places for couples getting away to get hitched include Cancun/Riviera Maya, Mexico; Jamaica; Dominican Republic; Cabo San Lucas, Mexico; Puerto Vallarta, Mexico; Nassau, Bahamas; St. Lucia, U.S. Virgin Islands; Aruba; and Antigua.
With family and friends, destination weddings are a vacation for everyone. Destination weddings can be less per guest than a traditional wedding because there are fewer guests and many of the individual costs are included. Couples are already on their honeymoon. Several resorts offer complimentary packages if honeymoons are booked.
Things to Consider
Many packages require deposits upon booking. The industry standard is half the total cost to confirm the date, but some might require the total package price with additional amenities paid upon the ceremony or check-out. Be aware of taxes, tariffs and currency exchange, as well as marriage regulations in foreign countries.
Jessica M. Denmark is a PR/Event professional living in Savannah, Ga. Writing for more than a decade, she has been published online and in print, and posts sporadically on her book review blog, jessicaetcetera, in between planning fabulous agendas and events for Savannah visitors and organizing weddings for Southern brides.