Every wedding comes with its own set of challenges. There are so many details that must be planned and you always want to temper the traditional with your own personal flair. It would be nice if you were able to magically know what to do in every situation, but unless you are a wedding planner who deals with these things on a regular basis, your wedding planning can quickly turn into a highly stressful experience.
However, a wedding planner or not, there are some things you won’t be able to ignore. Knowing these essential details well in advance can help you to save many of the hurdles you’re going to face along the way. By following the tips we have compiled below, you’ve got a good chance of getting your planning off to a good start.
It is your responsibility to get a marriage license. While your wedding may be set for a certain date, you should have your papers ready to sign before the ceremony. If you want this special day to be memorable then don’t forget to tackle this legal issue ahead of time. This way, they won’t put a damper on your special event.
Decide on the Guest List First
Yes, this is your special day and you want it to be absolutely perfect. By deciding on the guest list first, you will know exactly how many people will be attending so you can arrange for ample space for everyone to be comfortable. The general guideline to aim for is a minimum of 25 square feet per guest. This will give you enough space for all the activities you will have, including dancing.
Give Your Guests Plenty of Time to Prepare
If you’re planning a formal event or a destination wedding, your guests need to receive their invitations well enough in advance that they can prepare. They may need to rent tuxedos or other formal attire from places like Generation Tux or out of town guests may need to purchase tickets well enough in advance to get favorable deals. Sending your invitations out early can be an act of love and make it possible for more people to attend.
Make Sure Everyone Knows Where to Go
It would be helpful to have printed directions to both your ceremony and reception so no one gets lost. Determine the best possible routes to take and if at all possible, offer several alternatives. You never know when there might be construction, an accident, or some other event that could send your guests off in the wrong direction.
Be Informed on Blackout Dates
Check the local community to make sure that you are aware of community events that may be happening on the same day. Every community has its own trade shows, conferences, sporting events, or charities that could affect traffic in your area or fill up hotels just when your out of town guests are arriving. Aim to set your date during a time when there is less activity in your area or encourage your guests to book rooms early to ensure they have a place to stay.
Plan For Inclement Weather
Pay attention to all weather reports, especially if you’re planning an outside wedding. Make sure that your venue will have adequate climate control or have an alternative setting if the weather turns bad. If you’re planning a sunset wedding, make sure you know when the sun will set that evening and time your vows to make sure everything is timed just right.
Keep Your Details Secret
It can be exciting to discuss the details of your wedding. After all, it is going to be a happy event and you want your friends and family to be a part of it. But, unless you want to hear the opinions of others about what you should or not do, it is best to keep these details a secret unless they are a part of the wedding party. Keeping things a secret is also a great way to keep the guests intrigued and entertained.
Take Advantage of Your Good Credit
Weddings are expensive and you need to be prepared financially. If you’re planning on using your credit, consider getting a special credit card that offers a nice rewards plan. By putting all your expenses on that one card you can accumulate airline miles, find great deals, or gain some other perks with the thousands of points you’re going to accumulate. This could lighten the financial burden for other expenses you’re going to have in the future.
Wedding vendors usually work within a tight circle of professionals. To cut down on the legwork involved in finding the right services you need to ask them to recommend other vendors you need. You might ask your photographer to suggest a florist or ask your caterer to recommend a good band. This can benefit you in several ways. In addition to cutting down on searching for the right mix of vendors, hiring from the same circle means that the vendors know each other, which simplifies communication and logistics so your wedding can go off with fewer bumps and surprises.
Don’t Forget The Crew
While you may not be required to do so, it is always good to provide food service for the crew that will be working at your wedding. You want your event to go smoothly and since most receptions can go well into the night, it can keep them from getting sluggish halfway through the evening. You don’t have to offer them the same meal as your guests but it needs to be hearty enough to sustain them for the duration but not so heavy that they will feel weighed down. It’s a good idea to determine this type of meal plan before you sign the contract.
Whatever you do, planning your wedding should be an exciting and thrilling time. It can be easy to get overwhelmed by all the things you have to do. However, be realistic in your expectations and don’t lose your perspective about the meaning of this very special occasion. As long as you keep sight of these facts, your wedding plans should come off with less stress so that your day will be full of many special memories you will enjoy well into the future.