WHAT will be the vibe of your wedding and would you choose One&Only in Desaru, St Regis in Langkawi, a castle in France, a palace in India or even Tenerife El Duque beach in Spain for your wedding destination.
It’s your special day and it’s a once-in-a-lifetime (two or three times for some) experience.
Do you want it big and loud, glitzy and glamorous to make you feel like a show or go for a simple ceremony to save money for your post wedding trip.
Destination weddings are certainly all the rage and there are plenty of destinations in Malaysia to choose from.
A 25-year-old wedding planner said she had managed a local beach destination wedding for a couple for RM25,000 for 40 guests, and one on a yacht for RM50,000 for 30 guests before Covid-19.
The choice of the type of wedding you want is really up to you; this is how much you are willing to spend on the special day.
“We are still deciding for Langkawi and Phuket. Even if we earn in pounds, cost is a factor in the decision making as we will have guests and family joining us at their own expense,” said Monica (not her real name).
At the height of the pandemic, only 10 guests, including the couple, were allowed. The easing of restrictions has meant bigger crowds at weddings, but for the couple it’s still a challenge knowing who to leave out.
“I really didn’t know who to leave out because my mother wanted to invite all our relatives. I had my own list and it was difficult.
“So, we decided to divide the list according to the ceremonies. We also opted for a communal lunch and skipped the reception dinner to cut costs,’ said Dr Raj (pseudonym).
With the easing of restrictions, there is a surge in weddings as those who have waited two years to get married do so to avoid any future delays due to a possible lockdown.
For some, cost is an important factor, for others it may be the least.
Recently, K-drama darlings and Crash Landing on You couple RiRi – Hyun Bin and Son Ye Jin – tied the knot in a fairytale outdoor wedding at a luxury hotel overlooking Mount Acha and the Han River in South Korea.
Their wedding bill could have reached more than 100 million won (RM343,000) with a delicious eight-course menu including osetra caviar, grilled lobster and South Korean beef tenderloin, according to reports.
At Paris Hilton’s wedding last November, guests were served gold leaf potatoes among other extravagant delicacies.
When one of Asia’s richest men, Mukesh Ambani’s daughter, got married in August 2020, the reported cost was over US$100 million (RM422 million) as he spread over several days with multiple events in several cities.
You can call it an extravagance, but that’s what they wanted because their budget was unlimited.
Don’t underestimate weddings in Malaysia either. Some make it so special that customers can remember it even after a decade.
“Weddings have become somewhat intimate with fewer guests since the pandemic,” said Evan Chee, founder of Precious Moments Wedding & Events Planner.
She said, when it comes to trends, it depends on the couple’s budget.
“A couple normally gives us a budget and we work with that to choose the location, the menu, the decor and the like,” she said.
If you can afford it, go for it, but if you’re going to go into debt for a wedding, then you have to think twice.
Going into huge debt just for the glitz and glamor of a wedding is fine if you can afford to repay the loans, but if you can’t, it will become a burden on your marriage.
“It’s just too risky and who are you trying to please, yourself or others?” said another wedding planner.
He said, you can have a wonderful and memorable wedding no matter what your budget.
You can either get a planner or plan it yourself. Know what type of wedding you want and be honest about how much you really want to spend.
A wedding is a very personal thing and requires detailed planning. A checklist is essential and the budget should include the cost of the venue, attire, photography, ceremonies, reception, decorations, invitation cards, wedding cake, sundries, etc.
Break down the budget to the smallest item.
To reduce costs, you can limit the guest list, organize a joint reception and choose a venue that does not cost too much.
Whatever you decide is your day and your money.