Destination Weddings – How to include and Entertain the Kids

Life can be quite the journey, you've searched high and low for the perfect diamond.  You've spent months planning the ideal proposal; she was completely surprised and elated.  Now you are planning to whisk your closest family members and friends away for what will be the most important day of your life.
If you’re thinking about including your nieces and nephews, as well as your married friends’ children, in your destination wedding, spot-on planning is critical. Here are some crucial tips on arranging a kid-friendly ceremony and reception for your destination wedding.
  1. In your RSVP invitation cards, ask your guests to inform you how many children will be going with them to the wedding, as well as the respective ages of each child. Remember to count tweens and teenagers as adults. Forcing them to mingle with very young kids is not ideal, unless you plan on making the older kids in charge of the little ones. Of course, this arrangement can be okay if the brood is not that hard to handle and if the older kids agree to babysitting (and as long as they are responsible enough to keep their wards safe). If not, it would be best to hire a babysitter or two, depending on the number of children involved.

  1. If you have really decided to include kids in the big picture, consult your wedding planner. Certainly, she’s already figured out a few tricks on keeping the kids in generally appropriate behavior all throughout the wedding. The experienced professional that she is, she knows only too well to keep the kids in mind when considering every element of the occasion, from the ceremony itself to the reception.

Of course, if you don’t have a wedding planner and if you and your best gals are planning the entire thing, don’t worry. All that’s required are a few tweaks on certain details of the event. Just make sure to have a babysitter or two handy, or perhaps a cool aunt would be kind enough to volunteer to take charge of the kiddos during your special day.

  1. Make sure that the wedding venue is child-friendly. Many modern villas, for instance, don’t have railings. Furthermore, there are also establishments that do not allow children in as guests. Therefore, it would be best if you first check the details of the accommodation with the receptionist before booking.

  1. Preparing age-appropriate party/welcome bags for the kids is a great idea. Make sure to give one bag per child to avoid unnecessary crying and meltdowns. After all, it should be expected and understandable that very young kids are still learning how to share. If the kids will be staying at a hotel, coloring books and erasable markers are a safe bet to keep them busy without making too much noise. Puzzle and handheld games will work well to fight boredom in older kids. If you plan on giving them more fun and exciting toys for the pool or beach party, make sure to hand these out after the wedding. Otherwise, your immaculate wedding dress may get ruined by a squirt gun or whatnot.

  1. Remember to keep unobtrusive toys, cookies, harmlessly colorless candy and water handy during the wedding ceremony itself, to keep tantrums and meltdowns at bay. The adult-in-charge should never forget to bring wet wipes and disposable table napkins, lest the kids wipe food on their cute little suits or dresses.

  1. If you wish to host a cocktail party for your reception, make sure to prepare a separate age-appropriate party for the kids, ideally just in an adjacent room so parents can easily check on them every now and then. This will keep tired, hungry and bored kids from disrupting wedding toasts or photos. And don’t forget to leave them with a responsible and sober volunteer-guest or a babysitter.

Games, movies and toys are the perfect party ingredients so that the kids won’t feel left out from the festive mood. Another fun idea to keep them busy is letting them decorate their own mini cakes. If you want, you can also hire a clown, a magician, or a superhero or princess in costume. Also, make sure to serve kid-friendly party food. Kids can be picky eaters after all, and you can’t serve caviar or escargot without them feeling queasy about it.

If the reception is to be held in a beach or pool, make sure that the adult in charge will be sober, knows how to swim, and can perform CPR. This will allow the adults to be more carefree and enjoy the occasion without fearing for the safety of their kids.

Including kids in your destination wedding isn’t a cringe worthy idea at all. You can still enjoy your wedding, and your very young nieces and nephews can enjoy the occasion with you. All that’s needed is extra preparation and loads of patience.

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