Destination Wedding Logistics: Who Pays for What and How to Arrange Travel for Your Gown

Etiquette, Honeymoons & Destination Weddings
Destination Wedding Logistics Tips

Photo: KT Merry

As if wedding planning wasn't already complicated, planning a destination wedding tacks on a few added layers of logistics that can get tricky for any bride or groom-to-be.

Most sticky wedding planning aspect of all? Who pays for what—especially when you have friends and family throwing down a large sum to see you tie the knot in some foreign locale.

So, how do you sort out the costs?

You definitely want to pay for the rehearsal dinner and/or welcome bash for all the guests, not just the bridal party. You'll also want to cover the costs of the wedding (obviously), the day-after brunch (again, for all guests), and transportation to any wedding-related events.

Your guests, on the other hand, should shell out for their own flights. It's also appropriate to ask them to pay for their hotel room, though you should negotiate a group rate and room block for everyone, taking into account various budgets. Lastly, they'll need to cover their own incidentals. You're 100 percent not responsible if Uncle Phil racks up a $200 bar tab by the pool.

While your attendees should definitely cover their travel, stay, and incidentals, you might want to consider covering extras like your bridesmaids' hair and makeup—and maybe even their dresses. It's a nice gesture, since they're spending extra to travel. Another nice gesture? The groomsmen's gear if it's not something they'd wear again and an excursion for all the guests or even just the bridal party. Sailing or snorkeling is a cool way for both sides to mingle.

Lastly, the most important logistic to coordinate is how to get the gorgeous wedding gown you purchased across state—even national!—lines!

"Hand-carry your dress on the plane. Do not check it or send it ahead. I've seen gowns damaged, lost, or held up in customs for weeks," says New York City-based planner Karen Bussen. Ask flight attendants to hang your garment bag in first class. After the I do's, have a trusted bridesmaid bring your gown home so you won't have to deal on your honeymoon.

—Sarah Z. Wexler

You Might Also Like:
The Most Heart-Stopping Destination Wedding Locations
Wedding Dresses for a Destination Wedding
Wedding Etiquette Tips: Destination Wedding

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