I absolutely love destination weddings because the focus really becomes about the couple. Destination weddings often require lots of advanced planning and travel for your guests, their attendance alone to your wedding manifests that they are truly committed to witnessing your important union. I also adore the intimacy of destination weddings. Because of the inherent logistical reasons, destination weddings usually have less guests and I see this as a benefit as it really lends itself to surrounding yourself with the people most important to you.
Whether amongst the lavender fields in the South of France, or the vine covered hills of Tuscany, or even the sandy shores of the Puerto Vallarta, picking your ideal wedding location was probably the fun and easy part. Having a wedding abroad or in a place that is not your home market however, can be challenging, especially when choosing your dream vendors. The BIG question is “do I hire vendors that are local to where I am getting married or do I bring my favorite vendors along for the trip?”
We feel so fortunate to live and work near beautiful places such as Santa Barbara, the Napa Valley, and Sonoma County that are much sought after locations for people all over the world to have their intimate destination weddings. LoveSpun Films has become the choice of many who lean on us as a local expert in these areas to capture their big day and we love meeting all the wonderful folks who come to California to tie the knot.
But what about a wedding abroad? We have also had the opportunity to take our talents on the road and capture beautiful weddings all over the world, from Mexico, to Hawaii, England, France, and The Dominican Republic. In fact, filming destination weddings has become one our favorite specialties.
Along the way, we have gleaned information from experts about having destination weddings as well as gathering our own thoughts on working as destination wedding filmmakers and the stuff needed to get the job done. We thought for this post of “Tuesday Tips” we would share things to consider when choosing a wedding filmmaker for your wedding abroad.
1. Is the wedding filmmaker or videographer you’re considering a seasoned traveler?
Navigating foreign lands can be tricky and stressful but having a wedding filmmaker who is a savvy traveler can make getting to your wedding a breeze. Seasoned travelers are quick to learn and map out public transportation options before their trip and should plan to arrive with plenty of lead time to avoid travel delays. Experience can mean all the difference in the world when needing visas, permits, or passports to get to your wedding. While only domestic insurance is required for most videographers, an experienced destination wedding filmmaker will have a special global insurance plan to make sure their gear is protected as well as their clients.
2. Is the wedding filmmaker or videographer prepared to travel with all of that gear?
As someone who has personally felt the fatigue and pain of rolling heavy tripods through the cobblestone lanes of Paris, or the stress of traveling on the London Underground, trying to be as inconspicuous as possible with thousands of dollars of gear on your body, I can tell you that traveling with gear is a challenge all to itself. Over the years, we have learned by trial and error, the right amount of gear to bring and what can stay home. We have learned who makes the best travel luggage, the lightest monopods, and how to not draw attention to ourselves while lugging it across the world. Experience is certainly the best teacher and anyone you’re considering should have a good handle on how to travel with expensive and sometimes heavy gear.
3. Will bringing my wedding filmmaker from home be more expensive than if I just hire a local company?
This will depend particularly on the style and quality of filmmaker you are after and the location in which your destination wedding will take place. While there is not a clear answer without doing your own research, we have found that often our rates are competitive especially if we are going somewhere where the dollar is not as strong. An offset in currency exchange can sometimes even pay for the travel. The best thing to do is to inquire with the wedding videographer you are considering and get a custom quote with travel for your wedding. You might be surprised that it’s more affordable than you think and you will have the peace of mind knowing the reputation of the company you’re choosing to document this once-in-a-lifetime event.
4. How can language and cultural barriers affect the final product?
If you are an English speaking couple who will be married in another country, language barriers could be an issue. When working with your wedding filmmaker to discuss style and important aspects of your wedding day coverage things may get lost in translation. Some of our past clients have expressed to us that it was a great relief to be able to communicate freely about their wedding film both before the big day and just to know that when the wedding was over they could deal with someone back home for the post production and delivery process. There are many talented local wedding videographers in destinations all over the world and it really comes down to what you feel most comfortable with for your big day.
For your planning pleasure, we’ve also gathered up some articles from a couple our favorite wedding planners about the other aspects of planning a destination wedding:
“Planning a Destination Wedding Weekend” – Beth Helmstetter
We hope you enjoyed some of the tips and we are wishing you much success in your planning efforts! Make it a LoveSpunny day!