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One Year Before/ASAP:
• Choose a location, taking into consideration your wedding style and guest list.
• Send out save-the-date cards early, so guests can budget for travel/time off and get their passports ready.
• Call a tourism office for more destination-specific information.
• Make sure your paperwork is up-to-date and that you have all the documents needed (birth certificates, passports, travel visa, et c).
• Research the marriage requirements of the country (i.e. documents, public notices, and residency requirements).
• Consider a wedding package as a low-stress option. Services of a planner are often included, as are the services of local vendors.
• When hiring a wedding planner, find one who specializes in destination weddings or who is based in your destination location.
• Contact the relevant church or temple. If you’re planning a religious/cultural ceremony, be aware that some countries also require a civil ceremony to legalize the union.
• Consider the climate when choosing your gown.
• If it applies, get vaccinated (or make sure your vaccinations are current).
4 Months Before:
• Scout your location. Try to book a visit (or two) to see the venue, taste the menu and meet the vendors.
• Plan a few events for guests (i.e. a welcome party, day at the beach, golf tournament).
• Buy plane tickets
• Book accommodations.
• Book transportation for shuttling guests to and from the airport and to all wedding events.
• Inquire about group discounts for flights and hotels for guests.
8-10 Weeks Before:
• Send out formal invitations.
• Ask you planner to review your legal paperwork
• Order gifts and favors
2 Weeks Before:
• Let your bank know of your travel plans.
• Submit final head count to the venue.
• Make a plan for getting your wedding gifts home.
One Week Before:
• Take your dress as carry-on to ensure it doesn’t disappear if your checked baggage gets lost.
• Arrive early to finalize paperwork and iron out last-minute details.
• For some critical elements (photography, hair, makeup), you may want to fly in talent.