Jet Wed Co. | Finding the Perfect Destination Wedding Venue

Le Grand Salon at  Shangri-La Paris , photo courtesy of the hotel’s website.

Le Grand Salon at Shangri-La Paris, photo courtesy of the hotel’s website.

Choosing the venue is always a big component of the wedding planning process, but it bears even more significance for jet setter brides-to-be.

Many of my clients, especially for elopements, do not visit their venue before booking due to the added cost of traveling back and forth. This makes researching the venue ahead of time and asking the right questions so important!

Here’s our list of things to consider:

1. What are the dimensions of the space?

This question is especially important for ceremonies on a balcony or terrace attached to your hotel room, which serve as awesome options for brides on a budget. You’ll want to ask the venue ahead of time for specific dimensions to ensure your photographer, officiant and any other vendors have the room they need to do their job.

2. Will a back-up location be needed if there’s inclement weather?

Guests or not, you’ll want to consider if the space will work in any weather. If it’s a terrace, is there any sort of roof or covering that can be used? Is there an additional room on-site that can be used in a pinch? Knowing the answers to these questions can save you and your planner from stress.

3. Are there any special photography rules I should know about?

If you are planning on taking photos around the grounds or by any landmarks (which, let’s be serious, is a huge perk of getting married abroad!) then get clearance first. Ask if there are any rules or restrictions on photography or videography for these locations. Some cities, like Positano, may charge a fee for commercial use but not personal—communicate with your vendors to make sure their services fall within the appropriate use.

4. Can I bring my own vendors?

Before even researching photographers or a hair & makeup artist, make sure the venue you’ve chosen will allow outside vendors on your wedding day. Some places simply have a suggested list of pros to use while others may not allow you to deviate from their list. If this is the case, don’t be afraid to ask the venue for the portfolios of their preferred servicers and be ready to walk away if you do not love their work.

5. How will I pay?

You’ll want to know and have this written in a formal contract with the venue. Ask for the total amount including any fees, exactly when the payments are due and how to pay. Consider whether you’ll need to convert these costs and exchange for their currency, or if a wire transfer can be completed ahead of time. We suggest the latter when possible to limit the amount of cash you have on hand.

6. Will I need to bring any decor items and how can I transport them?

This is a big one! We always recommend choosing a venue that requires minimal decoration. Find a place with incredible views, opulent details or a background that needs no sprucing up. This allows you to bring only what is necessary, which comes in handy when you have to abide by customs and airline regulations.

Remember, this list isn’t exhaustive because every situation and wedding is unique. As always, we suggest using an experienced planner to guide you through the adventure of getting married abroad. Click here to learn more about Jet Wed Co.’s services.