When you set out to choose a wedding date there are some things you need to consider before etching it in stone and sending out the details to your family and friends. Since the planning for a wedding can take up to a year, let's consider these:
This covers both you and your loved ones. Are you pregnant? You have to decide if you want to tie the knot before or after you give birth. Then you have to consider the health of the elderly or those that you want to share the special day with you. If there are surgeries or planned hospitalizations, keep that in mind.
Be careful not to think of a wedding as a one-day event to worry about. This is more than a matter of getting a day off or switching a schedule. You need to think about time off for events and days leading up to the wedding day and the dates needed off for the honeymoon. Many companies buckle down for inventory in the month of July. Similarly, companies may have black-out periods where time off is not allowed. Fiscal years begin in September. Holiday time off usually hits employers in October through the New Year.
While throwing a wedding on or near a holiday can be incredibly festive, it can also be ridiculously expensive. Flower prices are not fixed, which means they balloon during peak periods such as Valentine's Day, Mother's Day, Memorial Day, and the like. Traveling gets expensive too during the holidays. Also consider that some of your guests may already have holiday plans that preclude them from attending. Costs rise for the holidays for everyone, so think twice before jamming your wedding into everyone's calendar on Thanksgiving weekend.
Weather patterns have increasingly become more unpredictable than ever. You want to avoid letting climate changes be the detriment to your wedding day. February can be a blizzard ice box in the Northeast and Great Lakes regions. And while July and August can be sweltering in D.C., it's perfectly mild in Southern California. Triple-digit heat waves plague the Southwest through October, yet crisp Fall weather blankets the Bible Belt. Don't forget that the Atlantic Hurricane Season begins June 1st and runs through November.
Maybe all you care about are the venue locations for the ceremony and the reception. If so, you're going to have to plan to be flexible as the dates for popular venues fills up quickly. It is not uncommon to get put on a waiting list. Flexibility may mean exchanging vows on a Friday or a Sunday instead of a Saturday. It may also mean changing the time; your afternoon ceremony may need to be a rise-n-shine event at 7:30AM.
You're about to pat yourself on the back because you've got it all planned and ready to go except you missed one minor detail. You just realized that neither the contributing Vogue Magazine photographer and Chateau Marmont's pastry chef are available to shoot and cake your wedding! Always check out and check off your Must-Haves for the wedding. If vendors are the make-or-break point to your nuptials, then you're wedding date will be contingent on booking this aspect first.
As mentioned earlier, there are seasons for everything. If you want guests to travel from out of town, then consider avoiding family holidays such as Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas. Many times, however, low-fare airlines reduce fares for off-season travel such as January - March and August - October. Three day weekends can be tricky. Prices can either go high or very low. If you're planning a destination wedding, then you need to consider you and your guests' cost of travel, passports and visas, vaccinations (if needed), US travel embargos, etc.
Making your dream wedding a reality is going to require time, patience, flexibility, and money. Dream weddings take longer to plan because virtually all of the details are deal breakers without them. Start with foundational basics like venue and season. From there you can branch out. Work from the outside, in. Therefore, if you are stressed about the venue, don't burden yourself with table linens. That's not an epic decision yet. Not until the dates and venues are nailed down.
What are some of the things that you think will affect your wedding date?