A destination wedding is no easy feat, particularly if you're without a black book of already trusted contacts. The trust factor seems to be the biggest risk for clients seeking to celebrate abroad, particularly when it comes to photography.
Of course the perfect overseas location can make for some of the most memorable and unique weddings for you and your guests, but what we've learnt from our clients is homework is essential to avoid the shonksters and scammers preying on international brides and grooms.
We spoke with some of our recent clients who chose incredible destinations for their big day to get their top tips on how to plan the perfect destination affair...
The venue, catering and photography hold the highest risks with hefty deposits being required up front to secure availability. We spoke with destination wedding clients like Carly and have these simple 5 tips to avoid being scammed or having your big day impacted by questionable vendors!
1. Venues - trip advisor and Instagram hashtags need to be your best friend on this one. Websites and professional images of venue spaces can be incredibly misleading, so ensure you check other channels to get real client photos of their experience with the space so you're not dealing with false expectations.
2. Catering - vendors in this space have more flexibility with the deadline on deposits, so don't be fooled or pushed into a rushed decision. They have more capacity to cater for multiple events, and are absolutely negotiable by changing menu preferences.
3. Hair and Make Up - client testimonials are everything when it comes to finding your ideal vendor. For destination affairs where reliability is incredibly important, make sure you look out for testimonials about their service and timeliness. Language differences can sometimes present international brides with issues when dealing with these professionals, so best tip is to have a pinterest account or image samples of what you're after to refer to.
4. Florist - the cost difference for florists globally is huge. Some clients have been mislead by dealing with florists who cater for the 'international bride' or destination wedding market. Do your research on this part of the industry, and whilst it could be more effort finding a local florist directly, it could save you some budget!
5. Photography - trust and credibility are the biggest risks when it comes to this profession. Travelshoot personally has a 20% rejection rate when we test new photographers and the scary thing with this is some of the photographers have the most BEAUTIFUL website and portfolio, but when we test them, it's a different story. Technical photography skill is of course important, but ensuring they are reliable and will not miss your big day is just as critical - so client reviews is essential.