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Tania is currently the Founder & Editor-in-Chief of The Hudsucker, and Senior Editor at the Nashville, Tennessee based PopCulture.com. With past writing and editing credits with Womanista, Quietly, the International Women's Media Foundation (IWMF) and NBC Newsvine, she is currently a member of Indianapolis based, Society of Professional Journalists — one of the oldest organizations in the U.S. that promotes and represents journalists. She is an avid Indianapolis Colts, Elvis Presley and baseball fan as well as a lover of pancakes and fine cheeses, film, and music. Tania is a Hoosier at heart with a passionate wanderlust for always traveling and giving back to those in her community. She is currently studying at Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana. Follow Tania on Twitter: @westlifebunny.

7 Tips to Consider When Planning a Destination Wedding

{Image Credit: iStock}

Destination weddings not only combine the charm and excitement reminiscent of a sunny vacation, but they’re also a lot more fun than say, drinking piña coladas in the boonies.

There’s been an upswing in this particular wedding trend with many couples abandoning the traditional, fancy church in favor of nuptials amid a more exotic and warm locale. According to a 2014 study by The Knot, destination weddings make up 24 percent of the 2.4 million American weddings that take place every year.

Can you blame them? From faraway places filled with sun and sand or hilltops even the von Trapp family would be jealous of, there’s a colorful location for every venturesome bride and groom.

Make it memorable 

Your destination wedding can creatively reflect the style of you and your soulmate. Whether you choose to say “I do” oceanside in the U.S. or somewhere exotic overseas, you will be creating not just a memorable and unique experience for your own life, but for guests too. It can be religious, traditional or any style you desire, but the destination will provide a built-in accent to whatever style you choose for your perfect day.

Plan with less stress

The lack of control can leave some brides worried, but destination weddings actually make it super easy and stress-free for couples. Just imagine Jennifer Lopez in The Wedding Planner, but even better. Because most resorts and hotels have on-site wedding coordinators to help you plan for the best day ever, they work very hard and bend over backwards to make sure your needs are met. Whether it’s the ceremony, reception or even catering, destination planners understand your concerns and will help ease your last-minute anxieties.

Take advantage of complete packages

Tourism boards and resorts offer package deals that come with complimentary services like on-site wedding consultants who take care of the marriage license, cake, the minister and photography. They can also help you plan week-long events and activities with group discounts for shopping, sports, spas and more.

Enjoy dream affordability

The budget friendly wedding — yes, it is possible! Combining the wedding, the honeymoon and an intimate guest list allows you to expand your budget for design and style. Your destination wedding could cost anywhere between $10,000 and $12,000. If you want to save more, take advantage of a wedding preview trip. Many resorts and hotels understand couples prefer to see locations up close, sample menu options, and meet wedding staff before signing and might offer special reduced rates.

Build an intimate guest list

Don’t feel forced to invite that co-worker you don’t really know or that uncle who always causes a scene. Since destination weddings are more intimate with an average of 40-50 guests invited, welcoming your closest friends and family keeps it romantic and simple, especially since you will be spending days leading up to the ceremony with them. Sure, some guests will not make the trip or feel hurt that they were not invited, but focus on the needs of you and your fiancé and work from there.

Create picturesque memories

We can see it now — your wedding photo album featuring gorgeous locales straight out of a magazine. With photographs that showcase incredible lighting, composition and scenery out of a dream, you’ll have memories for years to come and look back fondly with your true love. While resorts and hotels offer photography packages, with the money saved you can even bring along one of your favorite photographers to capture the day.

Start the honeymoon early

You don’t deserve to spend your honeymoon in some roadside inn close to home or to stress yourself out by heading to the airport after drinking and partying it up at your vibrant reception. Instead, have the trip of a lifetime in a glamorous location and start your honeymoon earlier than expected. Best of all, it can turn into the perfect excuse to return for your anniversaries.

What are some tips you think bride and grooms-to-be should consider? Share with us in the comments below.

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