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bride and groom with wedding party

How To Save Money On Your Destination Wedding

Planning a destination wedding and want to save money?

Don’t worry, I got you covered!

Your destination wedding will be way cheaper than a traditional wedding.

Like 80% lessThat’s a huge difference!

Here’s how…

I spoke with destination wedding planners to collect intel for you.

And here are the money-saving tips and tricks. 

Let’s begin!

Secrets Akumal Riviera Maya wedding venue

One of the simplest ways to reduce the cost of a destination wedding is to book off-season.

This is when the prices drop anywhere between 20% to 50%.

Now that’s a steal right there!

Off-Seasons In The Caribbean
  • Mexico – April to mid-December
  • Jamaica – mid-April to June
  • Dominican Republic – May to November
  • The Bahamas – June to November

Just be flexible since a few of the months overlap with the hurricane season.

Also, if it happens to rain on the day of your ceremony, don’t worry.

Many luxurious resorts have beautiful indoor venues as well.

I mean, just look at the enchanting indoor venue at Secrets Akumal Riviera Maya in the pic above!

Married couple under Gazebo at Iberostar Parasio Del Mar

You probably own a home or are thinking about it.

Imagine having an experienced real estate pro helping you at that moment.

You’d feel pretty confident, right?

Best price, quality home, seamless transaction….you’re living large.

Your wedding needs the same love!

Working with a destination wedding specialist delivers the same benefits. It’s by-far the best way to cut costs + ensure your wedding runs smoothly.

5 Advantages of a destination wedding specialist:
  1. They know the ins and outs of wedding contracts – spotting unnecessary expenses.
  2. They have many industry connections to secure you the best package possible.
  3. They know local vendors and can get you wicked discounts on products and services.
  4. They help you keep track of your budget.
  5. They’ll hold your hand every step of the way.

Essentially, destination wedding specialists have the combined skills of a travel agent and a wedding planner!

How much do they cost?

Planners for custom weddings (private venues outside resorts) will cost anywhere between $3,500 – $20,000.

Planners for all-inclusive resort weddings are usually free. They’re like travel agents but for destination weddings. They’ll help with guest accommodation, transportation, and answer all your guest’s questions.

If you’d like help planning, check us out

bride and groom on staircase

Before you leave for your destination wedding, get legally married in your home country.

And then have a symbolic wedding at the destination.


Well, every destination has its own set of laws and legalities that you’ll have to manoeuvre.

Besides, the destination might want you to be in the country before you can legally marry.

If you have a courthouse marriage beforehand, you will save money on:
  • Legal fees
  • Transportation to and from government offices
  • Accommodation and food charges

You could use that saved money for something else, like, fund your honeymoon!

Here’s how to legally get married in Mexico.

sandos caracol cenote wedding venue

Wedding packages include some amazing services and features, at incredible prices.

You’ll find some insanely low-cost options that provide awesome value for money.

In fact, many resorts offer complimentary wedding packages where you can invite 10 to 20 guests!

They also offer beautiful elopement packages for when it’s just the 2 of you…

Most wedding packages include:
  • Wedding venue
  • Ceremony décor
  • Symbolic wedding ceremony performed by a non-denominational minister
  • Bouquet and boutonniere
  • Seating arrangements for guests
  • Reception dinner
  • Cocktail hour
  • Discounts at the spa for the couple
  • Room upgrade, and late check-in, check-out for the couple

Here are the top 10 destination wedding packages.

dreams los cabos suites golf resort & spa couple in pool

One of the most cost-effective advantages of a destination wedding?

You can begin your honeymoon immediately after the ceremony!

Thus, you save a lot on flights and other travel expenses!

Check your wedding package; it might include a complimentary honeymoon for you.

wedding on the beach at El Dorado Casitas Royale

You can reserve a “room block” which is a set number of rooms at the resort reserved for your guests. You also receive cool discounts based on the number of rooms you reserve.

These lower rates will help guests save money and make attending your wedding more convenient.

Other benefits include:
  • Group rates can be 15%-40% lower than standard room prices.
  • You will save money if you intend to cover lodging for the parents and/or wedding party.
  • A large room block at a resort will often get you a priority date.
  • Group bookings also result in spa discounts, free activities, and access to many on-site restaurants and bars, among other benefits.
  • No guest is left behind, trying to find a room at adjacent resorts.

Is Mexico on your mind? Here are 10 all-inclusive destination wedding resorts in Mexico

grand velas pool terrace

Think bringing your own vendors will save you money?

Think again.

Your wedding package includes essentials:
  • Food
  • DJ
  • hair & makeup
  • photography
  • wedding coordination
  • flowers
  • etc

Or they provide you with a list of approved vendors.

If you want to bring an outside vendor, resorts usually change $1,000 as a “outside vendor fee”.

For example… you find a wedding photographer you love. She charges $3,000 for the day. The resort will charge you a 1k outside vendor fee to let her in.

So using resort vendors is a smart way to save some moolah!

!!!! However !!!! many couples choose to bring their own photographer or videographer.

Check your wedding package; most, if not all, of these services are already covered in it.

valentin imperial riviera maya resort

If your wedding location is difficult to reach, guests may bail. (you don’t want that)

This includes costly flights to remote airports, and expensive taxi rides to the destination from the nearest airport.

Costa Rica sounds sexy and exotic until you see the flight duration and cost. 🤮

Here are some easily accessible destinations from USA:
From the west coast:
  • Los Cabos
  • Puerto Vallarta
From the east coast:
  • Cancun
  • Tulum
  • Riviera Maya
  • Playa del Carmen
  • Dominican Republic
  • Jamaica

Pro tip – most resorts include airport transfers as part of your all-inclusive stay. So you’ll save there as well!

bride and groom on the beach

As you know, the guest list accounts for a large portion of the cost of a wedding – from catering to venue size etc.

Fewer guests, as with all weddings, mean a more budget-friendly wedding.

So if possible, opt for a wedding with less than 100 guests.

You won’t HAVE TO invite colleagues, neighbors, gym mates etc!

Here are fabulous destination wedding packages for 50 guests.

Hi! I am Niyati from Need help planning your destination wedding? I'm your gal! From resort reviews to fashion tips, and everything in between, our team of certified destination wedding specialists and I've got you covered!

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