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Moderate destination wedding #23331
10/27/2013 01:27 PM
10/27/2013 01:27 PM
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 246
Upstate New York / Southern Ad...
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silkey Offline OP
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silkey  Offline OP
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Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 246
Upstate New York / Southern Ad...
Searching for some help choosing a moderately priced destination wedding for our son. They were thinking of maybe the Bahamas, but are open to any suggestions. Any input would be greatly appreciated. Looking for sometime during the winter of 2014. Thanks again for any help!

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Re: Moderate destination wedding [Re: silkey] #23332
10/27/2013 02:23 PM
10/27/2013 02:23 PM
Joined: Feb 2006
Posts: 928
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Fletch Offline
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Fletch  Offline
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For anyone to be of help, you have to define what "moderately priced" means to you.

Also, are you just concerned with room costs or does the cost of airfares enter into tour budget equation? If so, where will you and your guests be flying from?

FYI - much of the Bahamas could be cool or even cold during the winter so those islands may not be the best choice if the you and your guests are looking to do beach related activities.

For what it is worth, start by looking at resorts in the Dominican Republic, Cancun, Playa del Carmen and Jamaica as those destinations are amount the most budget friendly in the Caribbean and will give you the best opportunity to find places that might meet your definition of "moderately priced". Avoid islands like Anguilla, St, Barth's, the Turks & Caicos, Grand Cayman and St. John as they are among the most expensive destinations in the Caribbean.

Last edited by Fletch; 10/27/2013 02:24 PM.
Re: Moderate destination wedding [Re: Fletch] #23333
10/27/2013 05:35 PM
10/27/2013 05:35 PM
Joined: Feb 2008
Posts: 588
Las Vegas, NV, USA
Ellen777 Offline
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Ellen777  Offline
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Las Vegas, NV, USA
All good advice from Fletch - I can recommend Le Blanc in Cancun, I know two people who have had weddings there and still rave about it. Whatever you do, do not pick a destination that is cost prohibitive or hard to get to for your guests, also, do not pick a place you will not be able to return due to cost/difficulty of travel - I have friends/relatives who got married in Bali and we could not join them due to travel time.
Good luck,
Ellen


Life's a beach
Re: Moderate destination wedding [Re: Ellen777] #23334
10/27/2013 09:50 PM
10/27/2013 09:50 PM
Joined: Apr 2002
Posts: 3,455
Virginia wishing STJ
TomB Offline
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TomB  Offline
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Virginia wishing STJ
I am going to recommend Puerto Rico. Airfare reasonable from most US cities.

The major hotels have wedding packages. Partial to El San Juan

Bride and Groom slip off to the Spanish Virgins for honeymoon. Guest fly home

<img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/circle.gif" alt="" />


“Every time I open a bottle of wine, it is an amazing trip somewhere!” José Andrés
Re: Moderate destination wedding [Re: silkey] #23335
10/28/2013 10:24 AM
10/28/2013 10:24 AM
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 82,933
Central Florida!
Carol_Hill Offline
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Carol_Hill  Offline
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Definitely NOT the Bahamas in the winter, as it could be quite chilly. Frankly, you'd be as well to consider somewhere in south Florida as the Bahamas, as the temperatures are about the same in winter. By the way, when you say "destination wedding", are family members going to be attending? If so, maybe Florida would be the best bet for a moderately priced wedding. If family members are NOT going to be coming, or only a very few, I would probably recommend Jamaica or the DR. But suggest you check out airfare options from where to you and see what the best destinations are, in terms of price and schedule from where you are and definitely take that into consideration.


Carol Hill
Re: Moderate destination wedding [Re: Carol_Hill] #23336
10/28/2013 12:23 PM
10/28/2013 12:23 PM
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 14,653
Brookfield, CT.
pat Offline
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pat  Offline
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Regarding destination weddings, great advice, Carol - all of it. They can impose a major burden on family and friends who would love to be a part of the special day and who might have to forego the privilege based on the destination chosen.

That said, a few years back we attended a destination wedding in September or October in the Bahamas. It was beautifully done by the bride and the groom - no details were skipped and there were about eighty guests, and you knew these were the people who really wanted to be a part of the event. The only drawback was everyone worried about the possibility of 'weather' interfering with the big day. As luck would have it, all was perfect. They did have a back up plan - otherwise - it might have been a bit of a disaster had a hurricane decided to attend as well.

While we were attending this wedding we saw a few other ones take place and truthfully, they were rather sad in that the brides and grooms went to all the trouble of a photographer and gowns but there were almost no attendees - no walk down the aisle to the perfect beach sunset setting; no pre-wedding parties and no big reception with all the trimmings - band, cocktail hour, etc.

If I'm remembering correctly, the one we attended was held at the Radisson and the bride and groom had the typical rehersal dinner the night before, inviting all the guests in attendance, and then the ceremony on the beach followed by a white glove cocktail hour and eventually a sit down dinner reception and then the wonderful craziness you might expect from a group of their ages. The next morning there was a formal brunch for all the guests before the bride and groom took off for their honeymoon, also in the Bahamas, but at one of the Sandals Resorts.

This wedding still stands out in my mind as one of the nicest I've taken part in but there was a lot of thought and consideration put into it and it seems to me they made at least three trips to the Radisson in the course of making all their plans. In the end, it was a wonderful wedding and one few of us will ever forget.

In the end, I don't know that this would be taken as a moderately priced wedding or not, but had the couple held it in NYC where they were both living and working, the guest list would have been about 300 instead of a hundred and the other wedding expenses would have been costly, too, so from that perspective it was definitely a moderately priced wedding, if only in size. <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/handshake.gif" alt="" /> <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/handshake.gif" alt="" />


Respectfully,

pat



"Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat
them."
Re: Moderate destination wedding [Re: pat] #23337
10/28/2013 12:31 PM
10/28/2013 12:31 PM
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 82,933
Central Florida!
Carol_Hill Offline
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Carol_Hill  Offline
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Posts: 82,933
Central Florida!
Pat--I didn't think about how somewhat sad it would be to have your BIG DAY and no one be there to watch it. If it's a second marriage, it's one thing, but for the first big go-round, you should have at least a moderate number of people. To me, personally, I think it's quite an imposition to expect a lot of people to be able to travel out of the country for the wedding, in terms of money, vacation time, possibly having to get a passport, etc. Now, if it is only a very small wedding party, that's different, but again, as you said, it would seem kind of sad to have only a couple of people there, to ME personally.


Carol Hill
Re: Moderate destination wedding [Re: Carol_Hill] #23338
10/28/2013 12:52 PM
10/28/2013 12:52 PM
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 14,653
Brookfield, CT.
pat Offline
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pat  Offline
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This was a first wedding and our bride and groom more or less polled their friends and family in advance of the decisions being made and the invitations going out. Once the choice was made they only invited immediate family and extremely close and long-time friends with personal notes to all 'that as much as they would like to have them there, they understood that in all cases it might not be possible and they would look forward to celebrating the event at home with them after the fact'.

And as I said, had they done the wedding in NYC - they could NOT have gotten away with doing it this way as there would have been business associates and co-workers to be invited and the list just goes on and on and still the expense of staying in the City and all.

I do agree that destination weddings can be a very costly imposition on friends and family but most couples go into it knowing they have to accept and understand that many who would otherwise wish to attend might not be able to do so.

And the young weddings we witnessed that happened during the weekend we were there for our bride and groom were genuinely sad affairs. In one case there were only the bride and groom and two sets of parents - but I'm sure this is what the couple wanted and no criticism here, but we did feel a little sad for them when we were all having such a great time at our wedding.

When it comes to second marriages, personally speaking, it's a whole different ball game and whatever works is good.


Respectfully,

pat



"Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat
them."
Re: Moderate destination wedding [Re: silkey] #23339
10/28/2013 12:58 PM
10/28/2013 12:58 PM
Joined: Apr 2012
Posts: 209
Maryland
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ScottW Offline
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Maryland
My daughter was married in 2009 at Ocean Club West in Turks and Caicos. We had about 45 guests. Sunset sail and dinner for all the guests the night before the wedding. Beach wedding with the reception at the resort.

My son liked it so much, we had another 45 people for his wedding in 2011 at the same place.

It is not inexpensive per person, but as someone else commented, we would have had 250 people at a traditional wedding at home.

I will admit that there were some hard feelings regarding some family who were not able to attend (finances, limited time off work, etc.)

We went for 2 weeks and both of the weddings were vacations I will always cherish. Everyone had a fabulous time.

Re: Moderate destination wedding [Re: ScottW] #23340
10/30/2013 06:41 PM
10/30/2013 06:41 PM
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 2,666
MIA
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irina Offline
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irina  Offline
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Cancun is very reasonable and can be barefoot elegant to full on posh.
Easy to fly to and usually really inexpensive packages available.
Cheers
irina

Re: Moderate destination wedding [Re: silkey] #23341
11/17/2013 11:11 PM
11/17/2013 11:11 PM
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 621
FL
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Emily Offline
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Emily  Offline
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FL
First of all: Congratulations!!

And ditto to much of what Scott said.

Our daughter got married at Grace Bay Club, Turks & Caicos this past summer (it was very warm!). She had been involved in several friend's weddings over the last couple of years and spent huge sums of money on parties, clothes, shoes, travel, etc. (Most were over-the-top, including bachelorette weekends.) She simply wanted the immediate families & their closest friends to have a memorable vacation weekend. And to be married in beautiful locale. (Not interested in traditional wedding party, luncheons, etc..)

She did a tremendous amount of research and narrowed it down to places that could be reached in shortest amount of time and money. She would've loved to go to BVI, Anguilla, Antigua, St. Martin, or Nevis. But Bahamas, T&C, DR, Jamaica, Mexico were among the more reasonable choices. Many resorts have cost estimates available online. If not, she emailed for quotes & all responded quickly. When she narrowed it down further, we made a weekend trip down to take a look. She fell in love with Grace Bay and the wedding coordinator there. We were pleasantly surprised that it fell within our budget.

We had 42 guests (no bridesmaids/wedding party). The resort offered block rates and an incredible breakfast buffet each day. A few of the younger guests who could not afford the resort (even with block rates) stayed across the street at another, more affordable inn.

We did set a budget and stuck to it. Don't know if it was moderate or not - it was what we could afford and agreed was reasonable. We told her that SHE would have to pay for any overages. My guess is that we spent same or less than we would have at home. If we had stayed home, it would have quickly gotten out of control. The resort did a fantastic job taking care of every detail within the budget we gave them. Everyone loved it. We had a wonderful week, with people who are closest to us, made memories to last a lifetime, and have no regrets at all.

It's all about the bride's wishes. I'm so glad ours went for the destination!! Whatever you decide, relax and enjoy - it's all over so quickly!!! <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/circle.gif" alt="" />


One other note: it is NOT too soon to start! We started the research 10-11 months in advance and many weekends at some of the more popular resorts were already taken. Someone gave her a book about Destination weddings from 'The Knot' that was a big help too. GOOD LUCK!


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