• view count-9 Crucial Things You’ll Want to Know Before Paying the Deposit For a Destination Wedding 6.6K

Planning a destination wedding can be a hassle - and we’re not just talking about the distance. Pretty Instagram photos are great but shouldn’t be the deciding factor on whether you’ll book a venue for the most important day of your life. Before you pay the deposit for your destination wedding venue, here’s 9 very crucial things you’ll want to check off beforehand. Not only will it save you from possible disappointment or spending more than you should, but it’ll also allow you to have a smooth start to the wedding planning process!

1. Seriously, visit the venue if you can


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If you have the time, visiting the venue beforehand comes highly recommended. For example, if you’re deciding between the beautiful garden wedding venue or the signature sandy beach wedding at The Laguna, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa in Nusa Dua, Bali, you’ll want to see the two venues and compare them side by side in person. “We believe that one visit to the site before the wedding is absolutely essential,” says the wedding team from The Laguna, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa. “Alternately, we’ll show some pictures and videos of real weddings held at the property. We’ll also invite you to visit our venue’s pages on our social media sites, which can also be another alternative way to help understand the venue.” 


2. If you can’t make a visit, ask for a lot of reference photos from real weddings


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Whether it’s real weddings from the past or stylised shoots provided by the hotel, ask for lots of photos if you can’t find the time to make a visit. For example, a rough Google search will bring up lots of stunning photos from the famous garden lawn wedding venue at The Naka Island, but reach out to the wedding team personally and you’ll be able to see even more photos from different angles! “Apart from the mockup photo presentation presented by wedding sales person, you may ask from them for some reference photos from actual weddings, most recent ones to get to know how and where do they normally hold the wedding at,” says the wedding team at The Naka Island. “In case if the venue is totally outdoor, is there any backup plan? What’s their action plan? Do they have any venue options? Make sure you got those pictures and information too.”


3. Don’t be afraid to ask any type of questions or request, no matter how small the detail


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If it means asking the wedding planning team to do a video call with you and show you around the venue, it’s worth it. When it comes to planning a destination wedding and booking a venue for the most important day of your life, no question is a dumb question. For example, the wedding team from Sheraton Resort and Spa Tokoriki Island is open to doing video calls and showing guests around their clean, sand beach venues or even their signature Chapel ceremony venue - all you have to do is ask! “Technology is very advanced today, do a video call and ask to be shown around,” explain the team. “Questions you should ask the venue should be around accessibility, location, weather conditions at that time, options at the hotel, any do’s and don’t’s to be followed, visa requirements, civil requirements for the wedding, registration of the wedding, etc.”


4. Consider the location of the venue, transportation, and what conditions it’s in


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Pretty wedding venues are always fun to look at and very tempting to book right away - but you’ll definitely need to consider additional factors such as venue condition. The Cloud Nine Chapel at The St. Regis Bali Resort is a consistent favorite among brides because it’s always kept in perfect condition, something everyone should consider among other criteria. “Consider the location of the venue, how to get there, and the current condition of the venue,” says the wedding team. “If you can’t see the venue in person, ask the venue to send you photos or video from the latest wedding show. You can also see wedding videos from the web or even wedding venue pictures.”


5. Read lots of reviews and guest feedback online


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Though the beach lawn wedding venue situated on a secluded cove at Le Meridien Phuket looks picture perfect, you’ll still want to read lots of online reviews and feedback to put your mind at ease, advises the hotel’s wedding team. “Aside from a destination’s popular seasons, research on the destination through review sites (such as Asia Wedding Network that are focused on weddings, or Expedia or Trip Advisor, which are focused on travel.) Feedback from other guests’ experience, not necessarily strictly wedding-related, would give you a good idea on what to expect,” they explain. "Dig deeper into cues as well. If a venue does less wedding events than another venue you’re prospecting, it doesn’t always mean that they are the inferior choice. If the venue hosts numerous corporate events, conferences or banquets, this is a good indication that the venue is capable of successfully hosting your wedding.”


6. Ask about the marriage legalities of the destination


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Take one look at the Le Meridien Koh Samui and you’ll think that they’re known for their gorgeous ocean pier wedding. However, they also boast a strong wedding team that can help you with even the smallest of details, such as marriage legalities. “Before making a final decision, the bride and couple should get all information about wedding packages and inclusions, also specific legalities or requirements,” says the wedding team. “To avoid any extraneous measures or costs, the couple could also consider getting legally married in your hometown and hosting a ceremony and festivities at another destination.”


7. Be wary of any popular holidays or big events - this may affect pricing


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Certain local holidays and traditions may affect the total cost of your wedding. There may be village fees or extra services costs during certain times of the year. “When making a final decision on the destination it’s a good idea to do a final check for any big events happening around the city or around the venue you are considering,” says the wedding team from Le Meridien Phuket. "If your wedding takes place around a popular holiday, celebration, or city-wide event, price of guest rooms and goods may be affected. Consider also the effect on accessibility for guests who would like to travel around, transfers and traffic, etc. This is especially so if all of your guests would be flying-in and would be requiring rooms. Typically, hotels and venues are able to provide good value deals in months where demand for rooms and services are less.” 


8. Double check with payment methods and fees


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Once you’ve decided on, for example, holding your wedding at the famous Temple Garden at The Laguna in Nusa Dua, Bali, you’ll want to double check with the wedding team on how best to make the payment so that you don’t end up paying extra currency or transfer fees. You’ll also want to see if there are any perks or cash back promos with certain credit card companies. “Check with the venue for the payment method options (such as: does the venue applies surcharge for payment made by credit card or not?, Does the bank/currency fees are shared between wedding couple and the venue or it is all borne by wedding couple?, Etc.)” explains the team.


9. Don’t be afraid to ask the venue to adjust or revise the agreement


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If you agreed on drone photography or using the venue past a certain time but it says otherwise in the contract, double check with the wedding team and ask them to revise the agreement. “All details input in the agreement is very important it should be based on previously discussed & agreed on pricing & items,” says the wedding team at The Naka Island. “There are always terms and conditions in every part of the agreement so make sure you’ve read the agreement every pages together with your partner and understand and acknowledge it. If any detail flags out, make sure you asked for explanation from the wedding sales person. If the details is incorrect, they need to adjust/ revise the agreement and send back to you to review again before sign the agreement and settle the deposit.”