Outdoor weddings can be beautiful with the added benefit of using the natural surrounds as your ‘decor’ (you could possibly save money by spending less on sprucing up the venue) but there are a number of key things to consider before you decide to commit to an alfresco celebration.
Heres 7 key things to consider before planning your outdoor wedding:
1. Secure a permit
Probably not the most exciting of things to be thinking of when it comes to planning your outdoor wedding but without it, there will be no outdoor wedding. Whether you are planning to get married on the beach with the glorious sand between your toes or in a national park, most outdoor locations will require a permit to allow you to use the space. Be sure you contact the relevant council before you set your heart on a venue and don’t forget to enquire about any conditions and restrictions to using the space.
2. Plan for the weather
This might be stating the very obvious but the weather can be very unpredictable at times, even in some parts of Australia where is is gloriously sunny for most of the year. Whilst the weather will fall in the hands of mother nature on the day, you can take preemptive measures to ensure you are prepared for most eventualities, such as providing a shaded area for guests on a hot, sunny day, considering the positioning of the sun when deciding on the direction in which guests will be facing and ensuring any tents are sturdy enough to protect from strong winds. In the unlikely, but not impossible, event that you get hit with a freak storm that will prevent you getting married, wedding insurance can be your best friend. This will cover the cost of you having to completely rearrange your wedding should you need to.
3. Have an alternative plan
Needless to say, having a back up plan to an outdoor wedding is highly recommended. Should mother nature decide to throw a tantrum, your wedding day can quickly succumb to an onslaught of unexpected rain. Ideally your venue should have an indoor option onsite else consider having a tent/marquee ready to go if need be or booking a reception space like a restaurant close by .
4. Guest comfort
You’ll probably have a rough idea of how the weather will be depending on the time of day and season you are getting married. If it’s a summer wedding and you know it will be hot and sunny, ensure that shade is available along with non-alcoholic refreshments to keep guests hydrated. If it’s going to be cold, perhaps provide guests with blankets and outdoor heaters. A few umbrellas wouldn’t go amiss either if the skies take a turn.
5. Pest control
Keep the bugs at bay by providing citronella candles, especially if mosquitoes are going to be an issue, and insect repellant for your guests.
6. Thoughtful catering
Make sure the menu you have selected can withstand the weather. Shellfish and dairy won’t sit well in the sun. If having open food areas like a buffet or a dessert table, ensure that dishes are properly covered to keep them insulated and protect from bugs.
7. Power provision
You’ll need to consider providing your own power if it doesn’t already come available with your outdoor venue. Electricity generators will likely be needed for lighting, sound, fans, heaters, catering appliances and band/dj. You may need to have an electrician inspect the premises for safety and recommendations first.