The thing I hear most often from couples who are planning their wedding?
It takes sooooooo much work.
And I don’t disagree. It’s incredible how much work goes into planning your big day. Not to mention, how to plan this soiree when you’re in a different province trying to coordinate vendors and style your wedding. It can get overwhelming.
Luckily, if you’re saying, “I don’t have enough time for this!” Then there’s a simple solution: have someone do the coordinating and planning for you or take a deep breath and follow a plan.
That sounds pretty easy, no? In this blog post, I’m going to tell you how to save time, money and get things done. Ready to have less stress and plan your Maritime wedding abroad? Let’s do this.
Photo Credit: Philip Boudreau Photography
1. Remember Holidays & Busy Travel Times
Before booking anything, take a look at the calendar and consider holidays, special dates in The Maritime provinces, and where you’re based, if you’re inviting any of your friends to travel back with you, before deciding on your preferred dates. The July and August holidays, Christmas time, etc… can be super busy in The Maritimes and expensive flights and accommodations.
2. Organize the Legalities As Soon As Possible
Each province in The Maritime provinces have different requirements when it comes to marriage licenses. The paperwork must be filled out a minimum of 3 months before the chosen date and you must appear in person. Check out my post on how to get a marriage license in New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island.
3. Check on Religious Ceremony Requirements
To have a Catholic wedding in The Maritimes, the couple must have completed the required pre-marriage course and to prove their eligibility to marry in the Catholic Church. Each religion has different requirements, so be sure to check to see what the exact requirements from your church are.
4. Get a Skype Account
An additional cost you want to avoid when planning a wedding abroad are long-distance phone calls. You’ll be having loads of these with your various wedding vendors so go ahead and get a Skype account if don’t have one already. Calling on Facebook messenger, Google Hangouts is possible as well but I find most businesses prefer to arrange calls on Skype rather than getting random messages on their personal accounts.
Photo Credit: Shannon Lee Reid Photography
5. Remember the Time Difference
For couples based on the West Coast, the time difference is probably the single most annoying part of planning a wedding in The Maritimes from abroad. There’s nothing that can be done about that I’m afraid but to have a little bit of patience. You’ll be waiting hours for a response but avoid the temptation to call or email in the middle of the time (Atlantic Standard Time) because you haven’t gotten a response yet.
6. Wedding Businesses Work Weekends
Unfortunately, another source of frustration can be slow responses. Keep in mind that wedding businesses are onsite/underway on Fridays and Saturdays and Sunday is usually a much-deserved day off. So, while you have more time to think about your wedding on the weekend, your supplies aren’t available then. If you’re looking for a quick turnaround time, it’s worth bearing in mind that Monday to Thursday are the best days to arrange calls, send emails and generally try to communicate with your suppliers.
7. Get the Look, Save the Stress – Hire a Stylist
If you’re like most carats & confetti brides and grooms, you have a certain vision and expectation for the style of your wedding. Styling a wedding, sourcing items to rent, finding the right suppliers who can deliver the look you envision and coordinating them all is difficult enough when you’re based in the same city. If you’re based abroad, my advice is to let someone else take care of this-it will be far too stressful and ruin your wedding planning experience. Hire a great stylist, explain your vision clearly and trust them.
8. For a Tent Wedding or Wedding at Home – Hire a Planner
Dreaming of an outdoor wedding or having your wedding at home? The best piece advice I can give you is to hire a wedding planner. Planning a tent wedding at home is no easy feat and if you’re located outside of The Maritimes it is almost impossible to keep a cool head. Put the extra in the budget and save yourself so much time, money, and stress in the long run.
Photo Credit: Andy Tree Photography
9. Venue Visits
When you’re far away it’s hard to not be scared to commit to a venue without seeing it. If you aren’t able to view venues prior to, then ask someone whose taste you trust, who understands what you’re looking for, and whose honest opinion you trust.
10. Trust Your Vendors
Before you hire anyone for your wedding you definitely want to do a good deal of background research. What kind of weddings have they done before? Where have they worked? Do you like their style? Do you like the real weddings they’ve been featured in? Choosing suppliers whose style matches yours should make the relationship easier because you’re going to have to trust them to deliver your vision when you haven’t had a face-face-conversation.
11. Be Home at Least A Week Before the Wedding
Between jet lag, wedding nerves, and last minute arrangements, you’ll need some time to adjust to everything and properly prepare. My advice is come home a week before the wedding and allow yourself at least 3-5 days afterward to give yourself some breathing room. Trust me when I tell you that you’ll be buzzing on adrenaline after your big day, so a little bit of time to decompress afterward with family and friends will be wonderful.
12. Don’t go overboard bringing things back to The Maritimes
It may be tempting to get everything you need where you are and try to bring it home to The Maritimes in your luggage but beware of the hassle of bringing loads of luggage, the extra cost, and the inevitable sinking feeling when you forgot something important and can’t run hoe to get it. If you’re planning the décor yourself, try and get them back East and shipped home ahead of you. Also, delegate some of the shopping to a good friend or relative can save you a lot of time and heartache.
13. Transporting Your Dress
Ask the flight attendant if they could hang your gown in first class or book a seat of its own. You need to keep it flat or hanging to avoid creasing and crushing.
Alright my friends, I hope you found this post helped you plan your wedding in The Maritimes abroad.
Got questions? Leave a comment. Let’s chat!
Banner Image: Anita Clemens Photography
Don’t Forget It: Pin It!