The cost of planning a large wedding celebration is one of the reasons why many couples opt for a destination wedding instead. Sure, you have to pay to travel to the destination of your choice. But once you’re there, the cost of your wedding may be surprisingly inexpensive. Wedding planning is already very stressful. With cost-saving measures, you can reduce some of the financial stress that comes with getting married.
This list of wedding destination ideas offer some great deals. You might be surprised when you see what you can afford when you forgo the traditional wedding path.
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Jamaica isn’t just the domain of spring breakers and cruise ship stops. Known for delicious food, balmy beaches, and majestic waterfalls, Jamaica is only a short flight away from most of the continental USA. It also happens to be rife with affordable wedding venues.
Among the most popular is Montego Bar’s Iberostar Rose Hall Beach, which offers the aptly-named “Meant 2 Be” package. This package comes with every detail you need in a wedding ceremony, right down to the post-ceremony champagne toast.
If you’re having some guests, this package starts at $1,499.
2. Dominican Republic
The Dominican Republic is known for being an affordable Caribbean vacation destination for couples and families, so it makes sense that it’s a wonderful choice for anyone wondering how to save money on their wedding.
Take, for example, the Dreams Royal Beach hotel in Punta Cana. Although the luxurious resort is 5 stars, it offers destination wedding packages that start at $999, which makes budgeting a breeze.
Located in the Lesser Antilles of the eastern Caribbean, Martinique offers fantastic weather, picture-perfect beaches, and a lush mountainous landscape. It’s a romantic combination that effortlessly lends itself to any destination wedding.
The best time of the year to get married in Martinique is between May and June. You’ll avoid the crowds and be guaranteed a temperature of around 78 degrees.
If you’re looking for wedding packages, Club Med offers options from around $2,000 per adult.
Mexico is a big country, but there are some areas more well-known for destination weddings than others. Puerto Vallarta, on the west coast, has great weather (if not a bit too warm in the summer months), but the packages are very affordable.
The Hyatt Ziva, for example, offers wedding packages that start around $1200.
Just because you’re having a destination wedding, it doesn’t mean that you have to leave the United States. Fortunately, there are plenty of options for affordable destination weddings within the country.
This desert state offers pleasant weather year-round and is home to a number of affordable wedding venues that offer package deals to travelers.
One of the most popular options is the Poco Diablo Resort, where package deals start at $110 per person.
Antigua is one-half of the country of Antigua and Barbuda, which is found in the Lesser Antilles. Like the other islands in its surroundings, Antigua offers gorgeous weather and beaches. It has a large port in its largest city of St. John’s, which makes it a popular stop for cruise ships.
Cocobay, a local resort, offers wedding packages that start at $2,500.
7. Las Vegas
Las Vegas might just be the most famous “destination wedding” location in the world. But there is a lot more to this city than chapels filled with Elvis impersonators (although if that’s what you want to do for your wedding, by all means, go for it). At the world’s first Elvis wedding chapel, prices start at just $199.
Las Vegas is home to luxurious hotels and sunny weather year-round. It is also a relatively affordable place to fly to from pretty much anywhere in the country, which your guests will appreciate.
The Bahamas are about as close to the United States as you can get within the Caribbean, located not even 300 miles away from Florida. The Bahamas is not one island but instead an archipelago of islands, with many resorts found on the island of Grand Bahama.
A wedding package at the Atlantis Resort, arguably the most famous resort in the Bahamas, will run you around $3,000 and up — more expensive than some other options on this list, but it could still end up less than a huge wedding elsewhere.
You may be able to cut wedding costs by using travel credit card rewards.
Florida is another great option. Destin is in the panhandle, where white fine sand beaches on the Gulf of Mexico are the norm. Gulf Beach Weddings offers the Intimacy Package for those looking to elope. That will cost around $1,195. Additional packages including guests start around $1,295.
10. St. Thomas
St. Thomas, in the U.S. Virgin Islands, is another viable option for anyone without a passport. The island is home to luxurious resorts, including the Ritz-Carlton, which offers packages that start at $4,000. It’s a good chunk of change, but for a once-in-a-lifetime event, totally worth it.
Your wedding is about you (and your spouse), so while it is important that you follow your heart, you should also keep some practical matters in mind. Does your chosen destination experience hurricanes? Will it be very hot at the time you’re visiting?
There is a lot to consider, but thankfully there are some affordable destination wedding options that may be the perfect place for you to say “I do” to help reduce the financial stress of your big day.
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This article 10 Affordable Destination Wedding Ideas (to Save Money on Your Big Day) originally appeared on FinanceBuzz.