As soon as you announce your engagement, everyone immediately asks, “So when’s the date?!” It’s like you don’t even have time to breathe, or much less get to enjoy being engaged for any length of time. Don’t let this question pressure or rush you into picking a wedding date. There are several things (10 to be exact) that you and your fiancé should consider when setting your wedding date.
1. Season. Are you wanting an indoor venue or something outdoors? An old church like Kings Chapel, a rustic barn like Samary Plantation, or a downtown at The Bridge Building? The style of your wedding and season go hand in hand. So be sure to decide on your style and pick the season that will best fit your vision.
2. Budget. I’ll let you in on a little secret: there is a wedding peak and off season! Did you know it’s cheaper to get married in November or December rather than in June? Typically, the winter months will cost less. Consider setting a date in the off-season. Also, another way to save money is to get married on non-Saturdays- any other day of the week. You will be surprised how much you could save by having your wedding on a Friday or Sunday instead!
3. Destination. Debating on having a tropical beach wedding? Definitely check the weather patterns of the place you are considering having your wedding. Hurricane season affects the Caribbean and much of the Southeast, the South can have extremely hot/humid summers, the North has harsh winters, and the West Coast is basically perfect year round. Destination weddings are usually smaller and intimate. So if you are planning a large destination wedding, consider the flexibility of your guests. Destined2Wed specializes in honeymoon and destination wedding planning!
4. Your Schedule. This is direct towards planning the honeymoon. Most people are off on the weekends so the wedding isn’t a problem. However, if you are wanting to take a week long honeymoon, you will need to make sure you book a wedding and honeymoon dates according to your flexibility in your schedules. I highly recommend not setting a wedding date when you know you will be busy at work. That’s double the stress!
5. Significant Dates. Remember 11/12/13? Well, that was one of the most popular wedding dates of 2013. Picking dates like this one will make it easy to remember your anniversary. The next opportunity will be 12/13/14! Rather than picking a date that’s easy to remember, you could also select one that holds significant meaning to you and your fiancé.
6. Venue Availability. Some venues book up quicker than others. So if you are absolutely set on a particular venue, then you will need to check their availability as soon as possible. Popular venues in Nashville book up 12 months in advance. Depending on the venue availability, you may have to be more flexible on your wedding date.
7. Guests’ Schedules. You don’t want to plan a gorgeous wedding and then none of your guests are able to come. It’s very important to consider your guests schedules when setting a date. This is a main focus if you are having a lot of out of town guests. If you are picking a non-Saturday date, consider those guests that may have to take off work to travel.
8. Photographer Availability. If you love a certain photographer, be sure to check their availability as soon as you start wedding planning. Photographers can only shoot one wedding a day (unless they have a team or associates), so it’s important to keep this in mind. If your favorite isn’t available, don’t stress! Be flexible because there are lots of fantastic photographers that will capture the important details and memories of your wedding day.
9. Health of the marrying couple and family members. If you or your fiancé, or any family members, are suffering from any ongoing health issues, be considerate of that when setting a date. You may want to get married sooner so an ill grandparent can be present for your special day? If so, be flexible when setting your wedding date to accommodate the VIP (very important people) in your life.
10. Holidays. There are pros and cons to getting married around the holidays. Pro: Friends and family may already be in town so it would be convenient for them to attend your wedding while being home for the holidays. Con: Families can be very busy during this time, and venue prices can also go up during this time. Many venue rent their space for corporate holiday parties, so that often causes the rental price to be higher during the Christmas and New Year holidays. Consider getting married on a holiday that will have a long weekend, like Labor Day. Everyone loves long weekends, and I’m pretty sure I’ve never heard anyone complain about getting to attend a wedding on a long weekend either. That means an extra day to relax…or recover!
***The 11th Rule: College Football. I’m writing to you from the Southeast region of the United States of America, home of SEC football. It’s a borderline sin to get married on a Saturday when a huge rivalry game is happening…and incase you don’t know, every single Saturday is a rivalry game in the SEC. Ladies, if you set your wedding date during college football season, please be prepared to have guests and groomsmen asking about and/or watching the game. Don’t be mad, but you will be sharing your day with a college game. Embrace it!
Thanks to Loverly for providing some great tips!