1. LOCATION LOCATION LOCATION
Often when discussing weddings in Idaho location comes up as an element of the conversation. Idaho has so many perfect venues. The location of your wedding determines not only the theme and mood (rustic, luxury, elegant, formal, beachy) , but also determines the travel time and additional requirements to pull it off. Some of the venues in the beautiful destination communities in Idaho may not have onsite lodging and so additional elements need to be considered when finalizing the location. You want your guests to walk away talking about the great elements of the wedding. You want them talking about the activities, the food and yes the location. Choose a location that is fits who you are.
2. TIMING IS EVERYTHING
Unfortunately, the best weather in popular vacation destinations like the Coeur d'Alene area tends to correlate with tourist season. There are typically more crowds, fewer hotel rooms, and higher rates all around. If you choose to marry during high season, you'll want to reserve hotel blocks and venues immediately and send out save-the-dates 10 to 12 months in advance so guests can book their accommodations. While the off-season will mean fewer crowds, the weather can be iffy, and you may find that many stores and others close up shop. During busy seasons certain restaurants may not accommodate simple rehearsal dinner, but in the shoulder season they may offer you a substantial discount making the timing very important. Timing is everything. Also, check the timing of "MAJOR" community events. Community Festivals, etc... may also prove to equal bad timing in some destination communities.
3. TAKE A VACATION
We seriously can't recommend this enough! Most couples don't get that romantic getaway until after the wedding, but you chose a destination wedding for a reason so TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THAT! Take at least one planning trip (AKA planning vacay) and if you can swing it, two or three is ideal.
4. VET VENDORS CAREFULLY
You've viewed vendors' portfolios online and read their reviews, but how well do you know them? Many destination weddings you simply do not get the chance to meet your vendors ahead of time so how can you get to know them better ahead of time? SOCIAL MEDIA It's sounds like a simple solution and it is. You can learn so much more from a company on social media than you can from their website. Who are they engaging with? Whose pictures are they posting? Do they work well with other vendors? Are their brides tagging them? Whats their interactions with their brides? If you can't quite figure out your vendors than ask. Ask your venue about your florist. Ask your caterer about the DJ. Inquire to avoid disaster.
5. HIRE HELP
Wedding coordinators do so much more than figure out a timeline. If you are wanting a dream wedding and have chosen a location that is difficult for you to get to; HIRE SOMEONE. Hiring a skilled coordinator is worth it's weight in gold in a destination community.
6. TAKE CARE OF YOUR GUESTS
Arrange group rates for flights and rooms, list information for getting to and from the nearest airport to your wedding location. Invite everyone to the rehearsal or a welcome dinner and next-day brunch, and deliver welcome bags to their rooms. Pack the welcome bags full of essentials for the trip, like suntan lotion, water and bug spray. Perhaps include recreational guides and community attractions. Don't make them seek out "things to do."
You most likely chose a destination event because you loved Northern Idaho. You have chosen a destination wedding because of the majestic beauty in this beloved community. Don't miss out on that! Take some time and enjoy it. Take a break with your bridesmaids and throw in a spa day. Take a mini-moon and spend a few days after your wedding with your new spouse and ENJOY. However, you fit it in just take some time to enjoy this time.
Bliss Events | Design and Coordination www.blissevents.net
Ellie Asher Photo | Photography www.ellieasher.com
TK Production Films |Videography www.tkproductionfilms.com
Behrens Artistry | Hair and Makeup www.behrensartistry.com
Stevi Raff Cake Design | Cake
Wedding Gown and Tux | Daci at LaNeige Bridal
Flowers | Flora www.floramccall.com
Special thanks to: Standish Farms for COALY and your assistance, Vista Pawn for the canoe, and to Boise State University for the beautiful setting.