When it comes to planning your wedding, there are a million decisions you need to make – what kind of flowers will you have, what will your colour scheme be and where do you want to get married? If you’ve only just got engaged, you might not really have any idea what you or your partner want and you may be open to the idea of getting married in another country.
If COVID wasn’t a thing (and let’s be honest, we all wish it wasn’t), you could literally get married wherever you wanted. It could be Europe, America or even further afield than that. So with this in mind, should you get married abroad or in the UK?
Why get married abroad?
Getting married abroad can be just as magical as having a wedding in the UK. The weather is almost guaranteed to be beautiful and sunny and some countries have incredible scenery that make for stunning wedding photos. But this isn’t enough of a reason to have your wedding abroad, so why should you consider this option?
Sentimentality or memories
Some people love to have a wedding that’s memorable for them. Perhaps you and your partner met while you were on holiday or have some exceptional memories while abroad. It may even be that you got engaged while on holiday and want to return to that place to get married. If you have some sentimental memories of a particular place abroad, this would be a fab reason to get married there.
A smaller wedding
If you want a small, personal ceremony then a destination wedding could be the one for you. These types of weddings don’t tend to work if you want more than 50 guests as travel becomes an issue, as does expense. There may even be some moral issues – you wanted the wedding abroad so should your guests have to pay for their flights? What if some guests can’t afford to come? Destination weddings tend to be more expensive for your guests, but generally very close friends and family members will be willing to fork out the extra to see your big day.
Let’s be honest, the beaches in the UK aren’t exactly the best. While you may be lucky and get exceptional weather, you could also be very unlucky and end up getting married on a rainy beach in Cornwall. The beaches abroad can be more sandy, more beautiful and more warm, so if you’re adamant about having a beach wedding, consider getting married abroad.
Generally, you can organise a wedding abroad much faster than you can in the UK. This is because wedding suppliers get very booked up a long way in advance in the UK. Some couples can be engaged for over two years and may have booked their photographer or cake maker a long time ago. But getting married abroad means you can organise a wedding a little faster if you’d prefer to do it sooner.
How much does it cost to get married abroad?
According to research conducted by luxury travel agent Kuoni, the average cost of an abroad wedding is just £7,500 compared to the average in the UK of £32,000. Obviously the price of a destination wedding could shoot up the more guests you have and the Kuoni based their figures on the average of 10 to 15 guests.
This means that a wedding abroad is actually cheaper than one in the UK.
Why get married in the UK?
The UK certainly has lots to offer and there are tonnes of incredible venues all over the country if you would prefer to stray away from your local area or hometown.
You want a big wedding
A big wedding just isn’t feasible abroad as the cost would surely sky rocket. If you want a big wedding, you’re betting sticking to the UK and even your local area so people don’t have to travel too far. You can hire a venue such as a large hotel so that people can stay overnight in the venue. If you hire a marquee, ensure that there is sufficient accommodation locally.
You love your hometown
Some people couldn’t imagine getting married anywhere other than their hometown. Perhaps you want to get married in the same church as your parents or have had a local venue in mind since you got engaged. These are excellent reasons to get married in the UK.
Planning a wedding abroad can be far more stressful. Despite the fact that it costs less and you can organise a destination wedding faster, it’s much easier to organise a wedding in the UK. You don’t have to worry about how you’ll ship your dress over (and whether it’ll get lost), how all your guests will get there or how to organise a wedding in a foreign country with foreign suppliers. Generally, getting married abroad requires a wedding planner local to the area so they can help you out. You may also be required to travel to the venue for food tasting and other things, and this is much easier to do in the UK.
So, if you’re torn between getting married abroad or in the UK, hopefully these points will help you to make a decision.