Destination Wedding Checklist: Must-Read Planning Tips


destination-wedding-checklistIf you’ve decided on a destination wedding, prepare yourself for more planning than a local bride-to-be. While destination weddings are often more involved, the payoff can be huge. You’ll get plenty of unique memories and will be able to experience the destination with your friends, family and loved ones during one of the most exciting events of your life. Take a look at the substantial destination wedding checklist we’ve compiled to assist in planning the celebration of your lifetime:

9 Months-1 Year Before Your Destination Wedding

  • Decide on a formal or informal ceremony and if you want a large or small guest list.
  • Hire a wedding planner.
  • Structure your budget.
  • Choose a date.
  • Research and book the venue & destination resort that appeals to you.
    • If possible, arrange a short trip to check out desirable venues, resorts, local florists, food vendors, hair and makeup artists, etc.
    • Ask all vendors if they know wedding professionals with great reputations. If certain names keep coming up, check those vendors out. Many vendors fear speaking badly of others, but most are happy to tell you who is great.
    • Search the internet and reviews of different vendors.
    • Pick an experienced DJ or wedding band, like Wiley Entertainment, who will travel for your destination wedding. Popular bands book fast.
      • Ask to see us live at a local wedding or through online footage.
  • Assemble a guest list, and ensure you have mailing addresses for each of them.
  • Decide on members of your wedding party.
    • Give everyone a deadline to confirm their participation.
  • Begin shopping for your wedding dress and wedding rings.
    • Don’t forget your jewelry, shoes and hair accessories.

6-9 Months Before Your Destination Wedding

  • Appoint a wedding officiant.
  • Hire a wedding photographer.
  • Create a personalized website for your wedding.
    • Use the website to keep your guests updated of wedding details and to track RSVPs. There are plenty of free website templates out there for you to use!
  • Decide on floral arrangements.
  • Book the caterer, and design the menu for the reception.
  • Finalize the details of your wedding cake.
  • If you have not already, choose an experienced DJ or wedding band, like Wiley Entertainment, who will travel for your destination wedding.
    • Ask to see us live at a local wedding or through online footage.
  • Pay for your wedding gown and deposits to all your vendors.

4-6 Months Before Your Destination Wedding

  • Make flight reservations and pay for your tickets.
  • Secure your passports if traveling outside the country (for wedding or honeymoon)
  • Fulfill travel requirements, like blood tests or vaccines.
    • Update your website, and add a friendly reminder for your guests. For their convenience, provide them with links on the best deals for airplane tickets and hotel accommodations.
  • Design and pay for your wedding invitations.
  • Make ground transportation arrangements for the duration of the wedding celebration.
  • Get confirmation from the bridal party that the dresses have been ordered.
  • Discuss a playlist with the wedding band.
    • Communicate which songs are a must and if there are songs they should not play at all.

2-3 Months Before Your Destination Wedding

  • Confirm details in writing with your planner and all your wedding vendors.
  • Mail out the invitations.
  • Book your hairstylist and makeup artist.
  • Purchase your wedding party gifts.

The Month of Your Destination Wedding

  • Schedule your final wedding gown fitting.
    • Don’t forget to bring your accessories for a glimpse of the final look.
  • Arrange the delivery of your gown to your destination.
  • Begin packing and streamlining your wardrobe.
  • Write your wedding vows.
  • Confirm your guests have flight, hotel and ground transportation arrangements.
  • Reconfirm your flight, hotel accommodations and details with your wedding planner and vendors.
  • Construct a seating chart for the ceremony and place cards for the reception.
  • Create and order your wedding ceremony programs.
  • Apply for your marriage license.

The Week and Days Before Your Destination Wedding Checklist

  • Don’t forget the wedding rings!
  • Hold your wedding rehearsal.
  • Pass out your wedding party gifts.
  • Confirm the final details one last time with the wedding planner.
  • Get a manicure and pedicure a day or two before the wedding.

On the day of your wedding, don’t sweat the small things. It’s a special day, and you should focus on celebrating the new adventure you are about to share with the love of your life!

Wiley Entertainment, the best Palm Beach wedding band, can assist you in personalizing your destination wedding reception music, so contact us today!