Post # 1
My fiance and I have been engaged for over a year and we have finally, FINALLY, found something we truly want to pursue: a destination wedding in Northern California. We found an amazing resort that caters to the vegan lifestyle (we are both vegan). The only problem is… it’s a 3+ hour drive from the nearest airport.
We already think money is going to be an issue for his side of the family, and now not only are we asking them to fly across the country… AND rent a car… but they have to drive THREE hours each way just to get to the resort. And my parents think the fact that it’s vegan will be a dealbreaker, too, because according to her, “If you’re asking your guests to hike uphill both ways, they’re going to want a juicy steak.” (I’ll leave my comments about the fact that this is OUR wedding day and this is what WE want to myself.)
I really think the distance from the airport will be a dealbreaker for our guests. I’m afraid they’ll agree to the idea, and then about a month before the wedding start dropping like flies when they realize that on top of airfare they’re going to have added expenses like gas and rental cars.
I looked for public transport, to see if there are trains, busses, etc., and apparently there’s really nothing like that in Northern CA that suits our needs. I found a really convoluted route where they’d have to take Bus A to XYZ and then take Train B to EFG and it was just a nightmare.
DW bees: what did you do to cut costs for your guests, if anything? Were you able to negotiate any airfare deals, hotel blocks, transportation?
Post # 2
We are doing a dw at an all-inclusive in Cuba, so we set up a group rate that expired after 90 days with a travel agent. Our guests got in for $970 a person for a week instead of $1200+ that the prices are usually to that resort for that week/month. It kinda sucked asking people to put a $200 deposit down so early (a year in advance) but it helped out with cost for them so quite a few people took advantage of it.
A three hour drive from the airport is quite lengthy. Whereabouts are you from? Will most of your guests from both sides have to travel no matter where you host it?
Post # 3
Is there a way for you and your FI to rent a large bus or shuttle to transport your gusts to/from the airport and resort? That is asking quite a lot of your guests. Flying in, sure no problem, but driving that far also? :-/
Post # 4
happyuphere: If you really think people won’t attend because of the travel, you have to seriously contemplate which is more important to you – having your wedding at this location, or having your wedding well-attended by the people you invite.
Post # 5
MrsTywinLannister: +1 – this! Look into renting a shuttle bus. People will appreciate it!
Post # 6
If you’ve not put down a deposit/signed a contract yet, you may want to seriously re-think your venue if you want a lot of folks to come out and you don’t want to be a major imposition to them. I would imagine that there’s not a whole lot of things to do besides that resort in such a remote location; I’m guessing in Northern California there are probably some wineries, and some gorgeous scenery, but it sounds like it’s not really a good place to be a tourist looking for something to do. Even if you could work out the transportation for your guests (which would be a logistical nightmare unless they are all taking the same flights) and spare them that expense, for many people, the remote location with no dining/entertainment/tourism choices would be a huge put-off.
Post # 7
happyuphere: I’m not officially engaged by my guy and I are planning a DW for August of 2015. With airfare and hotel and a weekend of activities, we’ve decided to rent a bus for the whole weekend to defray cost if only by a little bit. DWs alone are a big ask, and we wanted as many ppl as possible to come because a DW isnt worth it for us if we cant celebrate with the ones we love. I get the OUR day and WE want this, this, and this but think about your guest who will be travelling to celebrate your day with you. If you arent the least bit accomodating, whether it be with location, food, or transporation, you may be setting yourself up for a bit of disappointment when it comes to RSVPs.
Post # 8
I just finished my DW and we were 2hrs from destination sight. we were going to rent a big van but everyone wanted their own transportation to drive where they wanted too. Just remember, its your wedding. They will have to pay for the rental car, the airfare, the hotel. I would get the best type of room rate you can and maybe one category below for those that think it’s too pricey but close to the hotel. Whats your cut off date and attrition of the food and beverage minimum?
Post # 9
I don’t know your family and friends, but that sounds like a lot to ask of your guests. I don’t know if I would do it personally.
What is more important to you, having a larger group of your family and friends attend your wedding or having it at this location? What about a wedding that does not require so much travel and financial commitment from guests and having the honeymoon at this resort?