HOW TO LOOK AFTER OVERSEAS GUESTS
For guests travelling extra miles for your wedding, here are five ways to show you’re extra glad they came.
Show them you’re glad they came
1 Create a wedding website
Unless you’re a seasoned traveller or have a penchant for spontaneous trips, it’s unlikely you’d jet off to uncharted waters with no information about your destination or what you’re doing when you get there. If some of your guests are travelling from overseas, a simple way to provide them with info about your big day is by creating a wedding website, suggests wedding planner and stylist Becks Murray (envyevents.co.nz). Including basics such as the time and date of the big day (along with maps, accommodation options and things to do in the area) will help them feel informed and at ease.
2 Tailor accommodation to suit all budgets
If you have a reasonable-sized group of guests travelling from overseas, or even from out of town, consider finding out whether accommodation options in the area offer discounts. Often, they will provide concessions for groups. If not, compile a list of options that offer a variety of rates. Your guests will have different budgets; some may like the option of splashing out on a luxury villa, while others will be happy to share a cheap and cheerful room with a couple of friends.
3 Add a little personal touch
There’s nothing like a surprise gift to make guests feel special. Consider organising a care package for them on arrival at their accommodation, complete with a handwritten note for an extra touch. Think about what’s unique to your location and tailor the package accordingly. For example, if your guests have never been to New Zealand, a block of Whittaker’s chocolate or a bottle of wine from the local region would set the tone perfectly. Keep the season in mind too; a mini tube of sunblock for a summer wedding, or perhaps some lip balm for the cooler months. Complete the care package with a mini guide to the area and a list of things to do.
4 Make transport super easy
Guests travelling from afar will have already spent money just getting to your wedding, so it can be a great idea to organise a pick-up from the airport to their hotel, and then on to your venue. And by having transport already sorted, guests who are unfamiliar with the area can relax in the knowledge that they are headed in the right direction.
5 Extend the invite
If you’re thinking about holding a rehearsal dinner before the big day, consider extending the invite to overseas visitors. “Big rehearsal dinners or next- day brunches are a great way to spend more time with these guests,” says Becks. This gives you the opportunity to have some fun with people you may not see a lot of on the wedding day, and gives your overseas guests the chance to get to know other attendees ahead of the main event.
Sometimes, it’s the smallest touches that make the biggest difference. Particularly if you don’t have much time to spend with guests who have travelled from afar, a humble gift will leave no doubt that you appreciate their presence.