As Italian wedding planners, we often get asked; “how long does it take to plan an Italian wedding?”
To offer some insight into how we prioritise planning a wedding in Italy, we will look at each service provider sequentially.
Typically the peak wedding period in Italy runs from the last weekend in May, through to mid-September. Weekend dates in those peak months typically get booked up well in advance. If a couple has a set date and venue in mind, we would recommend enquiring and booking at least 18 months before your preferred date. For couples who can afford to be more flexible and who may even have a weekday in mind, then there are always more options available. In this case, you should be thinking of making enquires at least 12 months before.
It is also worth noting that Italian wedding venues in sought after locations such as the Italian Lakes, the Amalfi Coast and Tuscany, are more popular and therefore venues receive more enquiries and tend to get booked out sooner than lesser-known areas, like Puglia and Umbria. This should also be factored into your planning. Remember, your wedding day is only confirmed once your wedding venue in Italy has countersigned your contract and it is, therefore, booked for you. This is by far the most important step in planning your destination wedding.
Once the venue is sorted, it is then important to confirm a photographer and if required, videographer. Venues, photographers and videographers are typically the only service providers which can facilitate one wedding at a time. Most other vendors (florists, caterers, etc.) have teams, and can therefore manage multiple events.
If the venue does not offer food and beverage, then start looking for caterers and asking for proposals. Caterer’s quotes will vary, so you will want to narrow down the ones that fit within your budget and match your requirements. Whether food & beverage is offered by the venue or by an external caterer, we would advise that all couples, before confirming, have a menu tasting. This has to be done out of the wedding season as no ‘good’ caterer has time to offer tastings during this peak time. Usually October to April are the best months for menu tastings.
If your require a civil or religious ceremony, paperwork tends to take around 6 months to complete, so this has to be factored in when deciding whether or not to have a last minute wedding in Italy.
All other services require less time to be organised, however if couples wish to compare quotes and have time to negotiate/revise proposals without the need to rush a decision, then around 4 months is how long it can take to finalise all other details of a wedding.
In summary, from start to finish, we typically recommend at least 12 months to plan an Italian wedding. However, this very much depend on your flexibility and availability to focus on the planning, as well as the requirements and diversity of events you wish to organise. Weddings with a high number of guests and several days of celebrations will obviously require more time than an intimate, one day, affair.
Regardless of your ideal wedding size and requirements, please get in touch
with our Italian wedding planners directly to discuss how to start planning your Italian wedding.