A Destination Wedding Timeline

February 10, 2022
Words by Inspired By This
Photos courtesy of various

Planning a destination wedding can be chaotic at times. Use this expert-approved timeline the month before your destination wedding to help keep you organized and stress-free.

4 weeks before:

  • “Have your final gown fitting! Make sure to bring your shoes and accessories with you, so you can make sure the entire look is perfect before your big day.” – Sherene Hulugalle, Jasmine Vine
  • “Write your vows! Give yourself enough time to write out your vows and make sure you’re including everything you want to say. It’s always better to write these in advance so you’re not stressed to throw something together the week before!” – Afeisha James-Kipps, Wedspire
  • “I always recommend creating a spreadsheet for all of your RSVPs along with their arrival date, hotel and phone number, so you can keep everyone’s travel organized. Also, this is a great time to double check that the hotel reservations for your guests have been completed!” – Sherene Hulugalle, Jasmine Vine

3 weeks before:

  • “Depending on the location, you may need to send copies of your marriage license up to two weeks in advance. It sounds simple enough, but in the midst of packing, alterations and planning finalizations, it’s an easy step to miss. In terms of the wedding itself, it’s the most important one! “ – Lesley Smith, Ceremony App
  • “A few weeks before your wedding day, prepare a day-of shot list for your photographer. You’ll need to let them know all the family members that are coming and what groups you want photos of in advance.” – Afeisha James-Kipps, Wedspire

2 weeks before:

  • “Check the weather! About two weeks before, make sure the weather is agreeable. This gives your florist and venue enough lead time to figure out a backup plan.” – Euri Wong, Lead Designer at Bloominous
  • “About two weeks before, finalize the guest and bridal party count to make sure the numbers for centerpieces, boutonnieres/corsages and bouquets are correct. (This is also a great time to check with the MOB and MOG to match the flowers to their dresses and see if they should be wearing a pin-on or wrist corsage based on the material of the dress).” – Euri Wong, Lead Designer at Bloominous
  • “Welcome bags are a special touch for destination wedding guests, but getting them to your location can be a nightmare. First, check with your on-site planner or concierge to see what they’d charge to create them. It could help you avoid shipping costs, customs issues and just overall stress. It’s much easier to send an inspiration board and let someone else handle it!” – Lesley Smith, Ceremony App
  • “Decide on your wedding perfume! Wearing a new perfume on your wedding day is sure to create a strong connection between your experiences, those moments of love, joy and the perfume. Therefore, every time you inhale that scent afterward, you’ll instantly be taken back to those beautiful memories. It’s as if the photographs of your wedding are like watching the movie and the scent association is like reading the book. Your inherent memories come flooding back.” – Coulombe Perfume

1 week before:

  • “Confirm when and where your flowers need to be delivered. You’ll need to consider where your bouquets and boutonnieres are going for pictures (if it’s a hotel, what room number?) and when the ceremony/reception venues open for your floral deliveries.” – Euri Wong, Lead Designer at Bloominous
  • “Your wedding dress, jewelry and perhaps your “something blue” are all things you should consider carrying on rather than checking for your flight. And remember that you can distribute them to family and friends if needed. There’s just no need to take a chance.” – Lesley Smith, Ceremony App

When you arrive:

  • “Once you arrive at your destination, do a walk through and rehearsal at your ceremony site and inspect your reception site so you can make sure all of the details are good to go.” – Sherene Hulugalle, Jasmine Vine
  • “Give your itinerary to your wedding party at least 24 hours in advance. When everyone knows where they’re supposed to be and when you can avoid any day-of hiccups!” – Afeisha James-Kipps, Wedspire
  • “Have your dress either pressed or steamed to smooth out any wrinkles it encountered when traveling. Then, relax! Have a spa day for facials, massages, manicures, pedicures…and then don’t forget to enjoy your wedding day!” – Sherene Hulugalle, Jasmine Vine

Credits (in order of appearance): Photo courtesy of Aihara Visuals (2nd, 4th & 5th) and Jasmine Vine & Laura Grier (1st & 3rd) & Flowers courtesy of Bloominous (2nd, 4th & 5th).

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