Wedding planning can be pretty tough. Whether you hired a full-service planner to take care of it all, or you’re DIYing the whole damn thing.
But living long-distance from your soon-to-be-spouse while trying to plan a wedding that reflects the both of you, together and apart? Whew, that’s a serious task. With any wedding planning conundrum, we can offer a few bits of advice that apply to both couples living together (or near each other) and those living far away from each other.
It’s immensely important to get clear expectations from each other early on. What wedding elements are most important for both of you? What are things you both can’t imagine a wedding without? That way, when you’re far apart from each other making wedding plans with family, friends & potential vendors, you already know what’s important to your partner who isn’t present for the discussion.
The second essential tip? Set boundaries about ‘wedding talk time’. We’ve seen this issue with couples that both live together and reside across the world from each other. Sometimes, when you’re in the depths of wedding planning, every conversation turns to wedding planning talk. And, if you hardly see or hear from your loved one as-is, you don’t want to use every bit of quality time organizing and making wedding decisions. Try scheduling ‘wedding planning meetings’ once a week. That way, the rest of the week you can forget about the wedding planning stress and catch up with one another sans wedding admin details.
Thanks to our friends at Be Inspired PR, we’ve culled even more expert advice to planning your wedding long-distance from many of the world’s best wedding professionals…
Schedule Virtual Tours & Fittings
“Knock out as many tasks as possible using online services. Planning a wedding is fun – and hectic. Throw in a long-distance relationship and it can feel a little disconnected too. Luckily, we live in a time when we can do so much of our planning online. And, you can get some of the things you need delivered to your door!
Take advantage of online services to plan together even when you’re apart. You can virtually tour a venue, go through your wedding to-do list over a Zoom happy hour, even customize your wedding suit or tuxedo online. Look for vendors that offer online services like we do at Generation Tux. We help couples plan easier by doing everything from home, even down to free swatches and a free home try-on delivered to your door. You can be apart when you plan and make sure you look great when you’re together!” – Matt Ramirez, SVP of Marketing, Generation Tux
Tell Your Vendors How Limited In-person Meetings Are
“Communicate with your vendors about your needs. While couples will have several opportunities to be in virtual settings for appointments, some wedding planning tasks will ultimately have to be done in person. Be upfront with your vendors about your schedules and your needs to work together to make sure you can knock out those in-person tasks during the times you’ll be together, like setting up a private tasting with your caterer!” – Michelle’s Catering
Hire a Full-service Wedding Planner
“Establish expectations first with your partner. Planning a wedding can be very overwhelming, especially for those planning a wedding while in a long-distance relationship. Before you do anything, including hiring a wedding planner, I suggest having a discussion with your partner to establish expectations, decide on a location together, understand BOTH of your must-haves, and most importantly, decide on a budget so you can be on the same page.
Once you’ve established these, hire a full-service planner to help with not only logistics but also conceptualizing your vision and décor while keeping the planning process stress-free. Thanks to technology, it’s easy to connect, engage virtually for regular check-ins, and handle any planning or design decisions over Zoom.” – AJ Williams, Founder & CEO, AJ Events
Set Up Boundaries About Wedding Planning Talk
“Be mindful of your non-planning time together. 100% of your communications shouldn’t be about wedding planning! Map out one day a week during which you don’t even mention the wedding. Make an effort to send sweet, connecting texts that remind each other of why you got engaged in the first place!” – Elizabeth Wellington, MA, LPC, Psychotherapist & Founder, Kinship Collaborative
Check in on Each Other Emotionally
“Don’t forget to check in on each other emotionally. Schedule regular intentional time to check in about wedding planning, ensuring you can see each other (FaceTime works great!). When you’re planning a wedding and live together or near each other, you can pick up on so many forms of nonverbal communication and emotional messages about how the process is going that you likely won’t be able to receive as readily when you live apart.
During this weekly(ish) dedicated time, make sure to equally cover logistics as well as the emotional experience of the process. Are either of you feeling stressed or anxious? How are you feeling about family participation? Are you feeling sufficiently supported by your fiancé?” – Elizabeth Wellington, MA, LPC, Psychotherapist & Founder, Kinship Collaborative
Turn Your Planning Tasks into Vacations
“Still searching for your venue? Or have you booked the venue & are ready for site visits & other vendor bookings? Turn your stressful wedding tasks into romantic vacations. And I mean, romantic vacations. Plan a trip to meet together where you’ll get married and schedule a minimal amount of fun planning tasks – like tastings! Then, spoil each other with wining and dining. This way your memories of wedding planning won’t be entirely engulfed in stress, but rather visions of happy vacations together.” – Claire Eliza, Editor-in-Chief of Bridal Musings
“Use videoconferencing whenever you can! Planning a wedding while living far apart can present many challenges, but thankfully technology makes things a whole lot easier. Videoconferencing is so helpful when exchanging ideas on colors, style, and logistics. It also enables you to still have face-to-face meetings with your vendors when you can’t be in the same place.” – Lisette Gatliff, Lisette OC Photography
Get Organized with The Cloud
“Take advantage of the cloud. When planning a wedding in a long-distance relationship, it’s easy for forms and documents to get lost over emails. Take full advantage of the cloud to access wedding documents and files that you two can easily modify and share with each other to keep everything in one place.” – Lisette Gatliff, Lisette OC Photography
Enlist Help on Social Media
“Social media is your friend here! Social media is a great way to keep in communication with family and friends about pre-wedding events and any tasks that are delegated to them – enlist help when needed!” – Lisette Gatliff, Lisette OC Photography
These tips were gathered by Be Inspired PR, a PR + Social Media Agency for wedding, wellness & lifestyle clients. With over 10+ years of experience, we’re here to take our clients to the next level! Find oodles of stylish wedding inspiration on their Instagram & Pinterest.