What comes to mind when you think of a “destination wedding?” Most people think sandy beaches and palm trees… or some exotic foreign country serving the dual purpose of wedding locale and honeymoon. What if you’re looking for a destination that doesn’t require a passport? Of the roughly 2.5 million weddings that occur in the United States per year, 21 percent are destination weddings (that is a lot of destination weddings!). In the continental U.S., the most popular destination wedding locations are Florida, California and Nevada, with Las Vegas serving as the number on location (with more than 100,000 weddings per year). Are you surprised? We’re not. Outside of the kitsch Elvis-inspired wedding chapel experience, Las Vegas is readily equipped and ideally suited for a destination wedding. Why?
1. Travel Accessibility, Accommodations and Cost – How easy is it to get there? How costly is it to get there? Are there suitable accommodations for all of your guests (this is where Las Vegas really shines with packages and deals).
2. The Wedding Itself – How much will the actual event set you back? And, how much will you have to do versus how much will be taken care of for you?
3. Overall Guest Experience – What is there to do while you and your guests are there? There will be lots of wedding related festivities, but what about down time? Are you asking your guests to join you in a small town with little else to experience besides the wedding?
These three factors should help guide you when considering a destination wedding and selecting the location.
The truth is… a destination wedding can be held anywhere. We can (re)define “destination wedding” as a wedding set in a location where most (if not all) of your guests are traveling to attend the wedding festivities. You may be surprised to know that, since opening our doors at 128 South in 2010, 60-70 percent of our clients are hosting a destination wedding. And, although I may be a little biased, I understand why. Wilmington, North Carolina answers our questions with ease – the location is readily accessible with ample accommodations and reasonable travel costs; compared to other popular locations, the average Wilmington bride can expect to spend less without comprising headcount, quality or style; and with Wrightsville Beach a few miles down the road and picturesque downtown there is plenty for your guests to see, do and enjoy.
Learn more about hosting your destination wedding in Wilmington at 128 South by clicking HERE. And stay tuned for our pros and cons of hosting a destination wedding!