As you may already know, Elegante by Michelle J, specialises in destination wedding planning, both overseas and at home in the UK. That’s not to say I can’t (and indeed I often do) plan a local wedding in London, but the point here is that I have the specialist skills needed for destination wedding planning.
So, let’s take a run through how destination wedding planning differs from a wedding close to home and what those additional skills are.
Other wedding weekend hospitality
To start with, we usually look to host the guests throughout the entire weekend, and not just on the wedding day only. After all, your guests have made a huge effort to join you for your wedding – so in my opinion it’s really important that you show your appreciation. It’s also a great way of giving everyone a chance to connect and get to know each other. It really does add to the wedding experience. In keeping with my focus on the details, where we can, we try to make the other hospitality as authentic as possible and in contrast to your wedding day plans.
As an example, we recently planned a wedding in Italy at a beautiful villa with panoramic views of the Isola Bella in Taormina.
So, as a contrast to this, we headed up the hill to the historic town of Taormina, where we found a fantastic arancini bar in which to host the wedding welcome party.
All of this means that destination wedding planning includes party planning as well as wedding planning.
Wedding planners working locally to home will build up a pool of trusted suppliers who they work with on a regular basis. For destination weddings, your planner might be working in different countries and regions every time they take on a new wedding. So this means that in the case of destination wedding planning, sourcing new suppliers is a regular occurrence. Your destination wedding planner must be capable of conducting proper research and due diligence to ensure that the suppliers they are recommending to your wedding will be passionate, professional and up to the job.
A destination wedding planner needs to assist with the ceremony planning; be it religious, civil or symbolic. Ceremony laws in the host country need to be understood and all of the options carefully explained to the couple. And navigating the process needs to be under the remit of the planner.
Travel and Accommodation
A part of the destination wedding planning role is to assist where necessary with travel and accommodation. So my “little black book” of trusted suppliers also includes travel specialists. And do bear in mind that we are not just talking here about guests travel and accommodation arrangements, but we are also often required to organise logistics for all of the suppliers that we bring from home. Where possible, it is of course preferable to use suppliers who are local to your wedding venue, but sometimes the better option is to bring someone from home (or even elsewhere) and in these circumstances your destination wedding planner will need to get involved in making all of the necessary arrangements.
When your guests are making such an effort to join you at your overseas destination wedding, we need to ensure that the entire experience is not only enjoyable, but also as easy and as effortless as possible. So, destination wedding planning generally involves looking after your guests. We deal with their queries, we provide them with all of the information that they need and we host them in a way that we would not necessarily be required to do at a local wedding close to home.
I have written other blog posts about destination wedding planning, which you can check out at the following links:
And if you would like to find out more about my destination wedding planning services, please do get in touch. You can contact me by email, by phone on + 44 020 3930 9459 or by heading over to the contact page on my website.
All of the weddings featured in this blog post were planned, designed and co-ordinated by Elegante by Michelle J.