Destination Weddings

Intro/Cruise Wedding

Hi everyone! My name is Briana. I am 24 years old. This is my first post on any boards, but you guys seem like a lovely bunch and my wedding fits in this discussion I think!

Jake and I have been together for just over 2 years and are planning our wedding to be on a Carnival Cruise this week, next year. It's literally a year from yesterday, how exciting! Anyway, we came to the decision to get married on the cruise (semi-eloping, inviting parents and 4 friends) after hearing the drama and everyone in our huge families getting involved over his sister's wedding in July. 

So far, we have picked the cruise dates (have not booked yet). We were just wondering if there were any other couples who were planning a wedding aboard a cruise ship and how you went about telling your family that you're not doing the big white wedding with only a few guests and that they would have to pay for the cruise themselves to come? I am just not sure how to approach the subject with his family. Mine is definitely easier to deal with!

Looking forward to getting to know everyone! 
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saric83

Re: Intro/Cruise Wedding

  • I'm not actually getting married on the cruise. But I am getting married during the cruise. At one of the ports. How is your planning coming along?
  • princessleia22princessleia22 Oceanfront Property in Arizona
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    I'm actually doing embarkation wedding on Carnival Dream in THREE DAYS!  So far I have been very pleased with the process. It has been SO much simpler and easier than a traditional wedding.  We chose to do embarkation wedding so that we could invite people to come to wedding without going on cruise.  But we do have our parents & siblings joining for the cruise. In total we have 12 people cruising and another 12 just coming for wedding then leaving before the cruise.

    My mom actually suggested it for us.  Our immediate family knew that we didn't want a big wedding. We just casually asked everyone what they thought of the idea before we really got hooked on it or really started planning too far into it. We decided early on that we wanted parents, siblings, and just a couple other people to definitely attend the wedding. If others couldn't come, we were fine with that, but we were willing to change plans for our immediate family. But, luckily everyone loved the cruise wedding idea. We picked a couple of itineraries that we liked: an awesome 7-day Western Caribbean or a 4-day Bahamas. We really wanted the 7-day, but figured that most people would choose the 4-day due to cost.  But, they surprised us and unanimously chose the 7-day cruise. They didn't mind paying for the cruise, because they didn't expect us to pay for their vacation. The wedding is just the excuse to take a vacation. We did have a few other people that would have liked to come, but weren't able to travel for it (for various reasons).  But, that was okay with us because we had the important people coming. We just did a co-ed shower to celebrate with my side of the family that couldn't come and we plan to do a casual BBQ back home in a couple months to let our friends back home hang out with "the new couple". If people ask, we just tell them that we just wanted a small, simple wedding.

    Hopefully your planning is going well. If you get a chance, check out the wedding & honeymoon forum at cruisecritic.com.  It stays pretty active and there is a wealth of info and advice for cruise weddings. I've found TK to be great for general wedding planning info, but the destination page isn't super active and you have even less luck finding info about cruise weddings here.


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    Knottie12725607
  • Hello there - I am new to these boards as well and planning a destination wedding cruise!  We are hoping to cruise to the Bahamas next Fall (2015) and get married on the beach OR in port, whichever is less expensive and best way to go.  We are having ourselves and our 3 kids for the ceremony and parents too.  We'll open it up to any other family and friends who can and want to go on the cruise.  My thoughts were to have a big dinner or something on the ship for the group that joins us, but ONLY us and our parents and kids at the ceremony.  We'd then have a big picnic/party at our house after returning. 
    We are also still open to the idea of having a wedding in the Florida Keys or something similar but not 100% set on any of these ideas yet.  As long as its a beach wedding, that's all that matters!
    We both have been married in the past and I have a one daughter, 9, and he has a son 15 and daughter 13.  The kids are definitely excited about the wedding.  We just bought and moved into our house (after renting an apartment for 2 years). 
    So I too would appreciate any feedback or info about a destination/cruise wedding!
  • princessleia22princessleia22 Oceanfront Property in Arizona
    Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 1000 Comments First Answer
    member
    Hello there - I am new to these boards as well and planning a destination wedding cruise!  We are hoping to cruise to the Bahamas next Fall (2015) and get married on the beach OR in port, whichever is less expensive and best way to go.  We are having ourselves and our 3 kids for the ceremony and parents too.  We'll open it up to any other family and friends who can and want to go on the cruise.  My thoughts were to have a big dinner or something on the ship for the group that joins us, but ONLY us and our parents and kids at the ceremony.  We'd then have a big picnic/party at our house after returning. 
    We are also still open to the idea of having a wedding in the Florida Keys or something similar but not 100% set on any of these ideas yet.  As long as its a beach wedding, that's all that matters!
    We both have been married in the past and I have a one daughter, 9, and he has a son 15 and daughter 13.  The kids are definitely excited about the wedding.  We just bought and moved into our house (after renting an apartment for 2 years). 
    So I too would appreciate any feedback or info about a destination/cruise wedding!


    Congratulations. I had cruise embarkation wedding last month... and it was awesome. I would definitely suggest checking out honeymoon & wedding forums on cruisecritic.com, as there is a lot of cruise wedding info there. Look into the packages offered by various cruise lines. Some offer beach wedding packages at port and some offer ceremony & lunch/dinner packages, rather than dancing/drinking reception, which sound like things you may be interested in.  Also make sure to check marriage license requirements if you want to get married at a destination port... some will have additional requirements to be met (wait times, blood work, etc.). Embarkation wedding is nice if you want to allow people to come to wedding without them going on cruise. Also look at the cruise lines to determine which line you want, since they all have different atmospheres.  Once you figure out what you want and book it, the cruise weddings are fairly simple. The cruise lines provide pretty much all the necessities. But, there are limitations on what you can customize, so if you are the type that wants to control every detail, cruise wedding probably isn't best option. And you may not know a lot of details until close to wedding.

    One suggestion I have, if you invite people on the cruise for your wedding, you should invite them to the actual wedding, not just dinner afterward. I'd be kind of upset if I paid to go on a cruise for someone's wedding and wasn't allowed to go to the actual wedding.  If you don't want a lot of people at wedding, then don't invite them to come along on cruise.  Just do the cruise with parents & kids, then have your party back home for everyone else.

    And definitely ask questions... ask on various forums, talk to cruise line wedding coordinators, etc., because there is a lot of information and help out there.

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  • @nicoann - thank you for the info and pointers!!!! I wasn't sure if having a ceremony on the beach at the port we stop in (Bahamas) it would allow for our guests to all be in attendance??? I'll have to get more details as I continue my research.  We already have family/friends that want to travel with us for our wedding wherever we go.  As soon as I mentioned beach wedding, they were like OH YEAH!  Which I can understand and would love for them to be there. 
  • princessleia22princessleia22 Oceanfront Property in Arizona
    Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 1000 Comments First Answer
    member

     

    @nicoann - thank you for the info and pointers!!!! I wasn't sure if having a ceremony on the beach at the port we stop in (Bahamas) it would allow for our guests to all be in attendance??? I'll have to get more details as I continue my research.  We already have family/friends that want to travel with us for our wedding wherever we go.  As soon as I mentioned beach wedding, they were like OH YEAH!  Which I can understand and would love for them to be there. 

    Most of the beach wedding packages will allow for several guests to attend. My wedding was on Carnival Dream and their typical package includes up to 20 guests, with per person cost for more guests (we had 25 guests, so paid per person for 5 extra people). If you book independently, they should still offer packages that will allow your guests to attend.

     

    Also, keep in mind, that a lot of people may get excited about the idea and plan to join you, but that can change when they start looking at logistics of it. We had decided that we would only do destination wedding if our VIP's (parents, siblings, and best man) were able to come. We showed them itinerary & costs, they all loved the idea, said they would be there, so we booked it. A month later, best man came back and said that it's more expensive than he thought (once he looked at flights, hotels, travel, etc) and didn't think he could go. We did end up getting him there (without his wife & kids) just for the weekend to attend the wedding, without going on cruise (we paid for his suit and helped where we could).  We also had a couple others that initially said they would go, but backed out... which was okay since they weren't on our VIP list (parents, siblings)  My advice is to plan what works best for you and your VIP's... the people that MUST be there.  If the others can come, that's great, but don't stress if the plan doesn't work for them. And some people may be upset that they aren't able to come. You will never make everyone happy. So, focus on what makes you happy and as long as your "must have" people are there, it should be a great day. 

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    Knottie12725607
  • Thank you again for that great info.  We threw it out there to our parents already about a cruise wedding so we'll present them with more detail soon and ensure they are good with that.  Our kids are definitely up for it! 
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