Questions To Ask When Booking An All Inclusive Resort For A Wedding

Our Wedding 2/28/2010 in Jamaica. Photographer:ShellionPlanning a destination wedding can be quite simple if you are planning to marry at an all inclusive resort.

One of the greatest advantages of these resorts is that the planning is done for you based on your needs.

Plus, since theses resorts do hundreds of these weddings a year, the staff is proficient in delivering a quality experience every time.

The hardest part of booking an all inclusive resort is selecting from the dozens of choices (here is a list of all inclusive resorts that offer wedding packages). The questions below are designed to help you get the kind of information that will help you determine which all inclusive resort is right for you.

General questions to ask

What is included in an all inclusive resort? Not everything is included in the price of the hotel rooms. Things like horseback riding, scuba diving, jet skis, golf, and massages are normally excluded and must be paid for separately. Ask to see a list of things that are not included.

  • Do you provide transportation from the airport? If so, is it complimentary?
  • Do you offer express group pre-registration and check-in?
  • Is the resort for adults only or is it kid friendly in terms of activities?
  • How much time would we need to reserve our wedding in advance?
  • How many days do we need to arrive before the wedding?
  • Does the resort offer a free wedding website?
  • Are there any planned renovations during the dates you plan to have your wedding?
  • Do you help with the preparation of wedding documents?
  • Do we need any medical tests prior to the wedding?
  • How much is the day pass for wedding guests that are not staying at the resort?
  • If the resort has sister properties, will you have access to it?
  • Is food available to guests 24 hours a day or are there specific hours of availability?

Questions about wedding packages?

  • What kinds of wedding packages do you offer? How much do they cost?
  • Is a wedding planner included in every package?
  • What services does your wedding planner provide?
  • Do you offer a free wedding package? How do I qualify for a free wedding?
  • What kinds of customizations can you do to each package?
  • What fees are associated with the free wedding package? Administration fees? Government fees? Taxes?
  • What are the blackout dates for wedding packages?
  • What kinds of services are offered under each package? Some packages offer butler service, and others offer a free massage so it’s best to ask what’s included.
  • When do I have to pay for the wedding package? Is there a deposit at the time of booking?
  • What is the cancellation policy for the wedding package?
  • Can you meet the officiant? Can they customize the wedding vows?

Questions about catering

  • Do you have suggested menus for the wedding?
  • What kind of wedding cake is included in each package?
  • Can you have a taste test of the food that will be served at the wedding reception?
  • How customizable are the menus?
  • What kind of linen will be used?
  • What does the china and silverware look like?
  • What do the certerpieces look like? Can you bring your own?
  • Do you offer a private group rehearsal dinner? Can guests not staying at the resort come too? Is there a fee for that?
  • Does the wedding couple get special meals like a honeymoon dinner?
  • What drinks will be served to wedding guests at the reception? Will they be top shelf? If not, can you request a better brand? How much will that cost?
  • What kinds of drinks are offered throughout the resort?

Questions about the wedding ceremony and reception

  • What are the times and locations available for the wedding ceremony?
  • How many indoor and outdoor locations do you have available for a ceremony?
  • How long is the ceremony and the reception?
  • What are wedding options if it rains?
  • Do they have photos of each ceremony location?
  • Do you have any photos of prior receptions?
  • If we want our wedding on the beach, what is the standard set-up?
  • Can you see some of the floral arrangements offered in each all inclusive wedding package?
  • How many people can each ceremony/reception location accommodate?
  • What time of day do most weddings take place?
  • Will there be other weddings taking place at the same time as mine?
  • How many ceremonies do they book each day?
  • What kind of wedding themes do you offer for a reception? Can you add additional decorations?
  • How long can the reception be?
  • Can you bring your own officiant?
  • Will the music be pre-recorded? Can you bring your own music? Can you have someone from your wedding party play the music?
  • Do they have their own DJ or someone that can play live music at the wedding? Cost? What instruments do they play?
  • What do you offer in the way of decorations?
  • What can’t be customized at the wedding reception?
  • Can you see samples of the bridal bouquet and grooms boutonniere?
  • Who is the photographer? Can you see his/her work? Are there additional wedding photography packages that can be purchased? How much?
  • Is there a location (a private terrace or poolside) where you can have your rehearsal dinner?

Questions about the lodging?

  • Is there a group discount if I book a certain number of rooms?
  • Can the bride and groom get an upgrade if enough wedding guests book rooms with the resort?
  • What kind of comp ratio do you offer? i.e. How many rooms do my guests have to book for a free room credit?
  • What kinds of rooms do you offer? Can wedding guests be blocked in rooms that have a better view?
  • What kinds of amenities are included?
  • What amenities are excluded?
  • Do the rooms have free wifi?
  • Does the resort charge for missing towels? If so, these charges can get quite expensive for you and your wedding guests.
  • What other fees does the resort charge for? Is there a safe fee? A fee for using the minibar? A mandatory Wifi fee? A resort fee?
  • Can the resort offer turndown service at no cost for the wedding party?
  • What is the cancellation fee for the rooms?
  • Is there a cutoff date after which you will no longer accept reservations?
  • What is the attrition rate, if any?

Questions about onsite activities and entertainment

  • What kinds of activities are included? Most non-motorized activities like windsurfing are but jet skis are not.
  • Do you have a list of onsite activities that are excluded? Things like horseback riding, scuba diving are usually not included.
  • Are there any green fees on the golf course? Are there fees for carts?
  • What kinds of entertainment is included in the wedding packages? Are there any discounted prices for any of the (comedy) shows? Are there any group games that can be played just amongst your wedding guests?
  • Are there any clubs at the resort? Are drinks free at the club?

The answers to the questions above will give you a good idea of what all inclusive resort fits your needs. Remember that you won’t find a resort that offers everything you are looking for so settle for the one that comes the closest in terms of price, amenities, ambiance and overall value.

If the process seems of selecting a resort seems too complicated, consider getting help from a travel agent. Not only do they know most of the resorts, they also have the negotiating pull to get a great deal for you. Fill out this form and have travel agents that specialize in destination weddings contact you.

What to do next?

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