Tips for Planning a Destination Wedding in Mexico

Beach wedding arrangementDestination weddings are becoming increasingly popular, as more couples discover the intrinsic benefits of celebrating their big day in an exotic, warm-weather locale. According to bridal authority TheKnot, Mexico ranks among the world’s top places for a destination wedding. Given the country’s amazing array of natural attractions, archeological ruins and stunning scenery, it’s no wonder why Mexico is the perfect place for couples who want a beautiful—yet affordable—beach wedding in paradise.

The villas and resorts are world-class, the cuisine is fantastic, English is widely spoken, flights are inexpensive, and destinations like the Riviera Maya, Cancun, Acapulco and Los Cabos offer a gorgeous backdrop for one of the most memorable days of your life.

If you’re planning on tying the knot in Mexico, heed these practical tips for planning a destination wedding that is stress-free and fun for everyone!

Hire a wedding coordinator

Your week of wedded bliss begins with hiring an expert planner – someone who knows the best caterers, photographers, venues and florists in the area. Planning a wedding from abroad takes a lot of logistics, patience and time! By enlisting the services of an experienced coordinator, you’ll be saved the hassles and stresses that can turn a bride-to-be into a Bridezilla. Insider tip: look for a planner who has organized other weddings in the same destination or venue.

Plan a visit in advance of the wedding

If you have a date in mind, it’s best to visit your intended wedding destination in advance to familiarize yourself with the local ambience, available venues, accommodations and vendors. Think of this trip as a mini-romantic getaway that doubles as scouting session.

Time it right

While most of Mexico’s famous beach towns promise balmy, sunbathing weather year-round, rains can spoil an otherwise splendid sunset ceremony. Avoid weather-related fiascos by planning your wedding between November and April, which are traditionally considered the “dry season” months. Keep in mind that Christmas and Easter (known as Semana Santa) holidays are particularly crowded in tourist hotspots, making travel arrangements more challenging. In a perfect world, you will book your venue at least 10-12 months in advance.

Send wedding invites early

You’re ready to celebrate in style with your closest friends and family, which means you need to give them ample time to clear their calendars, arrange for childcare and book tickets. Standard etiquette dictates that you should send out Save the Dates a good 6-8 months in advance of the ceremony. A formal invite should be sent out at least 3 months before the wedding and include pertinent info on accommodations, reception, event plans, dress code, gift registries and local sightseeing and activities.

Know the legal requirements for paperwork

A local wedding coordinator can prove invaluable for helping couples obtain the necessary paperwork to be legally married in Mexico. Though requirements vary from state to state, most U.S. and Canadian citizens will need valid passports, their tourist permits, certified birth certificates and an affidavit of single status. Foreign documents must be translated, notarized and apostilled. Couples can also choose to have a symbolic ceremony in Mexico after being legally wed in their hometown.

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