Destination Weddings Legal or Symbolic

When you are getting married, there are so many decisions to make and so many details to plan. One of the most important decisions is where your wedding will be held. For some couples, a destination wedding may be ideal. A beautiful location with a fun atmosphere that feels like a party every time you look at it! With this in mind, I’ve put together some important things for you to think about regarding destination weddings and the difference between a legal and symbolic ceremony.

destination weddings legal or symbolic

What is a Destination Wedding?

A destination wedding is when a couple gets married somewhere other than where they currently live. A destination wedding can be a great choice for couples who want to explore other cultures, get away from their hometown, or just have an adventure. There are many types of destination weddings, including destination weddings that are more than just a wedding trip.

Location, Location, Location

When picking a destination, it’s important to pick a place that fits both your and your partner’s interests and personalities. This will make the trip more exciting and enjoyable. It can also help create a more memorable trip because you’ll be spending time in a place that’s special to both of you. If you pick a destination that’s too far from home, your guests may feel bad about the cost to travel, and they may not want to make the trip. You don’t want to make your guests feel uncomfortable with their finances or the trip itself, so pick a location that is both within your guests’ budget and fun to visit!

The Beauty of a Destination Wedding

If you’re into traveling and having an adventure, a destination wedding can be a great way to do both. You can choose a destination that fits both of your interests, which will make it even more special. There are many benefits to having a destination wedding, including how it makes your guests feel. It’s more likely to make your guests feel like they’re having an adventure too, and getting away on a fun trip. It’s also a great way to make memories with your partner that will last forever.

If you’re interested in exploring another culture, a destination wedding can be a great way to learn about another place and its people. Many couples feel that the beauty and scenery of their destination are what they love most about it. However, this isn’t always the case. Sometimes, it’s the people, the environment, and other things that make a destination truly special and memorable.

Legal Considerations for a Destination Wedding

While destination weddings are often a lot of fun and exciting, they do have one legal issue for you to consider. A legal (civil) ceremony has an additional cost for the paperwork, officiant blood tests (if they are required), document translation services, an apostille, etc. The requirements and costs vary based on the specific destination.

To avoid the added cost and a few potential headaches, many couples choose to have a symbolic ceremony. They get the legal stuff out of the way back home, before or after their destination wedding. No one is the wiser if you don’t spill the beans that you are already legally married, or plan to seal the deal when you return home.

The Price of A Destination Wedding & Travel

Traveling to a destination wedding can be costly. It’s important to set aside enough money to cover both your wedding event and your travel costs. Depending on where you want to go, the cost could range from $10,000 -$30,000+, based on the number of guests, the location, the resort/venue, and all of the ceremony and wedding activities you want to include.

There are resort locations in Mexico for example, that have packages that include up to 30 people, that range from $4,000 to $5,000 for just the wedding ceremony & reception. Please keep in mind, that many resorts charge an outside vendor fee for photography and videography for example, if you choose someone that is not one of the location’s preferred vendors. The outside vendor fee can range from $300 – $1,800 based on the venue or resort.

Pro-tip: Consider applying for a cashback credit card to use for your wedding deposit, your group room block deposit, and other associated wedding costs to help you save a little bit of money. Look for cards that offer a cashback match, and 0% interest for an extended period of time. For example, The Discover it Cash Back card.

Who’s Invited?

If you’re having a destination wedding, there will be some people you invite, who won’t attend. If that is a problem for you or your partner, consider hosting an after-wedding party back home. So those who couldn’t make it can celebrate with you.

Final Words

To make sure your wedding goes off without a hitch, work with a destination wedding travel specialist or planner. Choose someone that has worked with the resort or venue, and knows the location. They will be your ally throughout the entire process and eliminate any planning stress.

Be flexible with your wedding date. Many popular places for destination weddings have limited availability, as far out as 2024. Consider a midweek day (Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday) for better options.

For questions about destination weddings, and legal or symbolic ceremonies, reach out to me.

How to Plan the Best Elopement or Micro Wedding

Do you want a small, intimate wedding or a big, ritzy affair? Deciding on the right kind of elopement or micro wedding requires taking into account a number of factors. Are you looking for a small wedding with only a few guests? If so, choose an elopement because it’ll be the most intimate and special option. Do you want to avoid large weddings with hundreds of guests? In that case, you may want to consider a smaller wedding with around 50 guests. Wherever you end up going for your special day, keep these tips in mind so that your special day doesn’t end up feeling like an ordeal. After all, it’s important to have an enjoyable and stress-free celebration. So here are some helpful hints on how to plan the best elopement or micro wedding.

how to plan the best elopement or micro wedding

Decide on your ideal length first

One of the most important decisions you can make before speaking with any vendors is to decide on the ideal elopement or micro wedding length. If you’re looking for a small, intimate wedding, then an elopement or micro wedding is the perfect option. That being said, smaller weddings usually call for shorter elopements. You don’t have to be a rule-breaker to celebrate a small wedding. In fact, you and any guests can still have a lot of fun and enjoy yourselves in a very charming way. A quick elopement or micro wedding typically lasts from a day to 5 days, but if you and your future spouse want to go the extra mile and celebrate your love longer, you can always book a second ceremony or reception when you get home to celebrate with family and friends who were unable to join you.

Decide on the number of guests you’ll have

Planning a wedding is always nerve-wracking. How will you and your guests be seated, what drinks will be served, what food, and the number of courses, etc. are all important to keep in mind. You don’t want to end up with too many guests or a small guest list and have to add to it later to meet venue requirements. If you’re having a micro wedding, you will want to keep the guest count to no more than 50 people. If that’s the case, consider a destination wedding. Destination weddings can be just as charming as a home-cooked meal. You can always add on another ceremony or reception/celebration after you return home to celebrate with loved ones who could not attend.

Decide on your venue

Venues can vary from extremely expensive to reasonably priced. It’s important to consider your budget when it comes to your wedding. You don’t want to end up with a wedding that feels like a steal because you spent less money. If you want to keep your budget under control, a great option is to choose a budget-friendly venue. If you’re on a tight budget, consider smaller hotels or venues, outdoor natural locations, or reduce the number of guests. If you choose a destination wedding, reduce the number of nights you will stay, or travel during the off-season for a better value.

For convenience and stress-free planning, choose a wedding planner & travel specialist to work with

A great option is to choose a wedding planner & travel specialist to work with. They’ll help you select the best vendors for your budget and schedule. Some of the things that a good wedding planner & travel specialist will do for you include: Getting you Registered with the appropriate authorities (if you’re having a legal ceremony outside of the United States), finding a local wedding photographer, a local florist, and a caterer (if one is needed). Your travel specialist will work with you to choose a resort location that offers you everything you will need for a magical wedding day, and help you make all of your travel arrangements.

Consider the location of your ceremony and reception

Don’t settle for anything less than the best when it comes to your wedding destination. Look for a hotel with a charming garden or reception area. Ideally, your ceremony and reception will take place in the same location. When it comes to the date for your wedding, there are options based on availability. If you have a specific date in mind, start planning early to confirm your date.

Get your creative juices flowing!

Planning a wedding can be nerve-wracking and stressful. Thankfully, there are a number of options that will help make your special day as stress-free as possible. You can always use a little creative inspiration and assistance when planning your wedding. Reach out to me here to start planning your elopement or micro wedding, or if you have any questions.

Luxury Travel: Mexico’s Caribbean

Bring on the high thread count linens, the delicious food, and the optional nanny services (yes please!). When traveling as a couple, or a family, there are countless things to consider, from appropriate accommodations to food that will satisfy everyone. From private villas and five-star hotels to sprawling resorts, everyone will be well taken care of at these properties below. Plan your luxury travel in Mexico’s Caribbean.

grand velas vacation packages
Photo Credit: Velas Resorts

Grand Velas Riviera Maya

This AAA Five Diamond property is sprawled across 80 acres and never feels crowded. The Grand Velas Riviera Maya understands the challenges faced when traveling with babies and boasts its own baby concierge (yes, really!) The concierge provides you with everything from bottle sterilizers and baby bathtubs to strollers and teething toys. Babysitters are available for an additional charge. The kids and teens clubs (catering to ages 4-12 and 12-18 respectively) offer adults the perfect chance for some alone time by the pool. Attentive pool and beach concierges ensure guests will want for nothing.

tulum mexico, luxury travel mexico's caribbean

Fairmont Mayakoba

Offering the kind of five-star service that Fairmont Hotels and Resorts is famous for, Fairmont Mayakoba does not disappoint. Despite its proximity to Playa del Carmen, Fairmont Mayakoba feels a world away. Set amidst 240 acres of tropical rainforest complete with canals and local wildlife that guests will love. With most buildings set back from the beach, Fairmont Mayakoba aims to maintain the integrity and preservation of its ecosystem. For guests who want to leave their wallets tucked in the safe, the optional all-inclusive package is the way to go. Fairmont’s AI package includes unlimited dining and beverage service at 3 of their restaurants and 5 of their bars. Kids will love the waterslide at the main pool. Also, the excursions throughout the property are led by the Discovery Club (ages 4-6) and Adventure Club (ages 7-12). For older kids and adults, there are complimentary bikes available, perfect for exploring.

palm trees on beach

Hotel Esencia

Situated between Playa Del Carmen and Tulum, Hotel Esencia offers couples and families an intimate getaway. Be prepared for staff to know your name. Take full advantage of the ‘Nanny on Call’ program, offering two hours of complimentary babysitting so the adults can spend some time alone. At Hotel Esencia it’s the small touches that make the biggest impact. Like the samples of local small-batch Casa Dragones tequila left for guests in their rooms. With multi-lingual nannies (and a chef willing to make baby food to order) even the youngest guests will be taken care of.

villa rentals mexico

PRIVATE VILLAS

If you want to really feel at home in Mexico’s Caribbean, look no further than a private villa. With endless options, you can choose from tranquil beach-front estates to eco-friendly abodes set amongst palm trees and crystal clear cenotes. For example, the Hacienda del Mar villa features 7 bedrooms and two separate casitas spread over 16,000 square feet of oceanfront property. Included are daily maid service, a personal butler, a gourmet chef, and daily concierge service.

If you’re looking to get away to Mexico’s Caribbean with the whole family, contact me here. I’d love to put together the perfect luxury travel package to Mexico’s Caribbean for you!