Wedding planning is all about logistics. While there are many articles on the internet that address many common sense planning options, here are two tips that should be addressed immediately before committing to a destination wedding.
MAKING IT LEGAL
For many, marriage can be a legal name change, a new passport, a marriage penalty tax, and even a pathway to citizenship. Because marriage involves the government, in some states or countries, making your marriage legal may become your largest concern. For example, if you were to have a civil marriage in England, meaning a marriage outside of the church, you would need to post a public announcement of your intentions for fifteen days before your ceremony date. This would greatly extend the length of your stay in England, therefore increasing your wedding budget a bit more. On the other hand, in the State of Hawaii, you will not have to wait one second to get married after you obtain your marriage license from the Department of Health.
Wherever your wedding ambitions may carry you, make sure you completely understand the legal procedures of getting married of that given destination. More so, it is also important to understand if there are any legal consequences that would arise from getting married out of your hometown. For instance, if a bride were from the United States and the groom were from the UK, and the groom traveled frequently out of the country for work, how would a legal marriage in Hawaii affect his passport status and his work if he were to apply for citizenship in the United States? Could Hawaii process the marriage license fast enough for his new passport to be processed? I honestly don't know the answer. But, an immigration lawyer sure would. So in this case, consulting an immigration lawyer for advice may serve that couple well.
In most cases, making a destination wedding ceremony a legal marriage is quick and painless. Because the wedding industry contributes a great amount of money to the local economy, most states, cities, towns, and countries have streamlined the process. For the most part, making a marriage legal only becomes a larger concern when either the bride or groom has to deal with immigration issues, or when a couple gets legally married out of their home country.
Do not forget, if things get too complicated, you also have the option of legally getting married in your home town, then traveling to your destination to conduct the ceremony.
IT'S ALL ABOUT LOCATION
Choosing the right location for your wedding is much more than just an aesthetic choice, it's a choice that must be logistically functional. For most destination couples, many will not get the chance to visit the location of your wedding until the day of their ceremony. If you plan to spend a pretty penny for your wedding, and you can afford to do so, I suggest that you pay a visit to your wedding location to check everything out. If visiting the location of your wedding is out of your budget, then much of your research must be done via the web. But don't panic, finding a great location via the web is very plausible.
There are three rules when choosing a great location for your wedding and they are as follows:
1. IS IT POSSIBLE? –
This is the first big question you must ask yourself before committing to a location? Is it possible for you and your fiancé to get married there? There are churches that only accept church members who have gone through an extensive religious protocol. There are beautiful estates that don't allow weddings. There are beaches that you just can't get married on. And then there are just some locations that are not available, as they are already booked. Do not start dreaming or planning until you know what is possible.
2. LET THE BACKGROUND DICTATE THE FOREGROUND –
It's one of the golden rules in photography, but also the golden rule to location scouting. Your wedding ceremony is the foreground; now, check out the background. Is it busy? Are there any opportunities for it to get busy?
For example, a couple decided to get married at a private estate that overlooked a beautiful empty lake. They visited the lake on a weekday and it looked empty, peaceful, and awesome. But little did they know that on weekends, which was they day of their wedding, it became a very popular water ski destination. Because they didn't let the background dictate their foreground, they got a lot of party-going teenagers in many of their ceremony pictures.
3. LOOK WITH YOUR EARS –
A location may look great on camera, but just how well does it sound? In many cases, especially with hotel venues, a ceremony location may photograph well, but it may not sound well. Sometimes, right around the corner of your venue is a pool where families and kids play very loudly. And then there are times when a hotel wedding venue can be disturbed by some noises coming from the hotel rooms directly above. Acoustic problems are not limited to hotel venues, but many outdoor locations as well. Beaches are notorious for being very windy, making videotaping of your vows close to impossible.
The easiest way to look with your ears is by looking at amateur wedding videos on YouTube. This will give you a good idea if there are any distracting sounds that may happen during your wedding. Simply conduct a simple search of the name of your venue and see what pops up.
If you remember to look with your ears, you'll do just fine.
The real quick fix to the logistical nightmare a destination wedding may pose is a professional destination wedding planner. In PART TWO of my article on logistics, I'll address finding the perfect wedding planning.
My name is Steve Young, and I’m a former screenwriter, television producer turned wedding planner. To date, I have planned over 3000 weddings making me some type of wedding-guru. My wedding company can be found at http://www.dreamweddingshawaii.com.
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