So before you all get up on your high horses and judge brides for planning the wedding that they envision and claim that this is all in selfishness, you should probably think about it from their perspective. Just like you said a destination wedding is a choice, so is attending one. You think it's selfish, then just don't go. At least the wedding couple is giving you a beautiful place to travel to instead of asking you to spend a similar amount of money travel to a wedding in someones backwoods hometown... Just another side to think about.
@coop4321 - Ok no....you do not need to establish residency (if you're both from the U.S.), your ceremony does not need to be in Spanish, and you do not need to return 30 days later to get your paperwork - you can get it the same day or a couple days later. I don't know who/where your information is coming from, but it's incorrect. It's not that hard to get married there. You have vision blinders on. You want a swanky beach wedding in Mexico, but you don't want to put in the work, so you're willing to literally lie to the most important people in your life to make it happen. WAKE UP. Have some integrity. Either get married in Mexico or don't, but don't lie to your family and friends. Oh and also, not telling people is lying by omission.
I really don't understand why people think it is so difficult to make a marriage legal in Mexico. So, there are two things- being there ~3 days before the ceremony and the blood test. Many resorts will act as a middle man for the paperwork to reduce the time frame you need to be in country and even do onsite blood tests. However, one thing specifically gets me - the 3 day in-country requirement. Most couples I know took around that same amount of time off before their local weddings for preparations/last minute issues. I'm pretty sure blood tests and paperwork would fall into that preparation category. Also, if guests are traveling overseas for the wedding, they are most likely taking 2-3 days off prior to the ceremony to be there to witness it (a day of traveling, a day of buffer in case of a delayed flight). So, if your guests have to do it, you can too! I personally did not get married the day I stepped foot in Australia. We did not have a residency requirement because of the paperwork done up front (amazing what can be coordinated from afar), but I wanted that time to beat jet lag, relax, and have time to sort out any last minute details (meeting my photographer for the first time, meeting the wedding coordinator for the first time, etc). I really liked having that time to just enjoy my H before he really became my H!!