What to Wear for a Destination Wedding?

By  Mac Molli
Updated on 01/24/24
What to Wear for a Destination Wedding?

What to Wear for a Destination Wedding?

By  Mac Molli
Updated on 01/24/24
Groom Hacks

Part of the Groom Hacks

What to Wear for a Destination Wedding?

By  Mac Molli
Updated on 01/24/24

Many couples dream of a destination wedding; who doesn’t want to have their wedding in a beautiful place and enjoy an incredible vacation afterward? Destination weddings can also be amazing for the wedding guests. They often choose to stay a few days and enjoy the getaway. But what do you wear to a destination wedding? Does it need to be as formal as a wedding you might have in a church or other fancy location at home? Should there still be a formal dress code? 

What to wear to a destination wedding can vary depending on the location and theme of the wedding. And the dress code that’s up to the couple getting married, but many opt for a more casual dress code, especially if it’s a beach wedding.
Beach wedding

What to Consider When Picking Your Wedding Dress Code

What to Wear for a Destination Wedding
As the couple getting married, you get to dictate the dress code to your wedding guests. But how do you decide the dress code when you’re having a destination wedding? Here are some things to keep in mind:

The location

The dress code should be appropriate for the location of the wedding. For example, a black-tie dress code may not be suitable for a beach wedding, while casual attire may not be appropriate for a formal wedding at a hotel.

The climate

Consider the climate when choosing the dress code, as this can significantly impact your and your guests’ comfort. If the wedding is in a hot and humid location, guests will appreciate a more relaxed dress code that allows for lightweight fabrics and comfortable shoes.

The time of day

The time of day the wedding can also impact what people should wear, even if you plan to get married in a tropical location. For example, a daytime beach wedding may call for more casual attire. In contrast, an evening wedding at a resort may be more suitable for formal attire.

The theme

If the wedding has a specific theme, the dress code should reflect it. The location can also impact the feel of a wedding, similar to having a theme. For example, a rustic-themed wedding (in a barn or open field) may call for more casual attire, while a garden wedding may call for more formal attire.

Destination Wedding Attire

When deciding the best wedding attire for your destination, there are a few things you want to consider. You want the pictures to look great, and you want to be comfortable. So, consider all the points above when deciding what to wear on your wedding day. 

If you wear a princess-style wedding dress or a tuxedo, you may want your guests to adhere to a formal dress code. If you’re focused on a theme, feel, or general feeling, it is better to be comfortable than formal; a casual dress code is ideal. Since beach weddings are the most popular we will discuss more specifically what to wear for a beach destination wedding in the next sections.

Another thing to consider is local cultural practices. Depending on your wedding destination, there may be certain expectations about what you can and cannot wear to a wedding to be respectful.

Tips for Beach Wedding Attire

For a beach wedding, the attire should be comfortable, stylish, and appropriate for the location. Generally what’s considered a formal beach wedding is much more casual than weddings in other locations.

Here are some suggestions of beach wedding outfits:

Beach wedding outfit for the groom:

  • A light-coloured linen suit or khaki pants with a white dress shirt or a lightweight button-down shirt.
  • A tie is optional, but if you wear one, it should be lightweight.
  • Loafers or boat shoes are appropriate for footwear.
  • A jacket may be optional, depending on the weather.

Beach wedding outfit for the bride:

  • A flowy wedding dress made of lightweight fabrics such as chiffon, organza or tulle that will not weigh down in the sea breeze.
  • Sandals or flat shoes that are easy to walk on sand.
  • A flower crown or hair accessory that is perfect for beach weddings.

Beach wedding outfit for both:

  • Casual and simple attire with minimalistic jewelry is perfect for a beach wedding.
  • Avoid wearing heavy fabrics or layers that might make you uncomfortable in the warm weather.

What’s the difference between a formal and casual beach wedding?

Typically, beach weddings are more casual, but that depends on where the wedding reception is being held. If the reception is on the beach, this tends to be the least formal setting and guests wear casual beach wedding attire. However, if the reception is held at the resort in the evening the dress code may be more formal. 

Destination Wedding Guest Attire

What to Wear for a Destination Wedding
Attending a destination wedding and trying to decide what to wear? Here are some general guidelines to follow when picking your wedding attire:

  1. Check the dress code: The invitation should indicate the dress code, giving you a good idea of what to wear. If the dress code is black tie, then you’ll need a formal gown or tuxedo. If it’s a beach wedding, you’ll need something light and breezy.
  2. Consider the climate: The destination of the wedding can have a significant impact on what you wear. If it’s a tropical location, you’ll want to wear something lightweight and breathable. If it’s a colder destination, you’ll want to dress in layers to stay warm.
  3. Choose suitable fabric: Choosing appropriate fabrics for the climate and dress code is important. For example, if it’s a beach wedding, you might want to wear a lightweight cotton or linen dress.
  4. Accessorize appropriately: Accessories can add a finishing touch to your outfit. Wear a hat, sunglasses, or a statement necklace for a destination wedding.

Here are some specific suggestions for beach wedding guest attire:

  • A sundress or a maxi dress in a lightweight and breathable fabric.
  • Sandals or flat shoes that are easy to walk on sand. Loafers or boat shoes that are appropriate for the beach.
  • A sun hat or a wide-brimmed hat to protect from the sun.
  • Simple jewelry that compliments the outfit.
  • A lightweight button-down shirt with khaki pants or linen pants.
  • Depending on the dress code and weather, a blazer or a jacket may be optional.

Other tips for what to wear for a beach wedding

  • Avoid wearing high heels, as they can be challenging to walk on the sand.
  • Avoid wearing black or dark colors, as they can absorb heat and make you uncomfortable.
  • Dress for the weather. Consider bringing a shawl or light jacket in case it gets chilly in the evening.
  • Consider the wedding dress code, and dress up or down accordingly.
  • Sunscreen is necessary for a beach wedding, so apply it before heading to the ceremony.

Overall, guests should aim to dress comfortably and appropriately for the beach location while respecting the dress code and style of the wedding – beach formal? Or dressy casual?

Destination Wedding Attire FAQs

What’s the dress code for a beach wedding?

The dress code is up to the couple getting married to decide. However, beach wedding attire typically features bright colors, light fabrics appropriate for the heat, and semi-formal accessories. For example, dress pants or chinos with a light button down, a jumpsuit or dressy romper, or a mid-length semi-formal dress.

What not to wear to a beach wedding?

Avoid denim and cotton t-shirts; you probably don’t want to wear black. Only wear shorts or sandals if the invite specifically says it’s a casual dress code. 

Can a guest wear a floral dress to a wedding?

Yes! A floral print outfit (it doesn’t necessarily have to be a dress) can be an appropriate and stylish choice for a wedding. A maxi dress with a floral pattern or a flowery sundress is perfect for a beach wedding, especially if it’s casual. 

What types of shoes do people wear to a beach wedding?

Opt for sandals over heels. But if you’re set on wearing heels, the best route is block heels, especially if the wedding happens on the sand. 

Now that you have a better idea of what to wear to a destination wedding, it’s time to go shopping! 

Visit The Groom Club for More Tips

At the Groom Club, we help grooms up their game at every stage of the wedding process, from the proposal to the honeymoon. Ready to propose? Learn how to make it perfect. Not sure what to wear to your engagement party? We’ve got tips. 

Make the Groom Club your go-to spot for all the latest on how to make your wedding unique and memorable. Discover all our latest articles today and subscribe to our newsletter for more TGC content.

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