When you’re planning your wedding, all-inclusive weddings definitely sound like the way to go. After all, who wants more decisions? Not you! Instead of making a million choices about everything from the menu to the napkins and maybe even more importantly what it will cost and who is footing the bill (sound familiar yet?!) – these wedding packages do it all for you. All you have to do is show up and enjoy your dream day!
So are they worth it? Is everything that sounds too good to be true actually that good, or will the grass always be greener? We turned to our community of brides on The Knot to find out what they’ve experienced at all-inclusive weddings.
Make Sure You Know What’s Included
Some all-inclusive wedding packages may be stripped-down versions of a typical wedding. For example, you may have to choose from a very limited menu (think plated dinners instead of buffet-style food stations) and there may be restrictions on decorations like décor, centerpieces and even the wedding cake. One popular example is The Abbey Package an all inclusive wedding packages in San Diego. Be sure to check them out to get an idea of a typical all inclusive wedding package. There’s also the chance that you won’t get your dream ceremony or reception locale, or that there will be limitations on photography and things like your first dance song. Make sure to read the fine print so you know exactly what’s included, but also keep in mind that certain elements may be limited because it keeps costs low for everyone involved.
Typical Items Included in a Wedding Package
You’ll likely want a professional photographer at your wedding , but you may not think about it when you’re signing on for wedding packages. If possible, try to find out who the included photographer is before you sign on for a package so that you can make sure they are someone whose style matches your own. You’ll want to be sure they are experienced in photographing weddings as well as all the specifics (like candid shots as well as posed photos, and what to do for the cake cutting, bouquet toss etc.)
You’ll typically get a choice of caterers with an all-inclusive, but if you have a specific caterer in mind that may not be included. Make sure to consider how the cost of the food will affect your entire wedding budget before signing on for an all-inclusive. Also make sure to ask questions about how your guests will be presented with their meals—do they come out all at once, or staggered? Will there be a vegetarian option? These are all questions you should have the answers to before your wedding.
Venue and Rentals
The venue and rental items included can vary widely depending on which package you choose. It’s important to consider the location of the ceremony and reception, as well as any rentals that may be included in your package. Are there restrictions on where you can have your ceremony or what time of day it can take place? Are all venues included in the package, or just a certain amount? Is there a choice for indoor or outdoor venues, or is it based on availability.
Tables and Chairs
You may have to bring all of your own chairs, but typically tables are included in the price. Make sure you know how many seats are provided before choosing a package so that there aren’t any surprises on the big day. Also ask about chair covers and table linens—you may be required to provide these items or rent them yourself.
Your wedding package may include tablecloths, napkins and chair covers. If you want a more formal look with overlays or chargers, ask if these items are included in the cost or if they will be deducted from your final payment amount. Don’t forget to consider your cake-cutting setup as well—you may need to bring the table on which your cake will be displayed.
Usually a wedding package includes basic centerpieces so that you don’t have to worry about flower arrangements on the big day. Make sure you know what types of flowers are included and how many vases you’ll get so that there aren’t any unwelcome surprises when it’s time to decorate.
Your wedding DJ or band may be included in your package, but sometimes you’ll have to pay for this separately or provide your own music. Make sure you know what the restrictions are on your playlist before choosing a package so that it can work within your budget and meet all of your needs.