Top overseas wedding destinations for 2013

An overseas wedding is becoming increasingly popular for UK residents as, if planned correctly, they can cost a fraction of tying the knot in the UK. In fact the latest research into overseas wedding trends shows that one in five weddings now take place abroad but, with such a wealth of options on offer from a variety of tour operators, where are the best places to wed in 2013?

Italian glamour in Portofino

This picturesque Italian fishing village located near Genoa on the Italian Riviera doubles up as an upmarket resort famed for its celebrity visitors. It was the venue of choice for Wayne Rooney’s wedding to Colleen and also Rod Stewart’s marriage to Penny Lancaster back in 2007. You can create your own masterpiece of a wedding here whether you desire a small intimate wedding or a grand celebration for 100 guests. 

Best for…. Portofino has such a vast array of unique venues that you’ll be able to find a hideaway that you and your partner will both fall in love with which will be romantic, exclusive and stunning.  It’s also cheaper than you might think with flowers usually provided free by the venue and large group villas offering an economical alternative to UK hotels.

California dreams in San Francisco

San Francisco has superb pedigree as a place to get married as this is where Marilyn Monroe tied the knot to baseball player Joe DiMaggio back in 1954. San Francisco’s City Hall is a great spot with its grand staircases and huge rotunda dome dripping with marble and gold. You can also have your reception in Golden Gate Park with the famous bridge in the background of all of your wedding photos.

Best for…. a spectacular setting and a twist on the traditional US wedding destination of Las Vegas. You’ll still have all of the glitz and the glamour but none of the cheesiness!

Delightful nuptials in Dublin

Ok so it may not be as glamorous as some of the other destinations detailed here but Dublin certainly has its own unique charm and some stunning wedding venues for all budgets. If you want to go really glam then book Luttrellstown Castle where David and Victoria Beckham were married, posing for photos on top of two golden thrones. For something a little more affordable, Rosedale House just ten minutes’ drive outside the city offers a classic romantic location within magnificent grounds.  

Best for….Ease of getting your guests there. With flights from the UK cheap and plentiful, it should be relatively straightforward to get everyone there that you need for the big day.

Bohemian in Buenos Aires

Up until May 2012 either you or your fiancé had to be Argentine or a permanent resident of Argentina to get married there but the rules have changed and foreign tourists are now allowed to marry in the city of Buenos Aires. Back in 2011 singer Michael Buble wed his Argentinian girlfriend, actress Luisana Loreley Lopilato de la Torre in a civil ceremony.  Although it is difficult to arrange a traditional church wedding here, it is relatively simple to get married at a registry office and then focus everything on a big wedding party, a trend that Argentina is famed for.

Best for….A lively wedding reception party! Traditionally a wedding ceremony begins late in Argentina, sometimes from 9pm onwards so be prepared for a late night and plenty of dancing.

Final considerations…

  1. Check the material of the bridal gown is suitable for the climate of your wedding destination. Allow time for the garments to be steamed on arrival.
  2. Check the hand luggage allowance of your airline and carry suits or dresses in the plane’s cabin if possible. Some airlines allow you to reserve space in a hanging closet if you call ahead. If you are travelling with a budget airline, it may be worth sending the dress by courier to avoid it being damaged in transit.
  3. With lots of luggage and precious items you may want to drive to the airport to avoid the hassle of public transport. Companies such as Purple Parking offer alternative airport parking that will usually be cheaper than the airport’s own.
  4.  If you are transporting lots of luggage, Meet & Greet services are ideal as you can leave your car at the terminal and a driver will park it for you – and your car will be waiting for you outside arrivals when you return.
  5. Check your wedding insurance to ensure it covers an overseas ceremony.
  6. Don’t sign any contracts unless you have written quotes from venues and wedding planners.

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