Planning a wedding is difficult, but imagine doing it hundreds or thousands of miles away. It’s no surprise that bringing a destination wedding to life will come with its own set of challenges. With all that added distance, every detail can be tough, from narrowing down venue options to accurately estimating wedding expenses in your budget. Luckily, you don’t have to do it alone. 

With help from experienced destination wedding photographers, you’ll be better equipped to bring the faraway celebrations of your dreams to life. After all, who better to learn from than the experts themselves? From costs to the must-know tips from experts, we’re unveiling all the secrets of planning a destination wedding from the photographers who know best.

Wedding Advice from 3 Top Destination Wedding Photographers

We reached out to 3 professional wedding photographers based in the UK, that specialise in capturing far-flung wedding celebrations, for their tips, tricks, and advice that every couple planning a destination wedding should be aware of.

Expert Advice for Planning a Destination Wedding

With years of experience capturing destination weddings, each photographer was eager to share their insights on how to get the most out of your photography experience. 

1. Trust your Photographer 

Hiring a trusted wedding photographer is key to a stress-free celebration regardless of your wedding size, location, or budget. Emma-Jane Photography wants to remind couples that destination wedding photographers “have done countless weddings and seen every scenario, so if they advise on certain timings or best light, etc—they are not just doing it for the sake of it. They just want to make sure you have the best day possible. So use all their knowledge to your advantage.” 

Remember, you hire a professional for a reason. So trust your photographer wholeheartedly every step of the way.

2. Hire a Local Wedding Planner

Sometimes, it takes a village. That’s why Marta Ilardo Photography advises couples not to “attempt planning a destination wedding without a wedding planner!” Well, we agree.

Planning a wedding from hundreds or thousands of miles away is not easy. Hiring a local wedding planner will give you peace of mind, having someone nearby to plan and take care of the nitty-gritty details—especially those you can’t sort out from a distance.  

This is the secret to enjoying, relaxing, and being fully present on your wedding day. Ultimately, it’s your best day. Hire a wedding planner so you can focus on enjoying it.

3. Physically Visit the VenueThis is the secret to enjoying, relaxing, and being fully present on your wedding day. Ultimately, it’s your best day. Hire a wedding planner so you can focus on enjoying it.

Touring destination wedding venues requires more time, effort, and money. And while it might feel like a hassle, it’s important to “make sure you visit the venue yourself. Often, couples might be tempted to book online based on photos, but nothing beats going to the spot, hearing the birds, watching the sunset and getting a feel for yourself being in that space on the wedding day.” Emma-Jane Photography says that it can often make a difference in picking one venue over another.

4. Throw a Welcome Party

Kick off your wedding weekend on a high note with a welcome party. Photographer Marta Ilardo says hosting one the day before your event “makes the whole wedding weekend extra special.” Plus, it’s a great way to spend more time with guests and thank them for travelling abroad to celebrate with you.

5. Don’t Make Your Wedding About the Photos

Nothing gets D&A Photography fired up more than a bride who’s excited about her photos. With that being said, “do not make your wedding all about the photos. Make time for them, of course, but it’s not a photoshoot.” You’ll want to let your wedding happen organically because, at the end of the day, “trying to force things can ruin the authenticity.”

6. Be Prepared for Guests to RSVP “No”

For those jetting off for a destination wedding, it’s important to accept that not all invited guests will be able to attend. D&A Photography emphasises that “it’s expensive to travel abroad, and it can be tough for some to travel for extended periods. So, just anticipate guests not being able to attend.” 

While it’s disappointing that a few loved ones may not be able to join, know that it’s generally nothing personal. Typically, it’s due to financial and health reasons or other valid factors.

How much does a Destination wedding photographer cost?

Every wedding is different, and it would be unrealistic to believe each celebration would be priced the same. This is especially true for those planning a destination wedding. On top of traditional wedding expenses, factors like your location, transportation costs, accommodations, and so much more will have to be considered. 

That said, having a rough idea of what you’ll need to budget for is helpful. This prevents couples from underestimating wedding costs when creating their budget. Fortunately, these UK-based destination wedding photographers don’t gatekeep their prices. By providing transparent pricing guides, they can help couples accurately estimate photography costs as they plan their wedding.

D&A Photography’s “destination wedding package starts at £6,500.” Flights and accommodation are not included in this price and will be an extra expense that needs to be considered. Emma-Jane Photography shares that her “packages are the same for weddings in the UK and abroad.” Again, these don’t include travel and accommodation, which, if travelling to Europe, can vary from £350-600 based on the days needed. Lastly, Marta Ilardo Photography prices start at £6,000. Rather than having clients book flights and room for her, she adds a flat travel and accommodation cost. 

Usually, couples can expect their photography package to start at around £6,000, excluding travel and accommodation expenses. So, before picking a date and location, research the average costs for travel and local hotels or vacation rentals.

Destination Wedding Location Ideas from the Experts

You’ve decided on a destination wedding, but don’t yet know where those special ‘I dos’ will take place? Rather than searching the internet for “the best destination wedding spots,” here are some underrated wedding location recommendations from professional destination photographers and Wedinspire.

Tuscany, Italy

Not one but two of these top-rated destination wedding photographers recommended Tuscany. While many couples run to the coast, the Italian countryside is just as dreamy.

In fact, D&A photography says, “Tuscany in Italy is somewhere they absolutely love to shoot,” so much so that Dan and his partner are getting married there themselves. 

The food, culture, warmth, and landscapes—it’s all stunning. And if you’re dreaming of a celebration with all these things, we recommend visiting and looking at having your wedding in Italy. 

In need of wedding venue ideas? Check out our round-up of the best wedding venues in Tuscany.


Recommended by Emma-Jane Photography and Marta Ilardo Photography, Mallorca is a stunning island off the coast of Spain. Known for its crystal blue water, breathtaking landscapes, warm year-round weather, and rich history,  Mallorca offers many picturesque wedding locations and backdrops. 

In need of wedding venue ideas? Check out these extraordinary wedding venues in Mallorca.


With its reputation as one of the sunniest countries in Europe, Portugal is an ideal wedding destination for those dreaming of a warm celebration with no chance of rain. Beyond the perfect year-round weather, Portugal’s rich history and stunning wedding-worthy natural landscapes are major selling points.

Are you in need of some wedding venue ideas? Check out these wedding-worthy venues in Portugal

Truly Unique locations

Destination weddings can certainly open the world to brand new adventures and the globe really can become your playground when choosing a location to exchange vows.

“One of the most unique weddings I have ever captured was at Giraffe manor in kenya- being surrounded by the giraffes while they said I do and watching the bride walk towards the ceremony with the giraffes in the background was just magical” Emma-Jane Photography.

Plan your Destination Wedding

Now that you have all the expert destination wedding tips and location ideas, it’s time to start planning. Whether you envision a lavish Italian countryside wedding or a beachfront celebration along the sandy shores of Spain, we’ve curated a list of the finest wedding venues that’ll suit every desired style, location, and budget.

Ready to kickstart your wedding planning journey? Start by checking out our venue finder.

The Best Destination Wedding Photographers in the UK!

  • Based in Essex, D&A Photography define their approach as documentary with a little fine art, prioritising authentic moments over staged poses. Dan, the photographer, generously shared his insights not only from a professional perspective but also as a groom preparing for his own destination wedding in Italy!
  • With a gentle mix of stylist Editorial imagery and documentary, Emma-Jane‘s photography style ensures the wedding day stays natural and enjoyable for the couple. Operating from both London and the Cotswolds, her approach beautifully captures the unique light, colour, and texture offered by destination wedding venues.
  • A true traveller at heart, Marta Ilardo approaches her photography with a passion for observing and ‘hunting’ for beautiful moments and light. With an eye for beauty in every scenario and location, she translates wedding days into timeless memories, regardless of the cultural settngs.