There was a time when getting married abroad meant choosing bouquet 1, 2 or 3 upon arrival and hoping that the officiant got your name right during the ceremony. However, the rising popularity of destination weddings and advances in technology have changed the face of planning from afar.
Around a quarter of today’s couples choose to start their married lives with a hint of adventure by opting for a destination wedding. But just because your I Do’s require a passport and packing list doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice a highly personalized event. Here’s just a few of our favorite ways to infuse a sense of your love story and personality as a couple into every aspect of your destination wedding.
DIY Details Go a Long Way
Hopping on a plane doesn’t mean you have to forego DIY’ing certain details, either. Create a small project like welcome bags or programs and bringing them with you on the plane, or ship them ahead of time (just be sure to get all your ducks in a row with customs and security). Don’t shy away from bringing personalized mementos either, such as a monogrammed cake topper or guest favors with your names and wedding date on them.
Don’t Forget the Local Flair
A popular way to personalize any wedding that is almost easier at a destination affair is to bring in local music, ingredients, specialty beverages and other cultural items to help our guests have a unique and authentic experience. Many resorts and hotels will work with you to create a custom menu or signature cocktail that can lend to the ambiance of your big day. So if tacos and margaritas are favorites of yours, why not miniaturize them for your guests to enjoy for cocktail hour. You can even seek out local artisans to craft regional pieces to integrate into your favors or place cards.
Pick Excursions and Activities That Fit Your Personalities
Half of the fun of jetting off somewhere with the ones you love is that you get to spend more time together than just the one day at a traditional wedding. Invite your friends and family to enjoy some of your favorite adventurous activities in the region- from zip lining through the jungle, sailing a catamaran and snorkeling to volleyball tournaments in the sand. If relaxing is more your speed, spa days or a cocktail pool party are also great ways to enjoy your time together and your guests will know how well these activities fit your style.
Create a Send-Off Surprise
Finally, turn the welcome bag on its head and give your guests a courtesy send-off gift with snacks for the plane and a water bottle with a hand-written thank you note to enjoy on the way to the airport. As always, the thought of extra-personalized touches count a lot when it comes to your guests’ overall experience.
In today’s destination wedding-friendly world there is no need to think “cookie cutter “when it comes to your ceremony, reception and beyond. If you want a meaningful, personalized day, anything is possible.
Megan Velez is the Vice President of Product at Destination Wedding Travel Group, the world’s leading destination wedding and romantic travel planning company. Destination Wedding Travel Group, which encompasses GayDestinationWeddings.com, DestinationWeddings.com and LuxuriousDestinationWeddings.com, has worked with over 20,000 couples and half a million guests to plan dream destination weddings around the world. For more information, visit DestinationWeddings.com.