Planning Your USVI Destination Wedding

Now that you’ve decided that you won’t settle for anything but your dream wedding, it’s time to discuss details. Setting a wedding date in the US Virgin islands should be just as easy, if not easier than doing it in your local community!

Did you know that it’s far more expensive, on average, to get married in the United States than it is at Bolongo Bay Beach Resort in the US Virgin Islands? In a survey of 18,000 American couples who got married in 2011, one in five couples spent over $30,000? destination weddingThe average cost to arrange a wedding in Manhattan in 2011 was $64,824! A beautiful ceremony at Bolongo Bay ranges from just $1,000 to $5,125. All packages include a free overnight stay with a bottle of champagne on your first wedding anniversary, and some packages even include your reception! On a sailboat! For up to 25 guests!



Planning a US Virgin Islands Dream Wedding: This Is Your Simple To-Do List

You will need to set the date as soon as possible in order to begin planning (It’s never too early)! It’s important to send out your save the date cards and invitations very early with destination weddings, in order to give your guests ample planning time!  Most venues will require a deposit to hold your wedding date, it’s important to find out what they require and get an idea of your payment timeline. Bolongo Bay makes it easy to get the ball rolling- they only require $800 as a deposit to confirm your wedding date. You don’t even have to pay the rest until three weeks before the wedding!

A key detail in planning a destination wedding is to be aware of the location’s marriage requirements! The Virgin Islands is one of the easiest places to get married for US citizens, because you DON’T NEED A PASSPORT! In addition, there are no required blood tests, or residency requirements when applying for your marriage license. There are some documents that will need to be processed in St. Thomas such as the license certificate and license application forms. Both of these can be found on Bolongo Bay’s website:
These forms must be typed up and signed by you and your fiancé. There are specific documentation rules for these forms such as:

– No abbreviations

– No unanswered information including those of a confidential nature

– No faxing of form; they will have to be mailed to the St. Thomas courthouse and be received at least 8 days before the wedding date (we recommend sending it 30 days in advance- just in case!)

– Payment of fees ($200) must be sent in with the documents in the form of money order or certified check

If either party has been married previously or is widowed, you will be required to include certified copies of divorce papers or death certificate, whichever the case may be.

The good news with the documentation requirement is that it’s very easy to finish! Once you have sent in your documents, confirm receipt by calling the courthouse after a few days. This will also give you a chance to make arrangements for picking up the license, which is something you and your fiancée will have to do personally once you get to St. Thomas. The courthouse is located a few miles away from Bolongo Bay, and it usually takes about 15 minutes to go in and take care of everything. This is the only thing you are really responsible for in the entire planning process! After your wedding ceremony, Bolongo Bay will take care of the final processing of paperwork once your minister and witnesses have signed!

*An important thing to note about visiting the courthouse- please dress appropriately! No bare shoulders, flip flops, or bathing suits!

Why not turn your courthouse errand into a fun adventure as well? Since you will already be in downtown Charlotte Amalie, use the time away from the resort to shop, explore, and dine! The courthouse is conveniently located near the historic Fort Christian, one of the oldest buildings in the Caribbean, as well as famed Main Street, bustling with jewelry, souvenir, and specialty shops! Make your way down the cobblestone alleyways to discover cozy restaurants and fun bars perfect for lunch or a refreshing drink. The stores in Charlotte Amalie are housed in and among historical buildings, making shopping and sightseeing one and the same (perfect for convincing your fiancé that you need to check it out!).

Once you have begun the planning process for you dream wedding in paradise, make sure to finish up the loose ends required at home- dress fittings, ring sizing, etc! Your dress is one of the most personal details of the entire wedding, whether you decide to go with a simple, short white dress, or an elaborate lace, beaded gown with a train and matching veil, the decision is all yours! The most important thing is that your feel comfortable, beautiful, and fabulous on your wedding day!

Tuesday20 Aug 2013