Destination Weddings Discussions

Destination Wedding HELP!!!

Hello everyone! I am trying to start planning on my April 2015 destination wedding. I have no idea where to start! Anyone have any advice on even how to start this process?? We are 95% sure we want to have in Rivera Maya Mexico but we may consider Puerto Rico which would make it easier for guest without passports. Any suggestions would be helpful! Thanks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



Re: Destination Wedding HELP!!!

  • Congrats! I'm planning a wedding in the same time frame! Picking locations has been really hard for me. There are so many great options. I think Rivera Maya is the most affordable location. I was really excited about Puerto Rico because it is less touristy. I ruled it out after a talk with a travel agent who pointed out the beaches are gorgeous but they aren't the white sand most brides picture in beach wedding visions. I hadn't really thought about it but once she put the thought in my head it kind of stuck. Also, flights to Mexico are cheaper so guest might come out even on that front. 
  • Thanks for responding! I feel so lost in this process! I was doing some research on my own yesterday and I think that Rivera Maya is going to be the place. How are you deciding what resort to book with? We have vacationed there several times so I am torn between going to a resort that we have been to and liked or going with a resort that we have not been to before but others have suggested. You said that you talked to a travel agent, was she (or he) helpful with choosing the right resort?

  • I am planning my DW for April or May of next year as well! Travel agents are helpful when it comes to choosing the resort. I research some on my own and then ask my TA to give me room rates and details about the resort. She has been great about giving me a document where she compiles all of the resort information so that I can compare my top choices. 

    Be aware that the Travel agents do tend to push for the resorts that they work with. Don't feel pressured by this. My TA stresses to me a million times that she doesn't usually recommend all the resorts I ask her about, but she still helps out! 
  • Picking a resort has been really hard for me. I have been looking at their wedding options and pricing to help and reading far too many reviews. I'm really trying the process of elimination method. I've talked to some travel agents who I really think have helped but each agent has their own few places that they sell and they all seem amazing! I was surprised that the agents pricing isn't really better than what I can find online but they do often have incentives they can throw in like spa credits. I'm waiting until the airlines release flight information so I can get actual numbers to figure in. Sometimes I'm glad I have over a year to iron out the details and other times I wish we'd just pick a place and go tomorrow lol. 
  • I am getting married this April in Riviera Maya.  When I first started I was open to almost all tropical locations for the destination wedding.  I ended up choosing Mexico becuase it's a more budget friendly option for our guests.  In terms of picking a resort I had a really tough time with that.  I started with what I was mostly looking for in a resort, I wanted a resort without high rises so it felt more tropical and I was looking for at least 5 restaurant options on the resort as well as a nice beach.  I utilized a local travel agent in my area which put me more at ease than a place like BBV (which I started using but then decided I'd rather meet with my travel agent in person than online).  Once I narrowed my choices down to 3 resorts I went on trip advisor to look at photos of all the resorts (i found the photos the guests took more helpful than the professional ones) as well as read the reviews.  Obviously you have to take some of the reviews with a grain of salt but I found it was easy to find the more practical ones. 

    And just as an FYI I ended up choosing the Valentin Imperial Maya.  It's not the most budget friendly option but it was the perfect fit for us and so far I have to say I'm extremely happy with my choice and the wedding planner down there (Ana) has been a dream to work with.  Good Luck and I hope this helps a bit!

  • venue venue venue. lock it in now. the rates are better the earlier you do it. I reserved mine last September and my wedding is this september in key west. I actually had to move the date by a week because the one i wanted was already booked a year in advance!
  • @Stephp13 Sounds like an awesome process. Rivera Maya def seems the most budget friendly location but I'm leery of the blood test required. Have you talked to Valentin about how they handle that? 

  • congrats kara!! we are getting married on Abaco in the Bahamas and i found that just googling the resorts we were interested in lead to a LOT of boards about travel and weddings for the places we were looking at. Tripadvisor has some great resources as well, just query the resort names and all the reviews, chat threads and info should come up. i also sent in a few RFPs (req for price) and actually talked to a few people which really helped because i did find a person i connected with and they were at my one of my tied for top choices so that really helped make the decision. we have been working on this since november and just nailed the location down so take your time, it is a VERY important decision!! good luck!! PS LOVE LOVE LOVE Riviera Maya one of my fave places to visit!!
  • I'm also planning Riviera Maya in Aug 2015!

    I'm meeting with a travel agent on Sunday to go over the resorts, I'm hoping she'll be able to help me narrow it down. I picked resorts based on what will be affordable for my guests (I looked at this year's rates), have decent TripAdvisor ratings, and I read a few reviews on

    I came up with Grand Palladium, RIU, Iberostar, Barcelo Maya. 

    I'm hoping that the travel agent can steer me in the right direction, I'm expecting 120+ guests and so I will do a private room and other cultural ceremonies so I'm hoping that there's a resort that can accommodate a big group!
  • MeghaKhareMeghaKhare member
    First Comment
    edited January 2014
    I'll prefer you to have it in Puerto Rico because it is beautiful place for beach wedding destination and rather than Rivera Maya Mexico.In Puerto Rico you beach wedding theme will be beautiful...If you want any help in your wedding invitation cards than you can visit.<!-- br {mso-data-placement:same-cell;} has beautifull beekbhbjknbvsdkjvsdkjvsdkjvsdkjvsdkjvsdkjvsdkjvsdkjvsdkjvsdkjvsdkjfx</style><!-- br {mso-data-placemen</style><!-- br</style>
  • Thanks everyone for the all the great information!!!! I am in the process of doing my own research and I am going to try to compose a list of resorts that we like and then go talk to a travel agent and see if that helps me narrow it down. What is everyones opinion about the blood test? Does that have to be done regardless? I am confused if you have a "legal" ceremony in Mexico if USA will acknowlege it or if you still have to get a marriage license in your hometown state?
  • I had a destination wedding, and my main advice is DON'T STRESS! I wrote a very detailed blog post about my experiences and some tips I learned along the way. Since it's way too long to reiterate here, you can read it at:
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