Planning a wedding in Ireland: 10 helpful tips

Ireland is home to some stunning locations, so it’s no surprise so many people want to get married on the island. If you’re planning a wedding on the Emerald Isle, here are ten helpful wedding planning tips for the occasion.

Planning a wedding in Ireland: 10 helpful tips

Planning a wedding can get pretty stressful. There is a lot to consider in making your big day something special; from your vows, the dresses, who to invite, the food, the after-party, the list goes on and on.

However, if you’re planning your big day in Ireland, here are some helpful wedding planning tips to make the day run as smooth and possible and ease some of that pre-wedding stress.

10. Set a budget – ­so long as you stick to it

If you're planning a wedding in Ireland, set a budget.

One of the first things to do when planning your big day is to set your budget. This will help along the way as long as you stick to it.

If you’re planning a wedding in Ireland from abroad, this can, however, be a little more difficult as you will need to keep an eye on currency exchange rates. Still, once you get the hang of it, this can save you a lot of money!

9. Check the calendar – pick the right day

Make sure you choose the right day for when you are planning a wedding in Ireland.
Credit: @photosteve101 / Flickr

When choosing your wedding date, make sure to check a calendar of events and bank holidays in Ireland.

The June and August bank holidays, St Patrick’s Day, and Christmas can all be super busy times in Ireland which can end up costing you extra for flights and accommodation.

8. Do the legal stuff first and leave the fun to last – essential for planning a wedding in Ireland

Do the legal stuff first and leave the fun to last – essential for planning a wedding in Ireland

As tempting as it is to dive straight into all the fun stuff like choosing a dress, flowers, and colour schemes, it’s essential to crack on with the legalities first. I promise you’ll be glad of it in the long run.

In law, you must register your intention to marry at least three months before your chosen date in the Republic of Ireland and around eight weeks in Northern Ireland. But to be on the safe side, it’s better to do this as far in advance as you can.

There are several other things to consider before the big day, such as an apostille to be issued on the birth certificate if one partner is not Irish, and a Certificate of Freedom to marry from the non-Irish partner’s home country.

7. Decide on a venue – picking the right place for you

When planning a wedding in Ireland make sure you decide on a suitable venue.
Slieve League cliffs, Co. Donegal.

One of the most important decisions to make early in your wedding planning is the venue, as this choice affects so many other choices.

It’s super easy to search online for venues and if you get the chance, make sure to do a venue visit before making your final decision.

Venues get fully booked really fast, especially on weekends. So, if you have a specific date in mind, it’s best to book your wedding as far in advance as possible to avoid disappointment.

6. Use this detailed wedding checklist – to keep yourself right

Use this detailed wedding checklist – to keep yourself right

One of the easiest ways to keep on top of all the planning and organisation is to use a checklist like this detailed wedding checklist from Wedding Forward.

This simple checklist allows you to create a worksheet covering every month of the planning process right up until your big day, taking you through every step of the way, from what to do first, right through to loose ends to tie up just before the wedding.

5. Join a group – for advice from your fellow fiancé’s

Join a group – for advice from your fellow fiancé’s

There are plenty of free Facebook groups you can join on which brides and grooms share helpful advice tips and deals, which could go a long way in planning your wedding in Ireland.

They are also a great place to submit any questions you might have before the day, so do a quick search, and you’ll be sure to come across lots of helpful information.

4. Check religious ceremony requirements – each will have their own rules

Join a group – for advice from your fellow fiancé’s

It is a requirement for couples to complete a pre-marriage course if they wish to have a Catholic wedding in Ireland, to prove they are eligible to marry in a Catholic church.

Each religion will have different rules and requirements, so make sure to check on this beforehand.

3. Use Skype or Facetime – avoid long-distance phone charges

Use Skype or Facetime – avoid long-distance phone charges
Credit: Mad Ball / Flickr

If you are planning your Irish wedding from abroad, you’ll want to avoid those expensive long-distance phone call charges.

One easy way around this is to set up a Skype account as many businesses will be willing to make both video and voice calls through this.

You can also use other online calls, including Facetime, Whatsapp, Facebook Messenger, Google Hangouts, and more, but Skype is the one most commonly used.

2. Hire a planner or a stylist – for designing the perfect day

Hire a planner or a stylist – for designing the perfect day

To alleviate some of the stress leading up to the big day, it might be a good idea to hire a stylist or a planner who can help out with some of the big tasks.

A planner will have local knowledge, contacts, and experience. They will be able to use these qualities to take care of all the details you might miss out on.

1. Be prepared for anything – take it as it comes

Being prepared for any weather is an important tip to follow when planning a wedding in Ireland.

No matter how organised you are, something will probably go wrong, so be prepared for any eventualities to avoid disappointment.

When it comes to a wedding in Ireland it’s important to accept that the weather can be pretty unpredictable, so even if you’ve got a wedding planned for the height of summer, there is still a chance that it could rain.

Just remember that it’s your day to spend with your loved one and don’t allow outside influences to take away from that.

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Siân McQuillan is a student at Queen's University Belfast currently studying a masters degree in media and broadcast Production. When she is not studying or off exploring somewhere new, you will find her expressing her love of writing and visual storytelling by creating content for her online blog and YouTube channel. More than anything else, she loves sharing her travel experiences both abroad and closer to home in Ireland with the hope of inspiring others to visit somewhere new.