High-quality video is on my must-have list for every wedding, but it tops the list if you’re planning a destination wedding. Why?
A destination wedding is about the moment AND the experience. Video captures an experience like nothing else.
You’ve selected a fabulous location for your wedding. It’s not just going to be a wedding day, it’s a wedding adventure. You’re there to have a great time, and so are your guests!
Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way and decided that a wedding video is something you absolutely need for your destination wedding, let’s talk about how to make that happen!
Destination Weddings: Hiring Local Vendors
Hiring local vendors for your destination wedding is a great way to save money on travel fees and hire a professional with experience and familiarity with the area. You don’t need to worry about weather impacting their travel plans, gear held up in transit, or extra visas, permits, and fees.
A local vendor will know their way around your destination and can be a huge asset not just on your wedding day, but also while planning your wedding.
About half of the weddings we film here at MotionWorks are destination weddings. They are local to us, but couples travel to some of the beautiful places here in the WV like the New River Gorge or resorts like The Greenbrier. For many, these places are the scene of many family vacations and trips from years past. For others, they are traveling just for the beauty of the mountains or the Dorothy Draper/Carlton Varney decor that is done so well at The Greenbrier. Others came to the Mountain State while in college at WVU and never lost that Mountaineer spirit.
No matter why couples choose WV as the destination for their wedding, we are committed to making them a fabulous film. We love living here, love the beauty of our state, and work hard to see it with fresh eyes with each film we create. We know that this beauty, and this place, they have meaning to our couples, and that meaning is ingrained in their love story.
Benefits of Hiring Local Vendors
When you hire a local vendor, you are not just getting the product or service they provide for your wedding day. You’re hiring their years of experience and connections in the area. Have a last minute detail or emergency? A local vendor knows who to contact to make things happen ASAP.
A couple of years ago, one of our brides realized that her rehearsal dinner dress was missing. There was a snafu with the dress shop and it didn’t get shipped along with her bridal gown to her destination. Thankfully, she had hired a local planner. This planner was able to call a local boutique owner, who loaded up every white dress she had in the bride’s size, brought them to the resort for her to try on, and had a seamstress do some last minute alterations so that the new dress was as perfectly fitted as her original.
We’ve had many a conversation with families as they are planning activities for the wedding weekend, looking for recommendations of what everyone will enjoy. Of course, you can watch our films and see the activities other couples have enjoyed, but we can also know about the new activities and out of the box experiences that haven’t yet been captured.
Important things to consider when hiring a local vendor:
You don’t know this person, so it’s extra important to do your research. Google them, extensively. This is also where the local vendors you have chosen to hire can come in handy. Ask them for their recommendations.
Destination Weddings: Bring a Trusted Vendor Along
The second option when planning a destination wedding is to bring a trusted local vendor along. If you have a stylist, photographer, videographer, event planner, or florist you’ve been using your entire life, the peace of mind that they bring along is worth the extra cost needed to bring them along. You know exactly the quality of service you will receive from this vendor, and on your wedding day, nothing is more important than that kind of quality and trust. Depending on your destination, you may even find that your local vendor + travel is still a savings over the prices of local vendors at your destination. Just do your research and be sure you’re comparing apples to apples.
When Lisa and Eric were planning their sunny Florida wedding, they contacted us to come along. We’ve known Lisa for years, so she knew exactly what kind of video she would get (and what having us along on the day would mean….it was a ton of fun!) She also knew that we travel a LOT, so we know exactly what we need to do to travel with gear and film in a new location.
We also know that destination weddings are sometimes a little, well, extra. To be honest, I’m a big fan of being extra on your wedding day. For this reason, our destination wedding video packages are customizable. You can add things like extra days of filming to cover extra adventures, or a Feature Film to share more of those adventures through video.
Important things to consider when traveling with a vendor:
If this destination is new to your vendor, plan to give them an extra day or two to get the lay of the land. In addition to checking out the lighting and learning their way around, they may need time to deal with jet lag and recover from the rigors of travel. If you will be booking the flights for your vendors don’t fall into the temptation of sticking them on a multi-connection red eye, long layover in a crappy airport set to arrive the day of to save a little money. Not only will it not be worth it to have a vendor not at their best, you run the risk of one delayed flight and they miss your wedding. (FYI – we generally book our own flights. Mostly because we know how quickly baggage fees can add up with film gear, and which airlines are more accommodating of that; we’re always going to get you the best price.)
Different places have different requirements on doing work. If your wedding is within the US, your vendor may just need an extra permit (totally varies by location) or may need to do nothing extra at all. If your destination is in another country, your vendor will need to do their research on what they need to do to legally work in that country, if it is allowed at all.
It is tempting to fall into the ‘pretend to be a guest so you don’t get caught at customs’ ruse. But when it’s your wedding on the line, IMO that is not a risk worth taking. The chance you’re taking is that two days before your wedding, you may have NO video team to film because they were turned away at customs, or a video team that is indeed, just a guest because all their gear was confiscated.
These are all details that your vendors should navigate and get back to you with the details. In addition to traveling within the US for weddings, we’ve had the pleasure of filming in some really cool locations, and are always ready to jump through the hoops required to work in other countries. When that isn’t possible (*ahem* Canada), we’re equally happy to help you find a local vendor with a matching style and stellar service. But for most locations, our passports are ready for another stamp!
Book Your Destination Wedding Video
Alright, are you ready to do it? Whether you’re exchanging your vows here in West Virginia, planning an icy Nordic ceremony on the coast of Iceland, or dipping your toes in the sun-drenched sand to say “I Do” we’re ready to film it! Contact us today to start the conversation about your destination wedding video with MotionWorks Wedding Films.