Destination weddings can be planned for a number of reasons. Some people use them to keep costs down, others to remind them of a special location. Guest lists are always the best way to control your expenses when it comes to a wedding as each person comes with a price tag.
Current Average Cost
In general, the average destination wedding costs about $17,000 for 100 people as of July 2010 according to WeddingSolutions.com. That being said it all depends on how much you are paying for when it comes to your guests. As destination weddings usually include additional activities, often times the costs can increase from there.
Number of Guests
Some statistics that are rather interesting include the number of guests who attend destination weddings. While it does matter how many people you invite as well, the average number of attendees is 56. Of course this average is brought down significantly by those people who do a destination wedding with no one but themselves. All inclusive packages can come in from 45-60 Euros per person, or approximately $57-$76 per person, based on figures provided by Slow Dreams, a wedding planning firm that specializes in weddings in Italy. This price is for all reception fees including meal and wine. As you can see, this is where numbers can increase rapidly or fall dramatically based on your number of guests.
The Little Details
The transportation adds to the fees, but the all-inclusive nature of the resorts often helps keep the prices down at the reception. By planning a wedding from far away, it sometimes keeps the bride from getting caught up in tons of little extras that do not necessarily matter in the long run and end up just costing more money. When choosing where to stay, look into the inclusions, such a a room for two with breakfast included. These rooms can come in anywhere from 50-80 Euros per night, or $64-$102 USD per night when using the Slow Dreams package as an example. Also, reception venues that will take care of flowers for the centerpieces as part of the package will be the best option for you.
There are many places that offer special packages. By doing the package repetitively the organization can offer discounted rates as they know exactly what they will need. This also takes much of the worry out of planning. Packages can range from $75 per head, $7500 for a wedding of 100 to $200 per head, $20,000 for a wedding of a 100 in the “bargain” arena, according to packages by Italian Destination Weddings, a company that specializes in planning wedding and honeymoon packages in Italy. Much depends on how elaborate you would like the reception to be and if you are serving a full meal. These prices can also include your honeymoon.
High End Resorts
If you choose a higher end resort, the costs can increase. These locations usually charge more for their room rentals not only for accommodations but also for dinner, rehearsal, and even the ceremony location. Depending on your budget, you should consider what details you find most important. Is it an exotic location with natural beauty or do you prefer the luxury of a five-star resort. When getting married in a foreign land, many are often so impressed with the surroundings, you can keep costs at a minimum by not over embellishing.
Inviting Fewer People
When keeping your guest numbers down, do not assume because they are being asked to travel long distances that they will not be willing to come. It helps to be able to tell people you are limiting the numbers so you have a way around inviting work friends and others who might just be too many. Guests usually understand especially when you are marrying so far from home. But if someone is invited, you have to consider the fact they will choose to make their own vacation out of it. If they do that, you might find your numbers higher than expected, thereby adding to your costs.
The time of year dictates not only the cost of the wedding but the cost of traveling to the location. When going to Italy, airfare is usually less expensive in the spring and fall as it is not as popular a vacation time due to school schedules for children. Many of the online booking agencies will offer deals including hotel accommodations. Calling in advance to lock a price for guests, sometimes for as low as $449 USD per flight. This is based on flights found in July 2010 on 1-800-Fly Europe.
- Photo Credit landscapes series - garda lake Italy image by helenos from Fotolia.com
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