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The Myanmar Times - - Wedding 2016 -

IMES have changed even when it comes to mar­riage in Myan­mar. In the past it was the norm for cou­ples to plan their wed­dings with help from fam­ily and friends. Th­ese days, how­ever, cou­ples in ci­ties like Yan­gon and Man­dalay are opt­ing to hire a wed­ding plan­ner to or­gan­ise the whole event. To a few, it’s even im­por­tant to hire a fa­mous one when money’s not an is­sue.

How­ever, if you do have a bud­get, there are many plan­ners and pack­ages you can con­sider. No mat­ter which you choose, one thing must be kept in mind: Wed­ding plan­ners need time to put it all to­gether, es­pe­cially those who are pop­u­lar. Usu­ally, a cou­ple would need to con­tact a plan­ner about five months to one year in ad­vance.

Ac­cord­ing to Thazin Min Khine, CEO of Ro­man­tic Wed­ding Plan­ner Ser­vices, “Some would give us only two months’ lead time and we have to rush the ar­range­ments. If you are busy or go­ing away on a trip, it’s best to hire a wed­ding plan­ner once you have de­cided your mar­riage date. With enough lead time, the plan­ner can start re­serv­ing a wed­ding hall and or­gan­ise things in a more sys­tem­atic way.”

Wed­ding bliss comes at a price. Some­times it takes up to a year to get a reser­va­tion at a pop­u­lar hall for the date re­quested, she said. She has about four types of pack­ages, and the prices range from over K3.3 mil­lion to around K10 mil­lion. The more elab­o­rate the wed­ding, the greater the work re­quired and the more it costs.

The bride and groom can dis­cuss in de­tail what ex­actly they want from the plan­ner, from the reception hall all the way through to the em­cee, in­vi­ta­tion cards, dresses, make-up, hair­style, jew­ellery, flo­ral dec­o­ra­tions, mu­sic, band and pho­tog­ra­phy.

As for lo­ca­tions, most cou­ples choose

wed­ding halls, but there are some who choose lake­sides, gar­dens and beaches, said Thazin Min Khine.

“In some cases, we need only give our rec­om­men­da­tion. For some, we have to give a pack­age deal. The bride and the groom tell us what kind of wed­ding they want and we then ex­plain the ser­vices [we pro­vide and how we can work to­gether],” she said.

Typ­i­cally, halls are rented for two hours for a wed­ding cer­e­mony and ho­tels of­fer ser­vices that in­clude food, flo­ral ar­range­ments and the back­drop, man­ager Su Myat from Rose Gar­den Ho­tel said.

“In some wed­dings, where they have a plan­ner, we have to ne­go­ti­ate with them on the ser­vices we of­fer and things they can ex­pect from us. It costs a min­i­mum of US$16 per head, in­clud­ing hall ren­tal charges. The to­tal cost would de­pend on the num­ber of guests in­vited.

“Cou­ples can make reser­va­tions any time, al­though it would be dif­fi­cult to

get a book­ing on the date they re­quest dur­ing the sea­son af­ter the Bud­dhist Len­ten pe­riod when there are plenty of mar­riages,” she said.

Ho­tels of­fer var­i­ous wed­ding pack­ages. For in­stance, at the Parkroyal Ho­tel, for a menu of tea and snacks, there are the Sap­phire, Ruby and Di­a­mond pack­ages, and this cov­ers at least 300 guests. If Myan­mar, Chi­nese, In­dian or Western menus are pre­ferred, the prices would be dif­fer­ent.

Ac­cord­ing to Thazin Min Khine, like in the old days, there are still some cou­ples who plan their own wed­dings, count­ing on the as­sis­tance of rel­a­tives and friends. Those that do pick wed­ding plan­ners have two rea­sons: Ei­ther they are too busy to make the ar­range­ments them­selves, or they don’t want to risk mak­ing the wrong choices. Wed­ding plan­ners’ charges start from as low as K350,000, and cer­tainly cost more the more the cou­ple de­sires.

Trans­la­tion by Kyawt Darly Lin

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