Tips & Advice
Destination wedding at-home receptions don't have to be stressful to plan. In fact, they should be the fun part to plan, as you are already married and you are just throwing a party to celebrate with friends and family. Not all at-home wedding receptions are the same. You have a wider variety of choice when it comes to planning a reception after a destination wedding.
The first thing that you have to plan is what kind of party you want and when. You can chose to have a formal wedding reception just like any other normal wedding reception or you can have a casual party or get-together instead. A casual party could be a backyard BBQ, a party at the park, an open house, or a dinner at a restaurant. It is all up to what you and your fiancé want to have. Remember, though, if you plan on having a formal wedding reception with all the glitz and glamour it is going to cost you money and you will have to plan way in advance to make sure you have everything available for that date.
Invitations to the wedding reception after a destination wedding should be completely separate from a wedding announcement or the invitation to the actual destination wedding. It is proper etiquette to send these invitations out alone as they are a completely different event than the actual destination wedding. Be sure to give people plenty of time to RSVP and plan ahead for the reception.
No matter what kind of wedding reception you choose to have after a destination wedding, you want to be sure that you include some must haves. First of all, like any party you should supply food for the guests. This can be a whole meal or just appetizers or desserts. You can hire a caterer or make the food yourself with the help of a couple friends or family members. The second item that you will need to plan for at the reception is drinks. This does not necessarily mean alcoholic drinks, but you will need some sort of refreshments for the guests. Keep it simple with just soda or lemonade, or create your own signature cocktail for the party. Lastly, if you want to go a more traditional route, you may want to consider getting a wedding cake for the wedding reception. People like to have this tradition at receptions and this way you can make your guests feel like they are more involved in the actual wedding with you. And if there will be toasting, consider offering champagne, sparkling wine, or sparkling juice.
There are a few other things that you should consider when planning your reception after a destination wedding. Are you going to have any entertainment at the reception? You may consider hiring a DJ or a live band to add to the atmosphere of the party. What decorations are you going to have? If you are having a casual backyard party, a cute idea is to decorate the place like your wedding destination. Hawaiian weddings can be decorated with tiki torches and leis, or a Mexico wedding incorporate margaritas and mariachi music. Do you want someone to take pictures at the reception? You may be able to find a wedding guest that is good at photography that can do this free of charge for you.
Whatever kind of wedding reception you plan after a destination wedding, be sure to have everything booked and ready to go beforehand and don't wait until the last minute. Most of all remember to have fun and celebrate!