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10 reasons to pack your bags and have a destination wedding

A destination wedding. If the mere mention of exchanging vows interstate or abroad has thoughts of astronomical costs, logistical nightmares and amped-up stress running through your mind, get ready to think again. We’ve dusted off our mythbusting cap and have set our sights on banishing some common misconceptions about destination weddings. Excited? So are we. Put simply, there’s not much we don’t love about destination weddings. And we have a feeling that after reading our top ten reasons why a destination do is always a good idea, you’ll love them too.  

1. It won’t bust your budget

Forget scrounging under couch cushions and shaking that piggy bank to pay for your nuptials. A destination wedding isn’t as expensive as you think. In 2010, the average cost for a wedding with 100 guests in Australia was $60 000; the cost in Bali or Thailand was between $10 000 and $20 000. Sound appealing? We thought so. But wait, there’s more: hotels and resorts offer wedding packages that include decorations, flowers, food and wine, which not only helps to reduce costs but leaves you to recline on a sunlounger (or hammock) in the days leading up to saying ‘I do.’

2. The world is your oyster

Dreaming of a destination wedding in a French chateau? Perhaps you fancy a ceremony on the white-sand beaches of the Whitsundays, or a vineyard-toting villa in Tuscany. You can tie the knot almost anywhere that strikes your fancy – we’d strike Antarctica or the depths of the Amazon off that list. When planning your destination wedding, think about a location that is special to you as a couple – it might be on both your bucketlists, or the city where you met – and go there. Or, reach for your nearest atlas (or Google Earth), close your eyes and point. 

3. Two birds with one stone

There’s no rushing to the airport, fear of forgetting your passport or missing that flight to your honeymoon with a destination wedding. For many couples, the location of their destination nuptials is often where they want to honeymoon too. You’ll also be able to have more time with friends and family before and after the big day. Opt for a resort or hotel that has a smattering of activities that will keep your guests occupied. Plus, most resorts offer packages, upgrades and exclusive offers for brides and grooms – which means your honeymoon starts as soon as you hit the lobby.  

4. Time with nearest and dearest

Weddings go by in a flash. The day is packed with taking photos, mingling with guests and squeezing in time to eat a meal. A destination wedding runs to a different schedule, and can span three to four days, or an entire week if you’re feeling particularly extravagant. That gives you upwards of 96 hours to talk, laugh, indulge and relax with friends and family. 

5. Meeting in the middle

What happens if you or your partner hail from across the world? Or you have family dotted around the globe? Before the debate of getting married either here or there becomes heated, take a moment and think destination. Taking your nuptials cross-country or cross-continents can simplify the process of bringing two groups of family and friends, and gives you major brownie points for your people-pleasing efforts. 

6. Leave the planning to the professionals

If the thought of finalising seating charts, table centrepieces, floral arrangements, approving menus and finding a celebrant has you in a flurry, fear not. Most resorts and hotels boast a wedding planning service so the only thing you’ll have to worry about is how many bikinis to pack. There are also a handful of Australian-based destination planners that take care of every detail from coordinating your guests’ accommodation to organising your marriage license. 

7. You’ll be bragging for years

We can’t think of anything more romantic or memorable than being in your favourite place with the people who mean the most to you. And you won’t only share your special day with them, but the memories, photographs and stories of the days you spent together will last in your memory – and theirs – forever. 

8. Sorry, this plane is full

What’s your guest list looking like? If it’s already choc-a-bloc with family and friends, including that creepy uncle, and now your mum is saying you have to invite her best friend’s best friend’s daughter, rest easy. Having a destination wedding is a great excuse to limit the guest list – meaning that those old neighbours you haven’t seen since you were nine or your groom’s (slightly) irritating workmates are given the invite heave-ho. 

9. Get grooms involved

Is your man excited about bouquets, seating arrangements and finding the just-right shade of pink for your bridesmaids’ dresses? Our guess: probably not. Chances are though, that he will get excited about the thought of travelling – and that includes travelling for your ‘I dos’. Country-hopping may not get him thrilled about charts and scrapbooks, so give him a hands-on job like organising fun group excursions or creating a signature cocktail for your reception.

10. It’s all about the flexibility

And no, we’re not talking about being able to do the splits (save that party trick for the wedding night). Having your wedding overseas means you aren’t restricted to having a Friday night or weekend do; if you want to have your nuptials on a Tuesday, you can – and, as a bonus, mid-week weddings are often cheaper. If you’re getting married in off-peak seasons, take advantage of airline sales and hotel discounts. 
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