Whether your planning a destination wedding or just one in another state, there are a few things that you need to do first! Planning a wedding in the same state is stressful enough, so these tips will really help you in planning your out of state wedding.

1. Evaluate your guest list!

Start by writing down who you absolutely want at your wedding. Then go through the list and pick who would be willing to travel. You have to think about costs (which we will discuss next). Not only do you have to pay to get there, your guests do too. Also, is anyone on your guest list unable to travel? For instance, great grandparents who can’t do long distance traveling. Of course you should have the wedding you’ve always dreamed of, but if important people have to miss out, you should consider maybe doing a smaller reception when you get back home. This can cut your guest list down and save you some money!

2. Check out flight and hotel pricing.

You’re going to want to know the best options for travel, as well as your guests. Do a Google search or download the app Hopper to find out what is the best time to buy tickets. Don’t forget to check out all the hotels in the area. Make sure none have a stay minimum for your guests that don’t plan on staying long.

3. Research local events.

Picking your wedding date is fun, but you also need to be smart about it. Make sure that there aren’t any local events going on at that time that would make flights and hotels more expensive. This is also a good way for you to avoid wedding crashers.

4. Look at the Farmer’s Almanac.

This is especially important if you’re planning a destination wedding in a tropical area. The last thing you would want is for a giant rain storm to be going on the whole time you’re there. Compare their weather history with their local events to plan your perfect wedding date!

One thing to keep in mind is that you are probably going to need to visit your location at least once before your wedding. Details always change after seeing the venue in person. Also, picking out your catering is difficult when you aren’t there to try the food. Make sure your destination is something that you really want but also somewhere that you can get to easily in order to solidify wedding arrangements.