Aoife & Claire are both planning an Algarve wedding
Yes, we are planning two destination weddings in the Wexford office at the moment. Believe me when I tell you, I think I have searched every Instagram hashtag to find the perfect wedding location. I had looked at Italy, Croatia, Spain and Portugal before I finally decided where I wanted to get married. I looked at most of these places before I had even got engaged! Most girls do, so don’t let them tell you any different.
When I got engaged I realised that I needed to book something soon because dates really do book up! I booked mine in January 2017 and the wedding planner had no available dates for June 2018. I managed to get a date in early July.
Claire and I have put together some top tips to help you plan your destination wedding. Don’t be afraid of a destination wedding. Once you find the right wedding planner and book your wedding is booked, it is relatively stress free.
Claire and I both agree that it would be too stressful to organise a destination wedding without a wedding planner. They know all the right people, venues and they do all the hard work for you. I chose Glamour Weddings Algarve and Claire chose Algarve Events. I chose glamour weddings because their website and social media was really good. They had recorded a video and I kinda fell in love with them. Their pricing was on the website and they responded so quickly to any of my emails and 90% of their clients are Irish. They know what we like!
Claire chose Algarve Events because they were recommended by family friend. She found them so quick to deal with over email and she had so worried because they have years of experience in planning weddings.
I visited my wedding location and venue in March and not only did it make everything feel real but I got to visit the good hotels, meet the wedding planner, pick flowers and try out all the local nightlife. You would worry that the place doesn’t live up to expectation but I was so thrilled. Your guests will ask you so many questions in the run up to the weeding and after your visit you will be more informed.
Don’t sweat the small stuff
Your guests will treat your wedding like a mini getaway or a family holiday. There is no need to spend lots of money on wedding favours or extravagant flowers. People will be enjoying the sun, dancing in bare feel and enjoying the view. Instead of wedding favours Claire donated money to Make a Wish Foundation. There is no need to book wedding cars or anything like that.
You have to decide if you want to have the legal part of your marriage organised over here or in Portugal. Claire said she regrets not doing the legal part in Ireland simply because she has to organise paperwork and send it out to Portugal. When you have to pay for a legal and symbolic ceremony the costs do add up.
It is really hard to chose a wedding singer and band from a youtube video. When you are visting your wedding location, try and find out where your band will be playing. It puts your mind at ease knowing that you hear them yourself. We all know that a band can make or break an Irish wedding.
I hope this helps if you are thinking about getting married abroad!
Image source: glamourweddings.pt