Friday, December 26, 2008

5 Things you need to know before you plan your wedding

1) Destination Weddings usually cost less than traditional weddings.
Destination weddings in the past were reserved for only the rich and famous, but in recent years they have become much more accessible to couples on a tighter budget looking to add an exotic flavor to their special day. If properly planned, you can save upwards of $20,000 off the cost of a traditional wedding, another benefit your wedding, it can become an unforgettable "mini vacation" for you and your guests.
2) You need to purchase Air & Hotel as a "Package"-or you could be in for an expensive surprise.
Although it is sometimes possible to negotiate with the hotel and airlines separately, you will generally be able to save more money booking the two as a package. We've talked with several brides throughout the years and have found those who have negotiated a good rate with the hotel find out they were unable to find an affordable airfare.
3) Destination Weddings can be a fun and relaxing experience for you and your guests-but only if you plan together.
Most couples we've worked with throughout the years, have said that making the accommodation arrangements for their guest has been just as important as all of the other wedding plans. When guests are let to fend for themselves, it is difficult to make sure guests get plans that are convenient, affordable and "close to where the action is." Even worse, without an experienced travel professional with an appropriate level of buying power on their side, couples and their guests are often talked into accepting "group rates" when the individual rates would have been better.
4) "Negotiate" directly with hotels at your own risks.
Hotels will often give some form of a discount for groups of 10 or more if you book directly, it is important to keep in the back of your mind that hotels are in the business to maximize their revenue on the rooms they book, having said that, working with an experienced travel coordinator, you will not only receive a better rate for you and your guest, you will also avoid the costly mistake mentioned in #2.
5) You can do it all yourself-But is it worth the risk?
Planned correctly, a destination wedding can truly be the wedding of your dreams. Unfortunately, we have heard of quite a few horror stories over the years from brides and grooms who chose to plan their wedding entirely on their own. Missed flights with no emergency numbers for support, hidden clauses in hotel contracts, leaving the couple with enormous financial liability, reservations being dropped by the hotel, forcing couples and their guests into a "2 star hotel in paradise." You name it, we've heard it.

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