If you have chosen a wedding abroad one of the questions you will definitely ask yourself is this: when do I need to be on site in Italy for my wedding?

I can imagine that you will probably have scouted ahead of time, or have excellent contacts on site to perfectly plan your most beautiful day. Once you’ve done that, with the date approaching, and with a lot of things to finalize on the spot you’ll surely be wondering when to book the flight to get there.

A first sensible answer would suggest at least 3 or 4 days in advance but I always suggest staying “wide” and arriving at least 5 or 6 days in advance, if it was a week it would be even better and I’ll explain why: On site you will have a lot of little details to work out that remotely you will surely have left out.

There is the florist who will ask you for the details for the bouquet delivery, the wedding planner who will update you on any news, the musician, the caterer, the interpreter, the celebrant: in short all the vendors involved will want to have your last detail to be discussed directly with the couple. But there are also a whole host of bureaucratic tasks-unless you choose a symbolic rite which really simplifies everything and which we strongly recommend.

If indeed you have chosen a civil ceremony there will be papers to be signed in at the municipality, etc. Considering that there is no official residency requirement for civil ceremonies in Italy but bureaucratic paperwork is always lurking.

And then there are the rehearsals, mainly hair & make up rehearsals that not only affect the bride but also the mothers of the bride and groom and definitely the bridesmaids. But even before the guests arrive on site it would be good if the bride and groom were already there to greet them.

I had booked all my guests at the same hotel getting a group discount but the day before the wedding I had to deal with one guest complaining about the room and asking to be moved and another having a hissy fit because it was the first time she was leaving her small children at home. These things can happen but being prepared helps to handle them better.

So to answer the initial question definitively consider that it would be right on site at least five or six days before the ceremony.

If need help with the planning just have a look at our Wedding planning service.

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