Picking the perfect date for an event is not an easy task. Picking a perfect wedding date is even harder. Since there are so many things to consider, I thought it wise to break some of the bigger ones down into five categories, designed to make the selection easier for any engaged couple.
First, is there a specific date and/or time of year you have in mind? Do you want the same anniversary as a loved one or do you want your anniversary to be at a different time of year than your birthday? Many brides with winter birthdays elect to get married in the summer. Why? When special days like holidays and birthdays are all together at one time in the year, none of these events seem as special. A recent bride with a November birthday told me she always felt less excited because the holidays were just after her birthday. For decades she was uncomfortable having all of her special moments squished together so she vowed she would never have a winter wedding. When did she get married in the end: July.
Second, when you begin to plan a wedding, there are times of the year, as well as days of the week, that are less expensive. You can have the same exact wedding on a Sunday afternoon, as you can have on a Saturday night, for a minimum of 25 percent less cost. When you have special things you want to include but are extra budget-conscious, this is definitely something to consider. It is also less expensive to fly on certain days. Knowing this may make it easier for your guests to join you for your celebration. Many couples elect to have a Sunday wedding nowadays so they can have a larger wedding and/or spend more time with their guests. Finally, if you are considering a destination wedding, this is also something to consider. When you are travelling far away for your ceremony, this gives you some cushion to deal with flights, weather, and other things that could impact your day.
Third, are the majority of your guests local or are they from out-of-town? If they are local, the timing of your wedding is much easier to accommodate many people. If the majority of your guests are out-of-towners, many couples elect to have their wedding on a holiday weekend. This way they have more time to spend with their guests, the wedding becomes more of a destination wedding for out-of-towners, and the excitement is sometimes bigger, since weddings traditionally have a lot of guests that couples see infrequently. A recent wedding in Washington, D.C. was planned for Fourth of July weekend. The wedding was turned into not only a celebration of the couple, but a celebration of America as well. The couple planned activities for their guests all weekend. The celebration began with the Fourth of July festivities on the National Mall and ended with a brunch at the famous Mayflower Hotel. This was a weekend to remember…and all on budget!
Fourth, are there guests you want to have at your wedding who are not in the best health? If so, it may be important to take this into consideration when planning your celebration. Depending on the health issues, ages of those you want at your wedding, and the relationships you share with these people, you may want to either get married sooner so they can participate, or push back your wedding date to accommodate their recovery. Many couples take this into consideration when it comes to grandparents and great grandparents.
Finally, and equally important, is the weather. Planning an outdoor wedding? You definitely need to consider and consult the Farmer’s Almanac. Many people want garden weddings but don’t plan around a rainy season or an outdoor wedding in the Fall, but don’t take a possible early winter into account. While there are no guarantees when it comes to weather, it is possible to hedge your bets. For outdoor weddings, always have an indoor backup whenever possible.
In the end, regardless of when you decide to get married, your day will be both special and beautiful. Thinking about some of these issues before committing to a date can make the planning easier and far less stressful. While these are not the only considerations when picking a date, they are certainly ones to work through with your wedding planner.