Engaged couples are always asking us which honeymoon and wedding destinations offer great weather, affordable and comfortable accommodations, and lots of fun and romantic activities. One easy answer we always give is to consider Aruba.
To get a real feel for why Aruba attracts so many newlyweds, we decided to reach out to Ed Malone, Aruba’s ‘ Area Director - North America, at Aruba’s Tourism Authority. Ed found his home when he arrived in Aruba over 30 years ago, and since then he’s been heavily involved in Aruba’s ascent as a world class destination. So he knows as much about the romance and attractiveness of Aruba as anyone, With that as background, here’s our interview:
To Begin: What attracts so many newlyweds to Aruba?
What we’ve learned, over the years, is that couples and their wedding parties want great weather, a place that’s affordable for all budgets, and a wide variety of services and fun activities that all together makes for a memorable honeymoon or destination wedding. Best yet, Aruba is nestled in the southern Caribbean, outside of the hurricane belt, making for perfect weather year-round. It's these same qualities that also make Aruba the perfect place for romantic proposals and engagements. Get engaged and then celebrate the occasion on this beautiful tropical paradise.
How easy is it to get to Aruba?
We have daily flights arriving into Aruba (many are non-stop) with each of our major carriers including American, Delta, Jet Blue, Southwest and United serving 12 major gateway cities like Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Miami, Atlanta and Chicago with timely connections from a much wider range of US cities. With the recent announcement by American with new direct flights from Dallas and Chicago, it allows for easier travel and connections from new markets in the West. By the way, a fun fact is that some flights enable couples to make it here in time for lunch at one of our beach bars.
You mention lots of fun activities, so what can honeymooners and wedding guests expect?
Well, the variety is almost endless. You can hike, bike, ride horses, kayak, scuba dive, play golf & tennis, sail, wind and kite surf, go karting, visit an old Dutch Mill, or attend our year-round folkloric celebration: the Bon Bini Festival. This festival is held every Tuesday night and it showcases the Aruban culture. Couples can also enjoy world class spa treatments, see natural pools and natural bridges, visit one of many museums, play blackjack and roulette at our casinos, take a romantic sunset cruise, enjoy a beach barbecue, listen to the pulsating beat of local bands, enjoy concerts headlined by international entertainers, or just lounge on the beach enjoying starry nights and the sounds of waves. Whatever couples do our people will make them feel like they are at home.
How about available services for destination weddings?
Glad you asked, because Aruba offers every imaginable service that a bride, a groom, or a wedding party could possibly need or want. For starters, consider our perfect year-round weather, and our fabulous picturesque beach locations. So, the stage is set for a wide choice of ideal wedding locations. Beyond our natural beauty and amazing year-round weather, we have full services that includes pre-ceremony paperwork, legal advice, professional wedding planners, wedding officiates of most religions. And, of course, our local planners are available to help with everything from catering, to event decoration, photographers and videographers, and group bookings.
Fun fact: Couples can choose to arrive at the wedding or reception in a horse and buggy or in a luxury stretch limo.
What about wedding locations in Aruba?
Aruba has a wide choice of wedding venues on the island whether at our resorts, on the beach at sunset or a range of other romantic settings. Many resorts have complete facilities and services for various types of wedding events and receptions in addition to many of Aruba’s fine restaurants offering elegant private rooms and settings for the couple’s special occasion. Oh, and to keep couples up-to-date we have a 'Beach Brides Blog': http://weddings.aruba.com/
What about couples on a budget? Will they be able to make the most of Aruba?
Absolutely. Aruba has so many great aspects that have nothing to do with how much money you've budgeted for your honeymoon or wedding...the warm people here give you the same welcome regardless of how much money you spend, and our tradition of hospitality means you're served like a queen and king no matter where you stay. With as wide a range of activities as we have, you can always find great couple's fun that won't break the bank. Not to mention the warm, sunny beaches...it doesn't matter what your budget is; the sun shines regardless!
The Last Word: Ed, from your experience why do so many couples who honeymooned in Aruba come back for romantic getaways, vow renewals, and anniversaries?
Simple: Once couples honeymoon in Aruba, they fall in love. Knowing they can rely on the island to be a couple's paradise with idyllic scenery, a laid-back lifestyle, 80-degree year-round weather, they want to return time and time again...couples visit once, and by the time they leave, Aruba feels like a second home to them. Honeymooning couples get the red carpet treatment in Aruba, so they can't wait to come back.
So, our abundant activities, 80-degree year-round weather and some of the finest beaches in the Caribbean, it’s no wonder we’re a hit with honeymooners. Fun fact: Aruba has the highest repeat visitation rate of any island in the Caribbean. So, lastly, Aruba has recognized couple’s desires to renew their vows. That’s why we launched our "Renew Your 'I Do' in Aruba” program. It's attracted scores of married couples to a complimentary vow renewal ceremony at sunset, making for the largest vow renewal celebration in the entire Caribbean. So, for all those love birds out there, mark your calendars -- this year's Aruba Renew I Do celebration is coming up on Wednesday, August 22nd, 2018!