Post # 1
Wasn’t sure where to post this, but it seems like here might be the most appropriate place!
I’m not quite engaged yet but will (crosses fingers) hopefully be within the next 6-12 months so I’ve got wedding planning on the brain! My SO is Mexican; I am from the US. We currently live in Mexico, but will probably relocate to the US after we get engaged.
I am so torn on where to have our wedding. I can see pros and cons to each. My SO has a lot more family than I do (and many of them do not have US visas, nor the financial means to travel to the US) and for that reason, it would make sense to do a wedding in Mexico. My family and friends would probably be happy and willing to travel (although it means that I would end up with probably only 30 guests at our wedding, and given the size of his family and his many friends, probably 300 guests on his part!)
However, I’ve always dreamed of having a big city wedding, and have had my heart set on several unique venues within the city I’m from. All of the venues in my SO’s hometown are kind of all the same…it would be a beach wedding, but they are all held at the same cookie cutter hotels. Nothing special.
I always imagined a more intimate wedding. Plus, i’m reluctant to spend the huge amount of money to finance a wedding for all of his family and friends when I would have barely any guests there. I think it would save money to have a small wedding in my city (maybe 50-75 guests on my part, and maybe 15-25 of his). I suggested to my SO we could do the official “wedding” in my city and then have a big party (but more low key) in his hometown in Mexico to celebrate with his side of the group. I just don’t know if it is the best decision though – should the fact that he has a bigger family dictate location of the principle wedding?
For those of you who are from different countries than your partners, how did you decide where to do the wedding?
Post # 3
I would go with where you live. Planning weddings LD is ridiculously hard.
Post # 4
I would also go with where you live. If you send out save-the-dates, his family will have plenty of time to get the documents they need to travel.
Post # 5
We had a small destination wedding in between our 2 countries.
We lived in Australia (where he is from) when we got engaged. Because we had a lot of his family and our friends there and we knew they wouldn’t all be able to travel for our wedding, we had a big engagement party there so we could celebrate with them. We then got married in Hawaii and about 40 people came. And now we live in the US.
Post # 6
I’m in kind of a similar situation since I’m the one that’s from Mexico and we will relocate to the US after the wedding and I’m also the one that has the larger family. So for those two reasons it made more sense to have the wedding in Mexico (he wanted my family to feel more involved since I’m leaving and also it was difficult to have everyone travel). Nevertheless, it was a VERY hard decision for me since he’s originally from the Caribbean and his hometown would have been a beautiful and beachy destination; I’m pretty sure than having the wedding over there would have made many more of his American friends willing to attend and also mine! I’m from a not very touristy city (Mty) and with all the things that the newspapers are publishing about the insecurity I’m afraid we’ll end up having a wedding with 20 of his friends and family and 200 of mine. Anyway, while discussing it he said something: “it’s going to be easier for you to plan a wedding in your hometown I think” and he didn’t need to say more, I picked Mexico (we had talked about how in the end I would end up doing most of the planning since he, you know, is a guy). Now after a bit longer than a month into the wedding planning I gotta tell you I can’t even imagine how on Earth I could have done it in his hometown, it’s hard enough as it is, being able to go to the venues, churches, listening to bands for reception, music for the ceremony, you can’t select a stylist if you don’t have couple trials, talking to priest, selecting your decorator, even for the photographs and the video that I thought was doable from afar, trust me, you need to have a meeting with them to see their work in person and see if you have chemistry (at least to me it made a huge difference), I could tell you 1000 more things.
So I guess my advice is not as much “do it in your hometown” as it is “have it in a place where you will be living during the wedding planning” or at least where you will be living for some time during it (even better if that time is at the beginning of the process, when you need to book most of the stuff). Even though I should add that having my mom supporting my decisions has been great, so that’s another pro for hometown!
That’s my experience, but maybe other bees that have planned their wedding from afar have a different perspective. Good luck!!
Post # 7
We’re in a similar situation. We’re from different countries (oceans apart) and I have a HUGE family whereas his family is very small. We thought about it long and hard and decided that the wedding will be in my country because all my family would want to attend.
It makes more sense to me for you guys to have the wedding in Mexico.
Post # 8
Hi, I’m in the same situation as soccerball..I’m from Canada and the Mr. is from Australia. We’ve decided, after an incredible amount of deliberation, to have the wedding here (and by here I actually mean New Zealand – but to people coming from Canada its all the same!)…he has several family members living in NZ that can’t travel and would be devastated to miss the wedding whereas my family…….well lets just say that if a few of them couldn’t come, i wouldn’t be terribly upset. Add to that the fact that all of our mutual friends live here, and that alot of my friends from home have been hanging out for an excuse to come visit…basically the more we talked about it, the more sense it made.
To answer you query, I really think you have to do what feels the most right for both of you. In the end its your wedding, and you have to be able to look back and think that you did things for yourselves rather than for others. if you ask 10 people in your situation you’d probably get 10 different answers, so make sure you mostly think about what you’d like best!
Good luck 🙂
Post # 9
I am Canadian and my finace is English (and we live in England). We got engaged while on holiday in Canada and spent a good amount of time deciding where we should have our wedding. My best advice is to make up a rough guest list and use that to help you decide. We ended up deciding to have our wedding in England, as the majority of friends/family on the rough guest live here and my family (sounds much like your family) is prefectly happy to travel over here (it is a rocking ‘excuse’ for a holiday for them). We also decided that we would be holding a reception in Canada (a few months following) to celebrate with any of my friends/family that cannot make the trip and they are all so pleased. This way we get a wedding in England with our closest friends/family and then a big party in Canada with more extended friends/family!
Post # 10
I am in a similar situation. I am from the states and the FH is from Dominica, but we are having the wedding where we met each other, in the BVI’s. Almost all of his family lives there, and to get to the states it would require almost $800 in fees to get the visa (they have to fly to Barbados to get) and since most of them have family in the states they would be denied a visa anyways (trust me we were told this 2 weeks ago at the embassy in Barbados). Then add in the fees to get to the states. And no, letting them know 6-12 months ahead wouldn’t give them enough time to save, these people make between 4-7$ an hour! And a flight is around 500-600$ per person from the BVI’s.
He said he was fine not having his family at the wedding, but I just couldn’t handle that. So instead we are having the wedding in the BVI’s on the beach where his family can be there and my family is flying down for it.
So yes I am planning it from a far, but for me it isn’t that much work. I am not having a crazy huge wedding and reception, but rather something small and relaxing.
Good luck though……!
Post # 11
Thanks, everyone! You all had some great feedback. It is good to know others are in this situation. Upon thinking about it, I can definitely see how all of you who said “have the wedding where you live because it makes planning easier” is very sound advice.
Since we will probably be living in the US – and because I’ve already lived there for so much of my life, and know good venues, reputable photographers, caters, etc…..it might make the most sense.
Another complicating factor is that, because of BFs current job, he gets moved around a LOT. Right now, we live about 2 hours from his hometown, but will probably be moving to another part of Mexico in the next couple months, muhc further away. In that regard, we aren’t able to have a lot of mutual friends in one place. Also..Planning a destination wedding in his hometown would probably be more difficult and probably would not end up being as much what I want, since I would not have as much control planning it.
I like the idea of two ceremonies……….has anyone else here done that? I think it would get too expensive though, but it is a really nice idea.
Post # 12
I am from the US and my FI is from Sweden, we choose to have the wedding in the US because it is where we are living and it was important to me to have the women in my family involved in the planning. When we were in Sweden this summer I was a little bummed though because the church where my FI is from is amazing.
Post # 13
One thing to consider is immigration when you are deciding. My husband is from the Netherlands and I’m a US citizen. We chose to go through immigration via the K-1 fiance visa. The fiance visa requires that we get married in the US or it becomes invalid (or at least that’s how we both understood it). Because of this (but mostly because we had decided to get married in California anyway since having my pastor officiate was important to me and they aren’t religious) we chose to get married in the US.
Planning from a distance is SO hard! I was in the Netherlands for three months while waiting on the final approval from the US government on the fiance visa and trying to work on plans from there. It’s so much easier to be able to meet with and talk to people face to face to get a better feel for how each vendor will mesh with you personality-wise and so many other things.
You mentioned 2 ceremonies in your last post. We did do 2 ceremonies, but not in the way you are talking about I think. 🙂 Both of ours were in the US! We did 2 because the fiance visa requires you to marry within 90 days of the immigrant setting foot in the US. That posed a hardship on my in-laws financially and they weren’t able to afford to be here in time to satisfy the requirements. So we planned from fairly early on to have 2 ceremonies, one was a civil ceremony which satisfied the legal requirements of immigration, and the other was at a time that my in-laws could afford to be here so that we could have a family/religious ceremony.
I knew that there would be a lot of his extended family and friends that wouldn’t be able to travel here to the US no matter when we had it (same would have gone for my family had the roles been reversed), so we planned a pre-wedding reception (or engagement party if you want to split hairs) in the Netherlands while I was there. That way both families and both sets of friends were able to be included even if they weren’t able to make it to one of the weddings.