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Important Destination Wedding Etiquette For Couples To Know About

When planning a destination wedding, couples may have a lot of questions in terms of proper etiquette. Who do you invite? When do you send out invitations? Can you still have a registry? These are the things that may overwhelm you and keep you wondering if a destination wedding is the right fit for you. Luckily, we're here to help.

The truth is, proper destination wedding etiquette ranges from couple to couple. Many things are personal preference, and there are no hard and fast rules as to how to plan the perfect destination wedding. 

However, we’ve rounded up some of the essential etiquette guidelines we recommend following when planning a destination wedding.

  • Notify your guests as early as possible

    Destination weddings are both a time and financial commitment to guests, so it's crucial to let them know your intentions well in advance. Aim to send Save The Dates at least eight to ten months before the wedding to allow guests ample time to plan accordingly and book their travel arrangements.

  • Provide clear and detailed information

    Ensure that your wedding website provides clear and detailed information about the destination, accommodations and any activities or special events planned. Include information on necessary travel documents, such as a valid passport, and contact information for your travel specialist who will assist with their booking.

  • Respect guests’ budgets and interests

    Since attending a destination wedding can be quite a significant financial commitment, it's important to be sensitive to your guests' budgets and avoid adding unnecessary expenses or obligations to their itinerary. Your Certified Destination Wedding Specialist can help ensure you choose the right options within your budget.

  • Offer a variety of room options

    We recommend your destination wedding room block include a range of room categories, starting with the lead-in option and adding in a few upgraded suites, such as something with a swim-up pool or balcony Jacuzzi. This allows your guests to choose the best fit for them and satisfies a range of budgets and preferences. 

  • Graciously accept regrets

     It's unrealistic to expect every guest you invite to be able to attend your destination wedding, so it's important to curb your expectations and prepare for a few regretful RSVPs, all while understanding the circumstances.

  • Assist with travel arrangements

    Once you have your room block secured, your Certified Destination Wedding Specialist is there to help your guests make their travel arrangements with ease. Relay the appropriate contact information and instructions to your guests to ensure a seamless booking experience.

  • Create an itinerary

    The beauty of a destination wedding is that it can span across multiple days, giving the perfect opportunity to spend more quality time with your loved ones. It's common for couples to plan multiple events such as a welcome party and group excursion for everyone to enjoy together. Make sure to mark which events are optional, so your guests can have the freedom to choose what they wish to participate in.

  • Offer local recommendations

    Give your guests the opportunity to explore your unique destination while away. Provide suggestions for local attractions and activities in the area, including any onsite amenities at the resort, such as golfing, a casino or spa day.

  • Show appreciation

    Express your gratitude to your guests for their attendance and support. Some ideas include a personalized welcome bag or in-room welcome amenity such as champagne, fruit and a handwritten thank you note.

  • Don’t expect traditional gifts

    A common destination wedding registry idea is to ask for contributions towards your honeymoon experience (this is often called a honeymoon fund). This may include contributing towards first-class airfare, a room upgrade, private dinner on the beach or a couples massage at the spa.

By following these destination wedding etiquette guidelines, you can create an enjoyable experience for you and your guests while celebrating your special day in a beautiful location.

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