With the world wondering if Brad and Angelina are about to get married in a French chateau, now seems like a good time to look at overseas weddings.
Despite the recession, or because of it, weddings have been one of the few growth sectors in the travel industry over the last few years as they are often a cheaper option, costing an average of £6,585 compared to the UK average of £20,000.
Similarly agents, operators and overseas hotels are all very good at putting together packages to benefit from this lucrative market and will compete to out do one another.
So you can see how the benefits quickly stack up.
This has driven an increase in the market with Mintel reporting one in five British markets now take place overseas.
But on such an important day, you want the reassurance that things will go to plan which is why we at Holiday Truths have had a word with our friends at Thomson and First Choice to get some advice.
As the operators’ wedding manager for Cyprus, the most popular place in the UK for overseas weddings, Jeanette Salmon has seen more weddings than you average vicar.
And here’s her five top tips:
1. Research any paperwork you require to marry abroad and create a check list. Go through it three months before the wedding to give yourself plenty of time for last minute arrangements.
2. Prepare a play list on your iPod for your ceremony and the first dance you have as a married couple.
3. Calling all brides: make sure that your wedding dress is packed in hand luggage rather than the hold to ensure peace of mind.
4. Ensure you contact the resort you are travelling to ahead of your special day to discuss wedding extras or ask any questions.
5. Booking with a certified tour operator or travel agent will help you have a stress free wedding from start to finish. Which is what you want.
Other things worth doing are visiting the wedding venue before the big day with your wedding head on to ensure everything is as imagined.
Also try and make the visit at the time of the wedding, my friend and I did so for his wedding and discovered even at 4pm in the Caribbean the sand was too hot to stand on barefoot and some shade was hastily arranged.
And should Cyprus not take your fancy then do consider other destinations, Salmon reports Thomson’s next busiest destination is Mexico, followed by Rhodes, Italy and Turkey.