Hawaii is one of the most scenic, incredible places in the world. Its isolation in the Pacific ocean often makes it seem like a world of its own. That’s why so many couples flock there to share one of the most important days of their lives.
However, planning a destination wedding can be a lot of work, and Hawaii is a lot bigger than people think. Here are five tips for planning a Hawaiian destination wedding.
Pick Your Location
Hawaii is an archipelago, meaning that it’s actually a collection of eight large islands rather than one. These include Maui, Hawaii, Kauai, Oahu, Molokai, Lanai, Niihau, and Kahoolawe. Some of these islands aren’t open to tourists, so the main focus for a wedding falls to Maui, Hawaii (or The Big Island), Oahu, Lanai, and Kauai.
Maui, Oahu, and Hawaii are popular choices for destination weddings and the focal point of most tourists. Lanai is a smaller, more exclusive island to the south of Maui. It’s mostly undeveloped, which can be challenging for planning. Kauai is the hidden gem of Hawaii. Also known as the Garden Isle, this island is filled with incredible vistas and lush forests. The pros at the Koloa Landing Resort often incorporate the natural beauty of their surroundings into the ceremony and reception for an unforgettable event.
Set a Budget
They say you can’t put a price tag on memories, but a wedding in Hawaii will have a hefty one. Take some time to research what things will cost, considering your accommodations, ceremony, flights, and extras and adjust your budget accordingly. It’s also important to look at what the cost will be for guests and members of the bridal party, and determine what you’re willing to cover.
Don’t be deterred by some of the prices you see during your research. If going to Hawaii and being married in one of the most beautiful places on earth is important to you, there are ways to make it happen at different price points.
Talk to Your People ASAP
As soon as you’ve decided to get married in Hawaii and confirmed that it’s possible, you’ll need to communicate with your family and bridal party. If you have a lot of guests on your list, let them know as soon as possible. Approach this issue with the mindset that not everyone will be able to come, but the more notice you provide, the better your chances.
Be reasonable in your expectations. As much as many of your loved ones want to be there, finances and responsibilities sometimes make it impossible. Give your bridal party a chance to decline well in advance and be ready to have some open discussions.
Incorporate Hawaiian Culture
Hawaii is more than just a beautiful place visually; its culture is incredible. Incorporate some elements from the Hawaiian culture into your day. Be open to ukuleles, tiki torches, and leis. It’s these finer details that will make your wedding a truly Hawaiian experience, rather than just a destination wedding.
Consider the Attire
Choosing a wedding dress can be even more exciting than choosing a destination for your nuptials. When traveling, it can also mean an extra layer of stress. Choose a dress that won’t drag in the sand or feel too heavy in the heat. You also want something that can be transported easily. While flying, try to take your dress as a carry-on item if possible or see if you can gate check it.
Take the same approach to your wedding party. Choose light, easy-to-manage dresses for your bridesmaids and breathable clothing for your groomsmen. Be careful when considering rentals for a destination wedding and opt for something other than a tux if possible.
Careful planning is key when planning a Hawaiian destination wedding. Working with a destination wedding plannercan also help with the process. You may want to use this process as an excuse to escape to Hawaii beforehand, you know, to scope everything out.