California-Bay Area

Wedding in San Francisco, living somewhere else.

What would anyone suggest to do about having a wedding in San Francisco, but we live in Arizona, and managing guests, hotels, travel expenses, and being able to get everything done?

Thanks!

Re: Wedding in San Francisco, living somewhere else.

  • edited December 2011
    Do you have anyone living in SF? Maybe they could help you. You can still do it the only hard part is communication and meeting with the vendors.
    Anniversary
  • edited December 2011
    You might want to visit the Destination Wedding board -- there's a lot of advice there about planning from afar which applies regardless of your destination.  We did a DW ourselves, so here's the advice I would say:

    1.  Scope the local board (like you are doing).  Learn the venues.  Ask for advice.

    2.  Google the heck out of every possible venue.

    3.  Try to find a copy of the Bay Area Here Comes the Guide.  It lists every venue available...and then some.

    4.  Plan accordingly.  Send Save The Dates to your critical guests 6-9 months ahead of the wedding.  This lets them know of your plans so they have time to prepare for the travel. 

    5.  It is nice, but not required, to provide a Wedding Block Discount at a hotel of your choice.  Before you sign any minimum committments, poll your guests to be sure you can satisfy the required # of rooms.  If you don't go this route, it's a courtesy to at least recommend a few hotels near the wedding location, and to select ones at varying price points.

    6.  You can also get airline group discounts -- we provided our guests a discount code on 2 major airlines that flew to our destination.  7% and 10% on top of the listed web prices.  Not a huge savings, but every little bit is nice.  Check with carriers on what they might offer.

    7.  We used a wedding website to keep our guests updated on the plans, flight deals, etc.  We had this mostly ready by the time STDs were mailed, including the hotel block and flight block.

    I'm sure there's more, but hopefully it's a start that helps!
    image
  • edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/local-wedding-boards_california-bay-area_wedding-san-francisco-living-somewhere-else?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Local Wedding BoardsForum:602Discussion:7017c093-8465-4f53-9d46-bc525aedd8c7Post:51c925af-5014-420f-8567-16b9538c6005">Re: Wedding in San Francisco, living somewhere else.</a>:
    [QUOTE]You might want to visit the Destination Wedding board -- there's a lot of advice there about planning from afar which applies regardless of your destination.  We did a DW ourselves, so here's the advice I would say: 1.  Scope the local board (like you are doing).  Learn the venues.  Ask for advice. 2.  Google the heck out of every possible venue. 3.  <strong>Try to find a copy of the Bay Area Here Comes the Guide.  It lists every venue available...and then some</strong>. 4.  Plan accordingly.  Send Save The Dates to your critical guests 6-9 months ahead of the wedding.  This lets them know of your plans so they have time to prepare for the travel.  5.  It is nice, but not required, to provide a Wedding Block Discount at a hotel of your choice.  Before you sign any minimum committments, poll your guests to be sure you can satisfy the required # of rooms.  If you don't go this route, it's a courtesy to at least recommend a few hotels near the wedding location, and to select ones at varying price points. 6.  You can also get airline group discounts -- we provided our guests a discount code on 2 major airlines that flew to our destination.  7% and 10% on top of the listed web prices.  Not a huge savings, but every little bit is nice.  Check with carriers on what they might offer. 7.  We used a wedding website to keep our guests updated on the plans, flight deals, etc.  We had this mostly ready by the time STDs were mailed, including the hotel block and flight block. I'm sure there's more, but hopefully it's a start that helps!
    Posted by Tanq&Tonic[/QUOTE]

    You can also just go on the website. That is how I found my venue. It gives you all the information about the venues on there.
    Anniversary
  • leia1979leia1979 member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 100 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited December 2011
    If it's in your budget, I think a coordinator would help make things easier.

    I would also recommend Yelp.com as a good place to find vendors.
  • bethcarriebethcarrie member
    10 Comments
    edited December 2011
    I also recommend herecomestheguide.com.  You can search by type of venue, room capacity, etc. and bookmark your favorites- I found it very helpful.

    I think you either need to have someone in the area (relative, wedding party member, etc.) who is willing to check out a few things for you, or you could hire a wedding planner (try to use one who has worked on a friend's wedding, if you can- referrals are always safer if that's an option!)

    Or, best bet would be to book a few days in SF and schedule a lot of meetings for those days (top pick vendors, a couple of wedding sites).  You will have to do a lot more narrowing down of options on the internet to make this work, but it's possible.

    I live in NYC but grew up in CA, and my parents have so much going on with work that they don't have much time to help me with planning.  So I'm planning a trip this summer to try to plan some of the big stuff that's still undecided (caterer, dress, hopefully flowers)


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