Even though Maui, Hawaii is far from many couples’ homes who choose to get married here, it can be much easier to get married in Maui than at home. (This doesn’t mean it will be easy though!) Getting Married in Maui often means less guests and less hassle. Among many other aspects, this island makes things easier because so many others get married here too. That means more services and access to great wedding help.
Photos by Natalie Brown Photography
Important Maui Wedding Tips
1. Hire a Professional Maui Wedding Consultant or planner. Don’t leave things to chance.
2. Account for all the driving. At most of the events before and during your big day, there will likely be alcohol involved. On Maui especially, the law is very strict about drinking and driving. You don’t want your wedding party hurt or in jail while you walk down the aisle. Provide transportation via shuttle or car service if your wedding is far from where people are staying. Keep people on the same part of the island. This is really important. An accident, death or jail time can ruin your wedding. This island is strict and should be due to the winding dangerous roads.
3. Hire a professional wedding photographer. Relying on a friend of family member to shoot your wedding often ends in tears. This doesn’t mean that person has any intention of losing your film, digital photo cards, or getting bad lighting. It just means that they don’t photograph weddings for a living. Even the best photographer in your family may miss some important moment of the wedding that you want captured forever. Leave it to the professionals. Go online and look at the different Maui photographer websites and pick images from a wedding photo gallery that you feel would best fit your special day. besides what could go wrong with a friend, you want them enjoying the wedding and not busy shooting anyway.
4. Communicate! In order to have everyone important happy with the results and the process, be honest and open with everything! This goes for your fiancé and the parents. Listen to their ideas and think them over before shooting them down. Make certain to also consult your fiancé with any decisions you plan on making.
5.Remember your budget. You may not be able to afford everything you want for your wedding day. If you’re flexible, you may find cost saving alternatives that are better than the original. This should be rule number one, but the planner can help you with this. Going over budget is disheartening and stressful, but if you’re realistic from the beginning, you can unload a lot of that stress.
6. Don’t be afraid to delegate responsibilities. Make responsibility checklists for everyone in the party. Put your family to work too. This is too big a job for you to take on all by yourself, and that’s what these wonderful people are here for. Make the checklists, hand them out and explain them, and keep a master checklist for yourself. refer to the master that has important dates on it where you can check up on the individuals from time to time.
7. Get everything in writing! Here on Maui people are much more relaxed in business. This is not a good thing when you want things done on time and perfectly. Make sure that you have your service providers write down and sign everything you need them to do, provide, and make. You don’t want to be left with an empty budget and nothing to show for it. Also, make certain to check their references. They may provide you with some older ones. Get the newest references available. Remember to book them early. The best providers will be taken early in the game.
8. After setting the date, you’ll have a lot to do. Make this wedding your priority. If you have some other events to plan or important things to do, get them done early or put them off till after the wedding. you’ll have your hands full for some time.
9. Set the date of your bachelor and bachelorette parties for well before the wedding. You don’t want to be hung over for the important details that precede the wedding. Also, remain relatively sober for your rehearsal dinner. I say relatively, because you may still drink, but don’t drink as much as the others. People are always hurting the next day. Don’t be one of them. Plus you may save yourself from embarrassment.
10. Plan your wedding with ample time for people to arrive and get settled. You’d rather have people waiting than arriving late.
11. Get comfortable shoes. You’re in Maui! You can still look great and where sandals or slip ons. If you want to go all the way, then break in your shoes early on. You don’t want to be uncomfortable on your special day. Your unhappiness will show in the photographs.
12. Stay healthy throughout your engagement. Regular exercise and good diet will keep your mind on track and your body fitting in your swim suit and dress or tuxedo. Also, before and after arrival to the islands, make sure your tanning is regulated. More often than not, the bride has powerfully bright bikini strap tan lines and the groom has a red nose. Use sunblock, keep an eye on each other, and watch the lines!
13. On the same note, do some trial runs for your hair and makeup. Even if you use someone else in Maui, do it with a professional at home, and take pictures. The best thing to do is be in Maui early to do the trial runs.
14. Register for gifts that are in your guest’s price range. Too many couples go through the wedding catalogs and just pick out fun things. Keep in mind that these things are pretty and fun, but you’ll never use half of them. Expensive silver, crystal, and china are great, but go with the things you need first. One great idea is to have a Paypal account set up for your guests to “Buy a Brick” or “buy some miles” toward your new home or honeymoon. This is a great way to minimize the expense of the wedding. We find that people often pay more than suggested and sometimes have something special waiting for you on your honeymoon, if they know the details. Also, write a thank you note as soon as you get the gift. Keep a checklist of notes to gifts. This way you don’t have to remember later who’ve you thanked.
15. Concentrate on making yourself and your fiancé happy. Forget about everyone else. Look at the entire congregation as a whole and don’t stress over appeasing everyone. So long as you’re happy, the majority of guests are happy, and the parents who’ve funded it are content, then your wedding is a success.
16. Have the parents in charge of introducing your side to the other side of the family. Make sure that the parents know everyone’s names and faces first. It doesn’t hurt to pull out photo albums and go over your friends and family with both sets of parents before hand.
17. Group each table at the wedding by their interests, ages and by who already knows each other. Some people you’ll need to put together, but don’t be afraid to mix people together by common interests. These people will make good friendships if done right. Keep the party animals together and away from the older mellower crowd. Also, you may need to separate some people from each other by putting them on the other sides of the room.
18. Spend time with each guest, thank them for coming, and make sure to say goodbye when leaving the reception. On this same token, make sure to eat well at the rehearsal and before the wedding. Most newlyweds have little time or appetite on the wedding day and at the reception. You’ll find yourself going from table to table to say hello. During dinner is the best time to get this off your checklist, because they’re mostly seated and you can get them all in one hit. Then you’ll be free to spend the rest of your night enjoying the company of anyone around you.
19. Keep spirits high and a strong sense of humor. Some things won’t go exactly how you plan, so be prepared for things to be a step or two from perfect. (You know your family. That crazy aunt will surely do something you hoped she wouldn’t.)
20. Thank all parents involved for your wonderful wedding with a toast at either the rehearsal or wedding. The greatest gift you can give to them is a personalized photo album of the wedding with the best Maui wedding photographs. This is something that they will cherish for the rest of their lives.
21. Public Beach and Park Etiquette:
Only certain Maui beaches are permitted for weddings. Only couples and vendors who have that permit and who are on a permitted wedding beach can get married. Otherwise, they risk being fined which is not a good way to start a wedding day! It is a good idea to be knowledgeable about etiquette and what to expect for a wedding held in a public area. It is a first come first serve situation. This means that anyone can be at your wedding site, even another wedding. Please respect their right to be there as they should respect you also.
You should have the wedding experience of your dreams, so please keep these tips in mind so you will be prepared for anything on your special day.
- Please be respectful of Maui’s fragile environment. Remove all wedding related debris, including flower petals, after you are finished with the site.
- The public does have the right to enjoy any public beach. Unfortunately, you cannot rope off beach or park areas.
- Respect all the historic or archaeological landmarks.
- Hold your wedding at a site that is realistic to the size of your wedding party. It is a good idea to visit the location before the actual event. If that is impossible, try to look at pictures, or call local wedding professionals and ask the appropriate questions.
- The use of alcohol is prohibited on Maui’s public beaches and parks. Sparkling cider is a good alternative to celebrate in style!