Destination Wedding Checklist

June 27, 2016 | Tips

Planning a wedding can be trying at the best of times, but throw in an unfamiliar wedding destination and then add the many tasks that lay ahead of you and it can become somewhat overwhelming to say the least. Here’s a checklist with timelines that will help manage your time better.


9-12 months before wedding

  • Determine your budget, including any wedding related costs, travel expenses and your accommodations. Many couples are also concerned about what their guests will be paying and will sometimes determine a guest budget as well.
  • Contact an Ensemble® DestinationVows Specialist to help plan the big event.
  • Choose a wedding destination and resort.
  • Choose a wedding date.
  • Choose your wedding location (the earlier, the better, as locations book up quickly).
  • Choose your wedding party.
  • Create a guest list.
  • Send out a save-the-date notice to guests.
  • Block rooms and airseats.
  • Create a honeymoon registry.

6-9 months before wedding

  • Shop for a wedding dress.
  • If possible, visit your wedding resort.
  • Send out formal wedding invitation with details.
  • Confirm rooms and airseats required.
  • Confirm your wedding ceremony location, if not already done.
  • Confirm dinner/reception area with the resort.
  • Launch a wedding website.
  • Select wedding package/style. Discuss any add-ons you want to include or customize the wedding package with your own personal style.
  • Choose an Officiant.
  • Book a photographer.
  • Select attire for your wedding party.
  • Research excursions for your wedding group.

4-6 months before wedding

  • Finalize food menu, décor, flowers, cake, etc.
  • Confirm hair and make-up appointments on wedding day.
  • Make sure passports are in order.
  • Purchase wedding rings.

2-4 months before wedding

  • Plan welcome party and rehearsal dinner (if required).
  • Prepare welcome letter for your guests.
  • Purchase items for welcome bags.
  • Confirm honeymoon plans.
  • 1 month before wedding
  • Write your vows.
  • Finalize wedding ceremony.
  • Create any signs needed.

2 weeks before wedding

  • Re-confirm flight and hotel booking
  • Review and confirm wedding details.
  • Create a seating chart and place cards.
  • Create wedding program for guests.
  • On Arrival at your wedding resort
  • Meet with the resort’s wedding coordinator, go over wedding details and an inspection of your ceremony location and reception sites.
  • Apply for marriage license (sometimes this can be done ahead of time, ask your Ensemble® DestinationVows Specialist for details).
  • Do blood tests (if required).
  • Create welcome bags for guests and drop them off.
  • If required, get your wedding dress steamed.

The Wedding Day

  • Deliver wedding gift to your fiancé.
  • Have the time of your life … it’s your wedding day!


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Destination Wedding Checklist - Planning a wedding can be trying at the best of times, but throw in an unfamiliar wedding destination and then add the many tasks that lay ahead of you and it can become somewhat overwhelming to say the least. Here’s a checklist with timelines that will help manage your time better.