Weddings traditionally call for a celebratory gathering of a couple's closest family and friends, but it doesn't always have to be that way. These days many couples are buying into the concept of the destination elopement experience -- that is traveling to some epic location to tie the knot alone or with just a handful of family and friends, giving it a more intimate and adventurous feel.
So is a destination elopement the wedding experience for you? Here are 5 reasons why you should consider opting for an destination elopement rather than the traditional wedding celebration route.
1. You want to keep it between the two of you, or perhaps just a few: Eloping can just involve you and your sweetheart, but doesn't have to be that way. Perhaps you want to invite your parents and siblings along, or your best friends. A destination elopement is an intimate experience, the hardest part is keeping it a secret. So if you plan to invite a few family members or friends, be clear to them that you want to keep it on the hush as your wedding getaway nears.
2. You don't want to deal with intricacies of wedding planning: Wedding planning can be stressful and time consuming -- don't let anyone tell you different. Perhaps you don't have the ability to hire a planner or you simply don't have the time/want to go through the process of planning a wedding. If that's the case, an elopement may be right for you. While an elopement doesn't completely relieve you of the planning process, a celebration that just involves you and your sweetheart or just a small circle definitely requires less detailed planning than a big celebration involving 20 to 100+ guests.
3. You have your heart set on putting your money toward certain wedding details and experiences: Wedding planning is a very personal experience because you can choose to plan your wedding as you see fit. Perhaps having a traditional wedding with several guests means that you have to limit your budget in other areas that you simply don't want to to make compromises in. If that's the case, an elopement might be the best option for you. Either way, what you should keep in mind is that just because your elopement may not have all the bells and whistles of a grand celebration, this is still a special day in your lives together. So don't skimp on getting that gorgeous dress you've always had your eye on and that beautiful bouquet of flowers. Make sure to still invest in a good photographer and/or videographer -- your family and friends will love that you've still captured the day in a way that they can still share in the experience. Having beautiful photos and video will also mean so much more when you can share them with your future children. And if you opt for an elopement, you can also put the money you've saved into other experiences -- for example, getting PADI certified, going on a dive trip, taking a catamaran ride with your small circle, taking a helicopter ride over a surreal location or an extended honeymoon to some epic location. Or maybe it allows you to splurge and book a few days at an amazing resort you otherwise couldn't afford or perhaps those gorgeous overwater bungalows in Mexico! When you opt to elope, you will find yourself with more flexibility in terms of experiences and budget -- so enjoy it!
4. You're Prepared to Deal With a Strong Reaction from Others: When news spreads that you've eloped, you have to be prepared for strong reactions from family or friends -- some of which may be surprising. While people may share your joy, there will be others who may express disappointment or anger that they were not invited to the festivities. You have to be strong and confident with your decision and be willing to deal with whatever responses may get thrown your way. It's OK, just be prepared to deal with unexpected reactions. (Tip: #5 might help alleviate any disappointment!)
5. You'd rather plan a Post-I Do Party: Once you've spread the word, consider hosting a party to celebrate your union at home. This will still give you a chance to share your joy with the ones you love and friends who are dear and near, but don't feel obligated to make it "a wedding." You can do something elaborate if you'd like to make it a simple dinner gathering. It's up to you if you want to go big or small.
Whether you're dealing with a tighter wedding budget or feel intimidated by the thought of planning a large wedding, a destination elopement is something to consider these days. It allows you and your sweetheart to better focus on the sentiment of saying I Do. You just have to ask yourself, is it right for you?
To book or inquire about a location for a destination wedding elopement or wedding, contact one of the Best Destination Wedding travel agents who specialize in destination wedding and honeymoon travel. You can contact them HERE! or visit the website at www.wrighttravelagency.com
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About me: I am a former BDW Bride AKA as MarieSam and I was addicted to this forum as I planned my own wedding in 2009. Since 2010, I have been the proud owner of MarieSam Sanchez Photography -- a husband and wife photography team based in Southern California and documenting love all over the world. I am also a mother to two girls, an avid traveler and a destination wedding writer/blogger.