A destination wedding is a perfect way to spend time with loved ones and explore a new place. But, what does it cost? The average cost of a destination wedding varies depending on location, but there are some things that don’t change no matter where you go.
It’s time to get that destination wedding budget figured out, start up that wedding planning, and save money. In this blog post, we will break down the costs for a typical destination wedding from ceremony to add-ons. Welcome to the Destify destination wedding cost breakdown!
How Much Does a Destination Wedding Cost?
A destination wedding can be expensive or inexpensive, depending on your budget. A tighter budget, on the other hand, does not imply that you must forsake opulent amenities or luxuries. It’s natural to assume that the bigger the expense, the more you should include on the bill. It’s important to remember, though, that you don’t have to spend a fortune to start arranging your stress-free dream wedding and vacation.
So, let’s answer how much a destination wedding is. A wedding costs about $14,685. The cost varies depending on destination wedding location and season – peak seasons are more expensive than low-season months.
The best part? Most wedding resorts include an expert on-site wedding planner to take care of all your big day needs.
Traditional Wedding vs. Destination Wedding Cost Breakdown
One of the most often asked topics at Destify is how much a destination wedding costs on average versus a local wedding. Most people believe that combining travel and wedding costs in an exotic place will cost a fortune, but this is not the case!
We compared the expenses of over 100 of our destination weddings to the costs of a local wedding and found that the vast majority saved significantly. The number of guests attending and the location of the wedding are the two most important aspects that influence the cost of a destination wedding.
A decent rule of thumb for your destination wedding budget is to expect roughly half of your guests to show up for your wedding, which is usually significantly greater for hometown weddings.
Destination weddings in Mexico, Jamaica, and the Dominican Republic are our most popular. We’ve chosen Mexico as our example destination since it has a large number of all-inclusive resorts and the beautiful beaches that our consumers anticipate.
With an average flight time of 5 hours from many major U.S. cities, it is also the most accessible destination we offer in terms of travel.
How Much Does a Destination Wedding Venue Cost?
The venue is the first major cost of a destination wedding. The average price for a solo ceremony on an island in the Caribbean Islands or Mexico starts at $13,000. However, this cancun wedding package all-inclusive prices varies with your destination wedding package. For instance, certain collections feature ceremony spaces that are both already included in the package and cost less than you might think.
Thinking of inviting a bigger crowd? For larger ceremonies on islands with more amenities, expect to pay anywhere from $15,000 – 20,000. On top of that you will need accommodations for your guests and catering.
How Much Does Destination Wedding Accommodations Cost?
Accommodation costs vary depending on the size of your guest list and location. For example, a Mexico wedding, Jamaican wedding, Caribbean wedding, and the Dominican Republic wedding with 30 guests may have an average cost between $150-$250 per person.
On the other hand, accommodations for larger weddings or those taking place outside traditional vacation spots can cost between $250-$350 per person.
For a destination wedding with 30 guests, this would be an additional minimum of $2100 to $4000.
How Much Does Destination Wedding Catering Cost?
A typical catering package for a destination wedding will start at around $50-$70/person for food and drinks; these prices can vary depending on location and menu. If you are serving a plated meal, the average cost for your caterer is $100-$130/person. And if you like to provide an open bar at the wedding, keep in mind that it will add about 30% more onto your total catering cost.
For destination weddings with 50 guests, catering can add on an additional $5000 to $8000.
Tip of the Day: All-inclusive wedding packages actually take care of your catering costs, as they are factored into your final bill.
How Much Does Destination Wedding Photography & Videography Cost?
Cameras and lenses are changing constantly, making it difficult for us to provide you with a quote. However, we do know that destination wedding photography will start at around $1500 – 2000 per photographer/day; or $2500 – 3500 for two photographers/day.
If you are looking to hire a videographer, factor in an additional $500 – 1000.
How Much Does Destination Wedding Flowers Cost?
Flowers can be expensive! For destination weddings on the beach or by the turquoise waters expect to pay between $75-$100 per stem of flowers, depending on the time of year and location. For a wedding with 100 guests you can expect to pay between $7500-$10000 for flowers.
However, you might be able to find better deals via local vendors who source flora exclusive to your preferred international wedding destination.
How Much Does Destination Wedding Invitations Cost?
Whether you order your destination wedding invitations from an online vendor or have them custom-made, they will cost around $0.30 – 0.40 per piece. The price will vary depending on the number of pieces ordered and if you add in extras such as ribbon, envelope liners or printed envelopes.
For destination weddings with 100 wedding guests, invitations can cost $30 to $40.
How Much Does Destination Wedding Cake Cost?
A wedding cake usually starts at about $100 per serving for a small, simple cake. If you are looking to add in extras or if it’s a larger wedding expect the price to jump up.
For destination weddings with 100 guests, this can cost between $1000 – $2000.
How Much Does Destination Wedding Ceremony & Reception Decor Cost?
You don’t have to leave your decorating to chance. There are many ways to decorate your destination wedding on a budget, look into renting items or get creative with inexpensive DIY decorations.
For destination weddings with 100 guests, this will cost between $500 – $1000 ; if you have more than 200 guests expect the costs to start around $1500-$2000.
How Much Does Destination Wedding Transportation Cost?
Transportation costs will depend on how your guests are getting to the destination wedding. Transportation for 100 people can cost anywhere from $1500 – $2000 depending on location, services and if it’s just one form of transportation or multiple.
If you have 200-300 guests expect this cost to be closer to about $3000-$4000.
For destination weddings with 100 guests, transportation can cost between $1500 and $2000. For larger destination weddings of 200 to 300 guests the costs will be closer to about $3000-$4000.
Fun fact: Your wedding party can stroll to the ceremony in style via on-site golf carts, free of any additional travel expenses!
How Much Does a Destination Wedding Ceremony Cost?
A wedding ceremony at a location away from home doesn’t have to break your budget. Depending on location, you can find beautiful locations for your destination wedding ceremony that won’t cost much at all.
For instance, your all-inclusive resort will most likely offer a wedding packages that enable you and your wedding guests to enjoy an ocean view wedding date.
For destination weddings with 100 guests this will be closer to about $1000 -$2000. For larger destination weddings expect the range start around $1500-$2000.
How Much Does Destination Wedding Reception Cost?
A large part of your destination wedding reception costs will be determined by the catering. The average cost for your caterer is $100-$130/person. And if you like to provide an open bar at the wedding, keep in mind that it will add about 30% more onto your total catering cost.
For destination weddings with 100 guests, this can start around $1000 -$1500 for a buffet style meal. For larger destination weddings expect the costs to start around $2000-$2500.
How Much Does Destination Wedding Cake Topper Cost?
The cost of your cake toppers will depend on how simple or elaborate you want them. You can find something as low as about $20-30 per cake topper.
For destination weddings with 100 guests, this will be closer to about $200 -$300 ; if you have more than 200 guests expect the costs to start around $400-$500.
Destination Wedding Cost Breakdown for Hiring Musicians
Depending on whether you want a band or an individual, musicians can cost anywhere from $500-1500. For destination weddings with 100 guests the costs will be around $1000-$2000 if hiring a full band.
For larger destination weddings of 200 to 300 guests the costs will be closer to about $2500 -$4000.
Example Free Wedding Package
- On-site wedding planners
- Several ceremony locations with contemporary wedding inspiration
- Room upgrade for the Bride & Groom
- Early check-in & late checkout for the Bride and Groom
- Special bracelet for the Bride and Groom with exclusive access to all 3 resorts
- Services of a Civil Judge
- Beautiful wedding cake
- 1 tropical flower table arrangement
- Tropical bouquet for the Bride and boutonniere for the Groom
- Ironing of Groom’s tuxedo and Bride’s gown
- Sound system and simultaneous translation of the ceremony if needed
- Marriage certificate in Spanish delivered by DHL
- Champagne for the group after the ceremony
- Romantic candlelight dinner with champagne for the couple
- Romantic breakfast in your suite
- Complimentary massage for the couple and use of water circuit
- Basket of fruit in your room during your stay
- Bottle of champagne in the room, twice during your stay
- Room service included for the couple
Example Upgraded All Inclusive Package
- Service of judge or minister
- Wedding organization and personal touch of on-site wedding planner
- Preparation and ironing of couple’s wedding day attire
- Complimentary room for one member of the wedding couple the night before the wedding (based on availability and upon request)
- Bouquet(s) and/or boutonniere(s) for wedding couple
- Two boutonnieres and two corsages for wedding party
- Sound system with speaker and microphones
- Hairstyling and makeup application for one member of the wedding couple for day of ceremony
- Wedding cake and sparkling wine (up to 20 guests)
- Private cocktail hour with hors d’oeuvres (Silver menu, up to 20 guests)
- Private dinner reception (Silver menu, up to 20 guests)
- One natural floral centerpiece for the sweetheart table (one)
- 36 full color photos and wedding album
- Special turndown service night of the wedding
- 15% discount on all spa treatments (Spa boutique purchases not included)
- Newlywed Package
- Welcome letter
- Fresh fruit
- Bottle of sparkling wine
- Breakfast in bed with mimosas (reservations must be made in advance with concierge)
- Late checkout for the couple (based on availability and upon request)
- Free anniversary nights
- Want to explore more of our five-star wedding properties? Follow the button below to discover our Destify Top Resorts: