Post # 1
FI and I are attempting to select a venue for a small wedding of 40-50 guests, but 8-12 of our guests will be flying in from out of town. We live relatively close to an airport, but due to cost concerns, all of our planning has focused on areas outside of our city. FMIL would like us to pick a venue closer to the airport. It had never occurred to me before that I needed to be a certain distance from an airport, although from a guest perspective I can see how tiring it would be to have to fly and then drive an appreciable distance. Is this something you considered when planning your wedding? How far is too far?
Post # 2
annabanana85: i’d say no more than 2 hrs, so something like John Wayne to Palm Springs or SFO / OAK to Napa or Sonoma.
I once had to drive 90 min from Boston to BFE and you can bet their wedding was not guest-centric. No hotel bar, no open bar, bitchy bridesmaids and no DJ. And outdoor wedding when it was damn cold.
Post # 3
bitsybee: Thanks so much for the reply! We are certainly hoping to be more guest-centric than that regardess. At the very least, there will be open bar. I thought one hour would definitely be reasonable, but I grew up in the middle of nowhere, so it was 2 hours or more to get to anything, so I’ve been worried my perception is skewed.
Post # 4
- Wedding: September 2014 - Cadillac mountain
I never really thought about it, but about half of our guests are flying in. Our ceremony is at 6am and around 2 hours from the airport. The reception is about 4 hours from the ceremony spot (and about 1 hour from the airport) and on the next day. Our schedule is a little wonky, but it works for us. i don’t think it makes a big difference if you are super close to the airport, but I also grew up in the middle of nowhere so my perception may be skewed as well.
Post # 5
Thanks, Jessica! Its good to hear more people chime in with personal perspective.
Post # 6
annabanana85: our ceremony and reception were 1.5 hrs from the airport (napa/sonoma) and nobody complained. We had a fairly guest-centric wedding though- everybody got welcome bags, we had a welcome party the day before the wedding with apps, dessert, and wine/beer. At least half of our weddig guests (50 ppl) made a trip out of it and spent extra days in San Francisco and/or napa/sonoma, but that really depends on your location. I’ve been to other domestic destination weddings that were similar And worked well. It is a bit much to drive over an hour after flying if there isn’t hospitality and an extra pre or post wedding event.
jessica.lanphere: your timing and travel seems like there either must be typos or it’s very very atypical (especially for guests’ Comfort and convenience).
Post # 7
jessica.lanphere: Your ceremony is 4 hours away from your reception site?!! Surely that has to be a typo.
I voted 1-2 hours. We only have a couple of guests flying in and our venue is about 30-45 minutes from the airport, depending on traffic. I didn’t give thought to this while planning because the few people flying in will be visiting with friends and family as well. Meaning they won’t be landing and heading right to the wedding.
Post # 8
This was one of the reasons we decided to have our wedding in the city. All of our friends have to come in from out of town (flying), and with the costs of a flight and hotel room for the weekend, we didn’t want to make them rent a car and navigate unfamiliar roads. We just wanted to make things as easy as possible for our out of town guests…and a city wedding was what I always wanted anyway!
I think 1-2 hours is fine, though! But make sure it’s a major airport. A lot of times those tiny little airports end up being CRAZY expensive to fly into.
Post # 9
annabanana85: I’d say no more than a 2 hour drive if possible.
Over half of our guest list are coming from out of town, so their convenience was a top priority for us. We live close to DC in Maryland and we’re lucky that we have 3 major airports that are in close proximity to each other, and are 30mins to less than an hour away from our venue. Reagan National is actually accessible by our local subway system with a stop that’s less than 3 miles to our venue as well.
Our venue is actually the hotel that our guests will be staying at, and since we’ll be having the ceremony and reception there, we didn’t have to worry about providing transportation either.
Post # 10
As a guest, I don’t mind taking a bit of a hike from the airport to the general area where the wedding and reception will be, but I do mind when the wedding/reception are out in the middle of nowhere with no local amenities or attractions like restaurants, pubs and shops. I know the primary purpose of my visit is your wedding, but I’m going to have a bit of down time (night before the wedding, morning of, next day, whatever) and I like it to be easy for me to get out and explore the area, especially if I can do that without a car. If your wedding is in the middle of nowhere, I would probably spend the night before and the day after in the nearest big town/city which means I would end up in three different hotels before the trip was done, and that is an awful lot of dragging luggage around and a lot of logistics to manage.
For the PP whose reception is 4 hours away from the ceremony, i hope that is a typo; if it’s not, it’s really not very guest-friendly and I would probably skip the ceremony and just go to the reception.
Post # 11
Interesting question, I never really thought of that. I thought it’d be more important to make sure the venue is close to where people are staying. But I’ve only lived in big cities and am fully accustomed to being with a half hour of an airport at all times so this is not something that would ever cross my mind. That said, as a guest, I wouldn’t be terribly pleased if I had to drive more than an hour from the airport to whereever I’m staying. Likewise, I would likely be cabbing it to the wedding (no drinking and driving) so I’d hope the wedding is someplace that wouldn’t cost me an arm and a leg in a taxi.
Post # 12
KC-2722: Horseradish: if it’s a 6 am ceremony with a 4 hr away reception the next day, I’d skip the ceremony as well. I might not make it to the reception of it’s a Sun. evening reception.
Post # 13
annabanana85: Our wedding is about 30 minutes from the airport and we reserved the block of rooms near the airport. It is important to my fiance so we will be looking into providing transportation. I havent really looked at it much so I cant offer prices or how it would work. We did include the distance/time from airport to hotel and hotel to venue on our wedding website so people wouldn’t be surprised by it.
Post # 14
We are having the wedding in my hometown, so roughly 90% of people (ourselves included) are either flying in or road tripping it. The airport is roughly 1.15 hours away and its an evening wedding in a small town. Though we will be providing food, drinks, music, and lawn games (Outside wedding). It’s in September so the weather will stay nice. But because our total budget is 2k we are NOT providing transportation.
Post # 15
We will have ~30 guests flying in (if all goes as planned…) so proximity to an airport was actually something we considered when planning our wedding! We were looking at areas outside of our home county due to cost, but were trying to focus our “shopping” near major airports. It ended up working out great, and I feel better knowing that my guests won’t have to struggle to get to our wedding. The venue is about 20 minutes from a major airport.