Destination weddings: An antidote to the Big Fat Indian Wedding
As we enter the wedding season, we look at a travel trend that has been catapulted by celebrities
Destination weddings are an elusive concept that several celebrities like actor-couple Kiara Advani and Siddhant Malhotra, Parineeti Chopra and politico Raghav Chaddha, actor Priyanka Chopra Jonas and signer Nick Jonas have opted for. With social media as one of the main focus of weddings, this idea has gained impetus as they choose to celebrate their special day at uber-luxurious locations, in India and across the world, sparing no expense. The breathtaking photos and videos that flood social media after the ceremony leave everyone ‘ooh-ing’ and ‘ahhing’, while simultaneously fighting the urge to recreate the same.
Indian government’s push
Recently, in keeping with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Developing Tourism in Mission Mode stance, the Ministry of Tourism unveiled an ambitious campaign to turn the country into a premier wedding destination for the global Indian and people from other ethnicities and nations. The tourism ministry will soon release a list of 25 destinations that tick the box ofbreathtaking landscapes, sacred traditions, tantalising culinary delights and cutting-edge infrastructure. “I invite couples from around the world to explore the enchanting dream wedding destinations across our incredible nation. Our 360-degree approach will ensure that every moment, from the first ‘hello’ to the final ‘I do’, is a testament to India's warm embrace and rich heritage,” says G. Kishan Reddy, Union Minister for Culture, Tourism and DoNER.
marA wedding that mesmerises
Looking at this emerging trend among the youth, Parthip Thyagarajan, founder, WeddingSutra, who has also conducted a wedding survey on this topics, shares, “We found that Jodhpur, Udaipur, Jaipur, Bangalore, Kochi and Goa are the top places that couples prefer for a domestic wedding". Adding, Rikant Pittie, co-founder, EaseMyTrip, says, “According our data, popular choices that couples are considering are Goa, Rajasthan and Kerala in India, and Bali, Thailand, and Italy for international destinations for their weddings.”
A gathering of love
The idea behind having a destination wedding also stems from today’s generation’s need to have “intimate family functions with close friends and family”, shares Varun Bharadwaj, director of sales and marketing, St Regis Resort, Goa, adding, “The size and composition of the guest list matters when it comes to destination weddings, as the younger generations typically believe in sharing their milestone occasions with people who matter the most to them.”
With intimate weddings the buzzword for millennials and Gen Z, Priti Sidhwani, founder and CEO, DreamzKrraft, says, “The average number of millennials and Gen Z couples opting for such weddings is substantial, accounting for nearly 60% of our clientele.” As a location that looks at several destination weddings around the year, Bharadwaj adds, “Usually, the guest numbers for destination weddings now hovers between 100 to 120, as the couple feels it should be a meaningful affair. This trend is an antidote to the traditional, large-scale Indian wedding formats of the past.”
Supreet Singh, general manager, Jai Mahal Palace, Jaipur, a popular venue for Indian weddings amongst the Millennials and GenZ, says, “After having their destination weddings, as per the current trend, couples will organise a large-scale reception at their hometowns for the extended family. Having a destination wedding offers them the perfect setting to create memories of a lifetime with loved ones. Gone are the days when weddings, with a large gathering, in your hometown were the prime focus.”