First, let me say that I am all for the destination wedding -- it's a fantastic option for a bride and groom who want to have a unique wedding and honeymoon and want to include friends and family. That being said, it's also a good way to whittle down the guest list for two reasons -- you likely won't invite nearly as many people to your destination wedding as you would to a local ceremony, and even out of those you do invite, many will not be able to make the trip.
However, if you are planning a destination wedding, you might find that booking an all-inclusive week for you and your honey is less than you'd spend on a wedding, and therefore spending $5000 on that week is fine. Good for you. But, you need to keep in mind that your guests haven't been saving for a wedding, or if they have, it's probably for their own.
You say, "But no! It really is a dream vacation! It might be a lot of money, but look at what our guests will get to do!" And you have a valid point. For some, getting a wedding invite to an exotic location is just the excuse they've been looking for to take that trip. However, some guests might find themselves torn between using the money they've saved for their own dream vacation to join you on yours and declining the invitation. And some guests simply might not be able to come up with the money.
If you're heart is set on a wedding in Scotland surrounded by family and friends, here are some ways to show your guests that you are taking their budgets into consideration:
- Look into flights and help point guests to the less expensive options. Perhaps there are even charters available.
- Talk to guests coming alone and see if they want to split a room with another single guest.
- Look at villas or condos available for rent -- if you find a villa with sleeping areas for ten people, you can group people together and let them split the cost.
- If you find you're not busting your budget, you might want to consider actually covering the cost of accommodations for guests who are a little strapped for cash.
- Providing meals for your guests is a great way to save them some money and help everyone get to know each other.
- Ask guests not to bring gifts, and keep the dress code easy.