In my last blog I gave an introduction to weekend weddings and in this one I will cover the details to consider when planning a weekend wedding.
A weekend wedding gives you the chance to experience so much more with your guests, but it gives you so many opportunities to be creative as well. You may want to show more personality in certain elements but try to create some synergy across the weekend to elevate the guest experience. This can be achieved through sticking to a wedding style, using bespoke stationery for the weekend for example.
The first thing you must do is set a budget. This is an important element in planning any wedding and with a weekend wedding it enables you to breakdown how much you want to spend on each element of the weekend.
Weekend Wedding Venue
When planning a weekend wedding you may find a venue that can hold the various parties but can only accommodate a small number of guests to stay, this is fine as long as you allow for this and ensure that there is other accommodation close by. By preparing elements like the Welcome Bag (detailed in last week’s blog) and leaving it for them in their accommodation, they can still feel included in every part of the weekend.
If you want all guests to be able to stay on site and have all the weekend’s events take place in the one venue then try and choose a venue with more than one party space. Whilst you may re-use many spaces at the venue, it is nice to keep your main wedding reception space unused until the day itself. It just keeps the surprise and adds to the anticipation for the big day!
Give guests an indication on what they may need to pay for by carefully describing the weekend’s activities in your stationery, for example ‘the evening’s reception will be hosted by …’.
Give guests an idea of the dress code for the weekend, especially if they will be taking part in activities. Let them know as much information as needed to be prepared, but you don’t have to give them all the details if you want to retain some element of surprise.
Provide guests with the above information and all the key details as soon as possible to give them as much notice as possible to prepare as needed. You should show understanding to guests that may not be able to attend all elements of the weekend for whatever reason. It can be quite a commitment for guests and sometimes work or family responsibilities can make a weekend stay difficult.
A weekend wedding, essentially multiple events, can be extremely challenging to deliver logistically and is something too complex to leave to friends or family. If a wedding planner is within budget that would be my best tip.
Not only is a wedding planner going to plan the weekend with you but they will be there to deliver all the elements with the chosen suppliers. They will also act as a secondary host, there to help greet guests on arrival and then available for guests to speak to with any queries they have over the weekend. They help to make guests feel welcome and at home.
The all-important Welcome bag – see last week’s blog for more information on this and an introduction to a schedule of main events.
If you are planning activities for guests, then make sure you consider transportation to each activity. If you are not providing the transportation, ensure you include information of the possible options in guest’s welcome bags.
Whilst you will want your guests to have great experiences during your weekend wedding you should ensure that you include plenty of free time. If guests are spending 3 or 4 days away they will want some time to themselves to use as they wish. This will also give you some time to yourselves which you will likely need too!
If you need more information on a schedule for a weekend wedding (as well as some extra tips) then check out last week’s blog.
If you need any advice or planning assistance, then please do get in touch. I also have my Wedding Planning Power Hours and Planning Training available in my online shop if you would like some bespoke 1:1 advice and tips.