Perfect Destination Wedding

I personally got married at a Karisma resort and would recommend it to anyone!  I’m so glad I found this article to help other brides in their wedding planning!

Five Can’t Miss Tips for the Perfect Destination Wedding

Destination & Tourism | Karisma Hotels & Resorts | Claudette Covey | November 19, 2013

Five Can't Miss Tips for the Perfect Destination Wedding

There’s virtually nothing more romantic than the thought of a destination wedding on a white sand beach overlooking the ocean.

Turning a destination wedding a reality, however, takes some planning. Following are five tips that will help toward ensuring that the experience is as idyllic as possible.

USE A TRAVEL AGENT

“This should be a stress free, positive journey,” said Faith Wishnie, director of wedding services at Karisma Hotels & Resorts, adding that a travel agent is able to take care of all the details that a bride and groom may not want to worry about. “If something goes wrong on the travel end your travel provider is going to be the one who will be there for you.”

Furthermore, informed travel agents have seen many of the properties themselves, and have forged relationships with on-site property personnel, enabling them to cut through red tape to ensure that things get done.

“We’ve made the connections at the destinations to make that moment a little more special,” said Jennifer Waldron of Big Sky Travel Source in Oklahoma City.

Because of preferred supplier agreements, agents are often able to obtain better rates as well. “We can find the same or better price,” said Waldron, “and we can surprise the bride and groom with upgrades and bottles of champagne.”

SET A BUDGET

The budget will establish how many people will actually attend the wedding, said Steve Bico of Lakeview Canada & Worldwide Cruises in Ontario. He noted that destination weddings have a dropout rate of 40 percent to 60 percent, a fact that couples should be prepared for.

The budget will also establish where you go, said Waldron. “If you have $3,000 but you want to go to Tahiti that’s not going to happen,” she said, adding that a budget of that size is more suitable to Jamaica. “Find out what your guests can afford.”

START PLANNING 1 1/2 YEARS OUT

It’s important to start planning early, said agents, particularly in order to nail down the desired wedding date at the resort. It’s not always easy to get the desired dates – so planning ahead will ensure that the couple will get the room blocks and services they require.

“Some resorts are very popular,” said Michelle Bouzec of Vacations in Paradise of Austin, Tex. “If you don’t block the dates and the rooms in time you’ll miss out.”

MAKE SURE PROPERTY HAS PROPER STAFFING

“Look for a product that specializes or has a major presence in doing weddings,” said Wishnie, adding that couples have to remember that they’re planning weddings in remote locations. “You have to make sure that you’re putting the most valuable day of your life in the hands of people who know how to perform weddings,” she said.

KEEP IT SIMPLE

Don’t over plan activities for your guests – remember it’s a vacation for them as well, said Jackie Waechter of Blissful Honeymoons and Destination Weddings.  “It’s a vacation for them as well,” she said. “Just have a few options available – whether it’s relaxing on the beach or ziplining through the jungle.”

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