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A bride and groom stand on a boardwalk that runs alongside a small riverA bride and groom stand on a boardwalk that runs alongside a small river

Destination Wedding How-To: Your Most Popular Questions Answered by Experts

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Destination Wedding How-To: Your Most Popular Questions Answered by Experts

A destination wedding is an exciting—and trendy—idea but there are certainly a lot of questions about how to pull one off. Luckily, Nassau Paradise Island is not only home to stunning Bahamas wedding venues, there are plenty of event and wedding planning specialists to help make sure all of your wedding dreams come true. We reached out to some of them to get some of your questions answered so when it comes time to plan your wedding it will be as easy as a Bahamas breeze.


Q: What is a destination wedding?

Here’s our destination wedding definition: A destination wedding is a wedding held in a setting away from the place you call home. It’s an opportunity for a couple to celebrate their marriage in a stunning setting surrounded only by those closest to them. Not only that, a destination wedding provides a chance for a couple and their guests to spend time together on vacation, enjoying each other’s company and everything the destination has to offer.

Q: Are destination weddings expensive?

They don’t have to be! Talk to your desired venue about wedding packages. Often, if a minimum amount of rooms are occupied, a couple can receive substantial discounts—including a complimentary stay! Despite travel costs, the small size of a typical destination wedding cuts down on food and beverage costs, and with a breathtaking Bahamas beach as your backdrop, it’s easy to create a beautiful ceremony and reception atmosphere without spending much on décor. 

Q: How do I get a marriage license for my destination wedding?

There are several requirements for obtaining a marriage license in The Bahamas. Same-day licenses can be issued however typically it takes two business days to get your marriage license once you’ve applied, so you’ll want to get that checked off your list shortly after you arrive. You cannot apply for a marriage license by mail and both parties must be in The Bahamas for a minimum of 24 hours prior to the date of the application. The cost of a marriage license in the Bahamas is $120. You’ll need a photo ID and proof you’ve been in the Bahamas at least a day, so make sure you bring your passport with you.

Q: Are destination weddings legal?

Yes, if you have a marriage license issued by the Bahamas Government. Your Bahamas marriage license will need to be signed and witnessed. In order to be considered legal in your home country, an Apostille may be required (at an additional cost). The wedding planner at your chosen venue can assist you with this, so be sure to ask about it during your planning sessions.

Q: What should I include in destination wedding invitations?

It’s customary to include information on the destination, hotel or resort, as well as any special events that will be taking place prior to the big day. One thing that is nice about a destination wedding is that it is a break from tradition, allowing your invitations to be a break from tradition too. So inject your wedding invitations with some personality! Make them unique to you and evocative of all the fun you’ll be having when you’re together at your special destination.

When you start to think about all of the information you need to include in your destination wedding invitation, it can be overwhelming! Remember to keep it simple and straightforward. You want your guests to be as excited as you are!

Instead of trying to fit all of the information on a traditional wedding invitation, consider including multiple cards, each highlighting a different detail of your nuptials.

Keep your requests clear. Guests need to know when and how they can RSVP, when and how they can book their trip.

Q: When is the best time to book my destination wedding?

With over 300 days of sunshine, there really is no bad time to have your destination wedding in The Bahamas. As is the case with wedding trends in general, destination weddings in The Bahamas usually take place during the spring and summer—wedding season. 

Chairs arranged for a wedding ceremony on a beautiful patio with an ocean view.
The turquoise waters of the Bahamas provide a stunning backdrop for your wedding ceremony.
Q: What are your top destination wedding etiquette tips?

Unlike our crystal-clear waters, destination wedding etiquette can be difficult to navigate. Some of our tips are:

  • Send your Save the Dates out as soon as you’ve confirmed a date and location. This ensures your guests have ample time to make travel and vacation plans.
  • Work with your venue to reserve a block of rooms for your invited guests. This will make booking much easier for them.
  • Include travel, hotel, and group rate information, as well as any information about events leading up to the wedding on a separate card from your invitation.
  • When it comes to who you should invite to your destination wedding, keep it simple. Typically, destination wedding guest lists include close family and friends—your nearest and dearest whom you can’t imagine getting married without.
Q: Are there any destination wedding packages available?

 Many wedding venues in Nassau Paradise Island offer wedding packages—and some can even be tailored to your needs. A wedding package can save a lot of planning hassle. Many include the dedicated services of an onsite wedding coordinator, a photography session, all of your ceremony needs, including officiant and marriage licensing, and some even include extras such as ground transportation for you and your guests and champagne toasts.

Q: What’s the best size for a destination wedding?

One of the advantages of a destination wedding is that you can keep the guest list small without causing insult. It’s accepted that if you’re traveling to a destination, you won’t be inviting the extended family to join you. So be discerning and invite only those you want to spend some quality time with and who you can’t imagine your Special Day without.

Q: What’s your number one tip for couples looking to plan a destination wedding in the Bahamas?

Take advantage of local expertise! Destination weddings are popular for a reason—they’re worth it! Event planners help you take care of all of the details of your big day, you get to spend quality time with the loved ones in your life (not to mention some quality time on our stunning beaches!) If you think a destination wedding is for you, click here to learn more about planning a wedding in Nassau Paradise Island.

For more destination wedding inspiration, check out these articles:

11 Photos to inspire your Bahamas wedding.
Quiz: Is a Destination Wedding Right for You?
Wondering if a destination wedding is for you? Our quick quiz can help you decide.
Destination Wedding Inspiration: Bahamas Wedding Photo Roundup
Nassau Paradise Island: The Perfect Place For Your Destination Wedding