What are logistical things to consider with a destination wedding?
Every country has different requirements and processes for couples getting married. The couples will need to research these requirements and fill out necessary paperwork, often in advance. Some countries, such as Cuba, have rules where you have to be in the country a certain amount of time before the wedding takes place. Others require that the ceremony is done in the local language to be official–often the ceremony can be translated into English. Another thing to look into is if the documents produced in the country where you are wed are recognized by Canada. In many instances the paperwork is done in another language and you will be required to have it officially translated in order for your marriage to be recognized in Canada.
Another option is to be legally wed in Canada by a justice of the peace. No ceremony required, just the signing of the documents. Then you can have a ceremony in another country. When considering a destination wedding, the biggest struggles for couples are usually whether or not their friends and family can afford to celebrate with them. Many couples choose all-inclusive resort weddings that are perceived to keep costs lower and not dive out of their guests' travel comfort zones. In the process, couples end up compromising what they really want for the sake of their guests. More people are showing their own adventurous personalities with weddings in places such as Panama, Peru and all over Europe.
Is it becoming more common to ask people to help support our honeymoon in lieu of a gift?
As couples today most often live with each other before marriage, the old gift ettiquette of housewares is a thing of the past. Most couples already have everything they want and would love to ask guests to help support their honeymoon, but are conflicted between traditional rules and new-age weddings. People are getting comfortable asking guests for assistance with their honeymoon.
From a guest perspective, it is a gift you know the couple wants, they don't have to hurt anyone's feelings by not using a gift and there are no worries of duplicates. Couples usually announce their request for assistance with the honeymoon in the same way they would request cash instead of gifts. It is delicately printed on the bottom of the invitation with the travel agent's details, or spread by word of mouth through the parents and friends. But rather than just receiving cash that might be spent on bills, wedding, providing the couples with gift certificates means they will use it for a great trip they can customize themselves.
What's the most creative honeymoon you've ever helped plan?
I helped send a couple on a completely custom designed itinerary to Greece. They chose to combine their honeymoon to their dream destination with a stopover to visit family in the UK. On their trip they visited two of the less touristy islands, Corfu and Keffalonia, and then continued on to Athens where they did a Delphi and Meteora tour, before concluding their honeymoon with a few days of sweet romantic luxury at a beautiful hotel on Santorini. It was the perfect combination of adventurous and active, with a romantic, luxurious ending.