How to Style your Destination Wedding on a Budget

If you’re celebrating your wedding in a far-off destination, much of your budget may be spent on travel arrangements and accommodation, leaving less cash to spend on decor.

Luckily, there are many options to stretch modest budgets to the limit while still creating a wedding venue that looks spectacular.

Whether planning a beach wedding or a cozy wedding retreat, here are some top tips for creating a dream destination wedding on a tight budget.

Natural Touches

Take a look at your venue’s surroundings and see if you can incorporate some natural elements into your wedding decor. For example, shells can add a rustic touch to the edges of your aisle runners. To save money on flower arrangements, opt for flowers that are in-season and abundantly available in the local area at the time of your wedding.

Streamer Curtains

For the backdrop at the top table, streamer curtains are a flat-pack solution that won’t break the bank. Use strips of creped or light paper and experiment with colors and layering of strands. The more strands you include, the merrier.

Paper Lanterns

Strings of paper lanterns are a long-standing wedding decor trend. No matter the color or design, they provide a beautiful visual impact. As a flat-packed package, they easily slip inside your suitcase for the trip.


Streams of ribbons are small and lightweight to pack and can be used as intricate detailing around cutlery, fresh flowers, trees, anything and everything in your wedding venue.

Fairy Lights

Image Credit: Maxpixel

Fairy lights are the ideal cost-saving solution to accent lighting. They are lightweight and inexpensive and can be incorporated easily into your decor scheme. Solar-powered fairy lights work best for outdoors, as they are safe to use, flexible and not dependent on an electrical outlet.


Twinkling candles make for a romantic, atmospheric touch to any dining setting. They provide a soft, flattering light, that won’t overwhelm your evening scenery. They can also be sourced cheaply when you arrive at your dream wedding destination.


Bunting is an easy sewing DIY you can do before you the big day, and there’s an abundance of designs you can create. Make some paper bunting, customize it with letters, messages, anything you like to suit your design scheme.

Car Decorations

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

The bride and groom’s wedding vehicle wouldn’t be complete without a little flair. Self-adhesive streamers and rosettes, or more creative car decal solutions, can be found cheaply and packed in advance. However, do check that the rental company will allow you to use your own car decorations, they may have some restrictions on what you can do.

Movie Projector

If you want to save money on the main ‘stage’ or focal point of your wedding reception, consider hiring a projector to play a slideshow of photos and videos of the happy couple. This will save you from having to decorate the wall behind the top table and will provide a source of entertainment during the wedding speeches.

Luggage Tags

Since your wedding is travel themed, play-up to this in your wedding scheme and use luggage tags as decorative touches. Luggage tags can also be used as place setting cards, table decorations, or wedding guest book note cards.


Image Credit: Pxhere

Fabric drapery for everything from walls, to ceilings and banisters, can be created on a tight budget. Use muslin cloth and dye it the colors you want. Tip: drapery doesn’t have to be made from heavy fabric to create the same regal feel. Combined with your floral arrangements, carefully arranged drapery can create a stunning backdrop to any wedding setting.

Games and Novelties

Your destination wedding is an adventure, a time for excitement and cutting-loose. Take some games for your guests to play at your wedding. This will give your wedding photographer a chance to capture some magical moments of your guest’s natural smiles and personalities on camera.

Instant Camera

For some guest entertainment, take an instant camera to your wedding and create a photo booth area at your reception for your guests to take and display pictures. Instant camera snaps add a fun touch to your wedding photo collection and provide your guests with a souvenir shot for the day.

Double-Duty Details

Combine your place settings with your wedding favors, to help you travel light and save some time and planning whilst you’re away. Personalized wedding favors, like flat-pack boxes and candy bags can be used to guide your guests to their seats and contain small, personalized favors and treats.



When it comes to planning a destination wedding, your budget on venue decorations may be restricted. However, there are many options to create a stunning and personalized space for guests to enjoy. Packing what you can in advance can save you lots of money and last-minute stress.

Author Bio:


Hollie co-writes the Holly and the Ivy blog and works as a freelance writer. She’s a Pinterest addict and loves writing about wedding decor and interior design. Hollie is passionate about DIY and likes to share her favourite tutorials and projects.

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