Planning a Destination Wedding Long Distance - MeewMeew Studios
Photo: MeewMeew Studios

So maybe you and your S.O. want to get married in your hometown across the country. Or, maybe you've got your sights set on a tropical destination across the world. Either way you're dealing with the task of planning a wedding long distance, which can seem scary just thinking about it. But it doesn't have to be! Before you get started, keep these tips in mind to make the process as simple as possible.

Make a checklist of "here and there" tasks.

Sending save-the-dates, touring venues, dress shopping, cake tasting...there's a lot that goes into wedding planning! The best way to start tackling it all long distance? Start by deciding what you can coordinate where you live. Your wedding dress, bridesmaid dresses and invitations may be easier to handle at home, while it's better to book vendors at your wedding location for the bigger things. If possible, hire a planner at your destination, or choose an all-inclusive location that takes care of services like catering and decorations.

Research vendors at your destination thoroughly.

The plus side of an all-inclusive? Often times wedding services are bundled, like food and event styling. But if you don't have that option, research alternatives within your budget and pay close attention to reviews from other couples. Most importantly, don't commit until you've had all of your questions answered from each vendor. 

Planning a Destination Wedding Long Distance - Jessica Bordner Photography
Photo: Jessica Bordner Photography

Send your inspiration boards to your vendors in advance.

While you can't be there to coordinate all the details, rely on your vendors to do so. Send photos and Pinterest boards of what you want, arrange Skype calls throughout the process and if possible, meet in person before your wedding date. While you can't be there throughout the planning process, sometimes it's okay to just let go — as long as you communicate your vision, trust your vendors to make it happen.

Keep your guests in the loop with a wedding website.

You may have done your research for the best vendors in the area, but don't leave your guests out! Contact hotels and lodging options in the area to reserve room blocks for your guests. Then, communicate all accommodation details to your guests via your wedding website, along with transportation recommendations or information and, if needed, alternative lodging. If things change for any reason, you can easily update it online for everyone to see. You can also use your site to keep track of RSVPs and encourage people to leave comments in your guest book (or even share travel tips for your destination).

Don't sweat the small stuff.

Sounds easier said than done, right? Though the actual wedding hasn't happened yet, accept that not everything will go 100% as expected (this also applies if you were planning a wedding close to home!). Whether the color of your linens isn't available, or the flowers you've dreamt of are out of your budget, don't focus on the bumps in the road — what matters at the end of the day is your marriage. So, if you find yourself stressing out over the details, step back, take a deep breath and don't be afraid to treat yourself.