Planning a Destination Wedding During the Pandemic? Boutique NYC PR Agency Spotlights Five Key Trends
COVID-19 has added a number of obstacles to the already complicated process of planning a destination wedding: testing, quarantining, and contact tracing have to be considered on top of group flight bookings, reserving blocks of hotel rooms, and legal marriage requirements.
Wedding Insights reports, “couples worked tirelessly with their vendor teams to create a safe and memorable wedding day—from keeping guests socially distanced at the ceremony (62 percent) and hosting them outside (68 percent) to embracing technology, such as streaming, to allow for guests to witness the day from afar (43 percent).
To help navigate these challenges in a confusing and always-changing environment, Allen Marketing Communications, a boutique travel and lifestyle public relations agency, spotlights five trends to expect this year for destination weddings.
Deals to Encourage Weddings
You’re not the only one who misses destination weddings; hotels and resorts in popular locations are hurting without them as well. To attract couples, these resorts have begun offering accommodations and deals.
Testing for the coronavirus is absolutely essential for destination weddings, as it helps to ensure that nobody brings and spreads the respiratory virus. Armed with this information, certain hotels are now offering COVID-19 testing to make your trip and stay easier. In terms of deals, perks that were once reserved for the newlyweds are now available to all guests. Things such as resort credit, free excursions, and private transfers encourage people to attend the wedding.
Hotels are even making an effort to include guests who still don’t feel comfortable or cannot travel to the wedding. Many offer an option for virtual guests, who can then view and participate in the wedding even if they aren’t there physically. A number of resorts go the extra mile, gifting virtual guests with party favors and treats.
This trend has been gaining popularity for some time, and there is no near end in sight. Couples are consistently choosing options that minimize their impact on the planet, and it looks like they’re going to continue to do so for the foreseeable future. As destination weddings tend to have a smaller effect on the environment, their popularity is surging as well. Otherwise, couples are making choices like Evites, biodegradable and natural decorations, and buying conflict-free, ethical jewelry.
The pandemic has made a lot of couples rethink what they want in a wedding. By not being able to travel or really go outside for a year has made people miss the great outdoors and faraway destinations. They want their wedding to be a truly special event that they can relive for years to follow.
This sentiment has led to a rise of weddings in neutral locations that are connected to neither person. This way, the married couple can revisit the spot on anniversaries or vacations. They can show the spot to their children, friends, and family on later trips as well. Overall, the pandemic has pushed couples towards destinations that will serve as the perfect spot to visit time and time again.
Popular Destinations for 2021 and On
There are a number of very popular destinations that are constantly busy with weddings, and these locations change over time. Before the pandemic, places such as Mexico have been very popular, according to The Destination Weddings Blog. Cancun, Cabo San Lucas, and Riviera Maya were in the top five, with Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic and Montego Bay in Jamaica rounding out the list.
Now, after a year of uncertainty and fear, we see new destinations jumping into the spotlight. These include St. Lucia, Ochos Rios and Negril in Jamaica, Puerto Vallarta in Mexico, Livermore in California, the United Kingdom, and Iceland. If you have your eye on any of these places, you should know that you aren’t the only one.
Lots of Planning and Waiting
As much as we want to jump headfirst back into the wedding craze, the pandemic has thrown a wrench in all of our plans. For many, waiting for things to settle down is the best option.
This gives them more time to plan, save up money, and make sure the special day is absolutely perfect. High Emotion Weddings estimates “that we’ll see many of these weddings in 2022 and 2023, which is the same timeframe that they suggest if you’re planning your wedding right now.”
If you don’t want to wait, there are things you can do to make your life easier and less stressful, because we all know how hectic wedding planning can be. Firstly, go into everything with flexibility and be realistic. Things may change, get postponed, or even be cancelled. We’re in a crazy time and there’s little that can be done about it. If it does happen, be prepared and have a backup plan.
The next step would be to hire an experienced destination wedding planner, as they are best equipped to help you. The same goes for any business that you work with, and make sure to carefully read every contract you sign. Do plenty of research, too!
And if you don’t want to wait but also don’t want to plan your wedding around COVID-19 restrictions, you can always sign the papers now and celebrate later! A legal marriage requires no fanfare or planning, just a trip down to the courthouse to sign some papers. If you really want to marry your partner, that’s always an option. The fun part can always come later, because in the end, the love is what matters most. The destination isn’t going anywhere.
According to the Boston Globe, “the roughly $16 billion per year romance travel industry — an umbrella term for destination weddings, honeymoons, proposal travel, and babymoons — is holding its collective breath and chanting the mantra of “keep calm and carry on.”
While the pandemic has made it very difficult to plan a wedding, it has not made it impossible. As more people are vaccinated and we continue to fight the coronavirus, destination weddings will regain their popularity.
Our travel and lifestyle public relations professionals at Allen Marketing Communications can always help you to navigate these confusing times in the destination weddings industry.
By Kendall Mason at Allen Marketing Communications, Inc.