How to Craft the Ultimate Destination Wedding Timeline in 2024 or 2025

January 4, 2024


Over the last five years, I have had the privilege to document destination weddings all across the globe. I am proud to say that after serving so many couples, I have learned so much about curating the best wedding day, weekend, and adventure! Additionally, crafting wedding timelines and itineraries makes me even more excited to capture your wedding day in a way that truly makes it all about you and your fiancé!

Throughout this blog, you will find my top eight tips for creating an organized timeline for any destination, timeline examples from real weddings I have photographed, and examples of my favorite locations all across the globe for destination weddings!

For more information about my services, wedding collections, and experience, connect with me by clicking here to learn more!

1. Early Planning is Key for any Destination

For every couple planning a destination wedding, the earlier you start, the better. It’s not just about choosing the perfect venue; it’s about curating an experience. From coordinating with vendors to understanding the local culture and logistics, early planning sets the stage for a seamless celebration.

Another thing to note for international couples is to plan even further in advance to work around other languages, do extra travel planning, and overall stress-free wedding!

2. Embrace the Local Flavor

One of the most incredible aspects of a destination wedding is the opportunity to infuse the local culture into every aspect of the celebration. Whether it’s the cuisine, music, or traditional rituals, incorporating these elements adds a unique charm to the event and creates unforgettable memories for the couple and their guests.

3. Set Aside Time for Time for Just YOU TWO

My favorite part of any wedding day is when I get to spend time with you and your fiancé photographing your natural love story! I cherish prompting and posing in a documentary-style way; this means that you will share true emotions through your photographs.

Throughout the time we work together, I will not only get to know your love story but also the things that mean the most to you to curate the perfect gallery!

One thing I always suggest to couples is to take advantage of the natural beauty surrounding their chosen destination. The golden hour—those magical moments just after sunrise or before sunset—provides the most stunning lighting for capturing timeless photographs.

4. Creating a Balance of Rest and Excitement

While it’s tempting to pack the itinerary with non-stop festivities, remember to allow time for relaxation and exploration. Moments of quiet reflection or a stroll on the beach can be as precious as the grand celebrations. Many of my past brides have regretted not spending downtime with their new husbands, and it is something I highly suggest on any wedding day!

5. Communication is Key

Throughout the planning process, effective communication is essential. I value working closely with you both and other vendors to ensure that everyone is on the same page, creating a cohesive experience that reflects your fairytale wedding day!

One of the first things I love to know about each of my couples is the story behind their chosen destination! There are thousands of locations to get married, and every single one has significance to each person I meet! Have you chosen a place to celebrate the best day of your life?

6. Flexibility Helps with Stress

No matter how meticulously planned your wedding may be, unexpected situations will always occur. A flexible itinerary allows for adjustments without compromising the essence of the celebration. It’s about embracing spontaneity and enjoying the moments as they unfold.

7. Celebrate Throughout the Weekend

My favorite wedding trend for 2024 and 2025 weddings is to celebrate for an entire weekend! Choose to get married on a Friday – which can save you money with most venues – and celebrate throughout Saturday and Sunday with your closest family and friends! Plan activities like welcome dinners, excursions, or post-wedding brunches. This also works best for destination weddings planned at Airbnb and VRBOs!

Below is a list of my favorite, intimate wedding friendly, stays across Airbnb and VRBO:

8. Create Lasting Memories

Ultimately, a well-crafted wedding itinerary is not just about the logistics; it’s about curating an experience that lingers in the hearts of the couple and their guests for years to come. It’s important to consider your guest, but more importantly, the time you get to spend with the love of your life!

I’ve seen how these meticulously planned itineraries can truly elevate the wedding experience. What elements of a destination wedding itinerary are you most excited about for your own day?


DAY 1 (Thursday): Wedding Weekend WelcomeDay 2 (Friday): Wedding DayDay 3 (Saturday): Exploring & AdventureDay 4 (Sunday): Farewell Brunch
Morning: Guests Arrive
Afternoon: Welcome Reception and Wedding Rehearsal
Evening: Rehearsal Dinner at a local restaurant or chosen stay (Airbnb, VRBO, or venue) with private chef
Morning: Spa Day for the Entire Wedding Party & Getting Ready
Early Afternoon: First Looks & Bridals
Afternoon: Intimate Ceremony
Evening: Wedding Reception & Activities
Morning: Yoga or Swimming (Beach or Pool)
Afternoon: Group Excursion (with wedding party and family)
Evening: Casual Candlelit Dinner
Farwell Breakfast and Brunch Together as a Group with Speeches


10:00 AMBride & Groom Wedding Day Details: dress, shoes, vows, jewelry, etc.
11:00 AMBridal Preparations & Getting Ready
11:30 AMGroom’s Preparations & Getting Ready
12:00 PMFinal Bride Preparations for First Look
12:15 PMBride & Father First Look
12:30 PMBride & Groom First Look with Portraits
1:30 PMWedding Party & Family Portraits
2:30 PMPre-Ceremony Details & Down Time
3:00 PMWedding Ceremony
3:30 PMPost-Ceremony Candids & Cocktail Hour
4:00 PMBride & Groom Golden Hour Portraits
5:00 PMWedding Reception: dinner, toasts, speeches
7:30 PMWedding Fireworks & Dances
9:00 PMPhotography Farewell

destination wedding inspiration

*Note: Some Photos from Pinterest for Inspiration*

Crafting the perfect destination wedding itinerary is an intricate dance—a harmonious blend of planning, spontaneity, and celebrating love in a breathtaking setting. I’m beyond grateful for the opportunity to capture these moments and contribute to creating an unforgettable experience for every couple!

So, future couples, as you start on this incredible journey of planning your destination wedding, remember to focus on the importance of love, culture, and celebration to create a tapestry of memories that will last a lifetime!

For couples seeking to invest more in my wedding collections, timeline services, super 8 wedding films, and more, feel free to get in contact with me by clicking here!