Have Bridesmaids, Will Travel

Thursday, November 12, 2009

I just returned from a destination wedding that had 9 bridesmaids and 10 groomsmen!!! It was a HUGE wedding party considering the size of the wedding, but oh, so wonderful that the couple has so many amazing friends. It got me thinking a bit about destination wedding parties, and I wanted to share a few of my tips on how to spoil the friends that are literally willing to travel the world for you:

Go easy on the extra expenses.
Four hundred dollar heels or a couture gown is simply unnecessary and unreasonable for a bridesmaid who’s so giving of her time and finances. If asking your wedding party to travel, be flexible on the actual attire for the day. Consider allowing each lady to choose their own attire, with your approval of course or forgo traditional bridesmaids dresses by using the destination as your inspiration. A lightweight sundress is the perfect compliment for an island wedding or consider a vintage cocktail dress if marrying in the wine country.

Spa Day anyone?
Whether it’s golfing for the guys or a full on pamper fest for the ladies, treat your attendants to a day of bonding and relaxation once you arrive at your destination. After all, it’s their vacation too.

Don’t expect extras
Don’t put added stress on your bridal party for extras like an over-the-top bachelorette party in Vegas or a lavish bridal shower in Napa Valley. Let them off easy by hinting that simple get-togethers will do for any pre-wedding celebrations and insist on no gifts from attendants traveling.

Upgrades all around
Consider contacting the hotel where your attendants are staying and upgrade their rooms. Whether you give them an ocean view or complimentary breakfast in bed every morning, they will definitely feel your love and appreciation.

Welcome them in style
Definitely consider gift baskets for your bridal party, if for no one else.

Spoil the family
If your attendants are traveling with their spouses or children, be sure to do something extra special for the family. In Hawaii, set up lei making classes for the kids, while sending your attendants and significant others off for duo massages. In Mexico, set up a private dinner in seaside cabanas for each couple.

Make it simple
Whatever happens, make the travel plans for your wedding party as easy as possible. Have your wedding planner or travel agent do all of the footwork, researching the best accommodations and fun activities each attendant might enjoy. Also, don’t forget to provide an itinerary for each member of your bridal party so they can be plan for their trip accordingly.

Don’t demand every second
When planning the week’s celebrations, don’t forget to allow each attendant some down time. Give them the opportunity to explore the location on their own and partake in activities that you may not have incorporated into the week’s events.

No matter what, acknowledge the great gift each person in your wedding party is giving you by not only attending your out-of-town affair but by standing by your side every step of the way. They will help you create the memories that will last a lifetime and for that show them that you will be forever thankful.

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