Destination Weddings Have Doubled in the Past Ten Years

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Brides.com examines hot new trend, and offers expert advice on the planning process.

Brides.com recognizes that even the most sacred of ceremonies can change with the times and the bride and groom’s wishes. In the last 10 years, the number of weddings away has doubled. With the advent of the Internet and the rise of the passport traveling class, more couples today are discovering how easy, affordable and romantic it is to get married against an exotic backdrop. Destination weddings have more than doubled in the past ten years and in 3 years the average number of guests have risen twenty percent from 46 guests to 56.

72 % of destination vows happen in the United States while the most popular locations to marry are Hawaii, Mexico, and on Cruises. Some Up-and-comers include Greece, Scotland, Italy, Fiji, South Africa, Thailand, Belize, Costa Rica and Canada.

Brides wants your special day to be memorable and offers expert advice on the entire planning process. Brides.com has compiled a checklist of details that deserve special attention to ensure a snag-free celebration on the beach including:

Start early - You’ll want to give your guests’ at least six months notice to make travel arrangements and schedule vacation time. And many prime dates (July 4) and sites (on the beach at sunset) get booked.

Consider the costs to your guests - While a destination wedding may save you money, some of your friends and family may not be able to afford an airfare plus three nights in a posh resort. Call the airlines to request ticket discounts for your wedding guests; arrange a reduced rate at the hotel where you’re staying; and make sure to research a few expensive lodging options, as well.

Timing and Weather - It may seem obvious, but make sure you select a month with the most consistent, good weather.

Plan - You’ll want to give your guests’ at least six months notice to make travel arrangements and schedule vacation time. And many prime dates (July 4) and sites (on the beach at sunset) get booked. Make sure you know all of the routes to the wedding location, and be sure you provide directions from nearby airports and train stations. Also make sure you arrange for parking. Finally, make sure you have clear signs pointing out the wedding location, and use signs that won't blow away.

Choose your site, then choose attire. Be sure to let your guests know about appropriate attire, for both your tastes and the environment. If elegantly relaxed, but not too casual is your desire, tip guests off and include the dress code on the invitation. Don't wear an elaborate wedding dress - keep it simple. If you wear a veil, make sure it's got something to hold it down in a beachside breeze. The groom can wear a white dinner jacket or even khakis and a blazer.

Lastly, don't forget the sunscreen. You want that healthy glow to be your happiness, not a sunburn.

Read more about destination weddings: Please visit http://www.brides.com/reception/article/?wr_seaside0503.html for the complete article and brides.com for your guide to destination wedding planning.

Brides.com is a leading online resource for wedding planning. The site offers expert advice about everything from wedding dresses and cakes to jewelry and etiquette. BRIDES magazine is the leading Bridal publication in America, published by the Fairchild Bridal Group.

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Beth Goode
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