Planning weddings are always a ton of fun. Choosing a color scheme, your flowers, a dress, tasting the cakes and food. Let's face it, these tasks are enjoyable for a lot of women. However, the one aspect of the wedding that is actually quite essential when one marries abroad, but often somewhat overlooked, is the transport. Apart from the fancy car the bride and groom will ride in, the rest of the transport issue tends to be that loathsome task we like to put off or forget about, as there is really nothing sexy or fun about it. That said, without well planned transport, a seamlessly planned wedding can hit many a road bump. Especially here in Italy. I've put together some points I suggest everyone planning an event in Italy consider and work into their budgets.
When you choose your ceremony and or reception venue, try to consider how large a vehicle can ride on the roads that lead to the venue. If the venue is in a beautiful location with tremendous views, chances are, it was pretty hard to get to even in a small car. Make a point of asking the owner how large of a vehicle can travel on the road and where parking for that vehicle would be throughout the course of the evening.
If your wedding is taking place inside a historic center, like Lucca, you'll want to know what the city rules are for incoming large vehicle traffic. In Lucca, for example, only 8 seaters or smaller can enter inside the walls. All other large vehicles must drop-off guests outside the gates and guests must walk in from that point. Consider that inside a historic center, you may need to provide a permit for the cars that enter, as traffic is often strictly controlled by the local government.
Now, when you are creating a budget for all of this transport, try to remember that the easier to get to locations will end up costing you less. If you are in a tough to get to spot, where only a 16 seater max can drive, then you are forced to hire more small cars, therefore more drivers, and therefore more money out of your pocket. If you can manage to find a venue that can allow a 55 seater to pick-up and drop-off guests, that is a great savings to you.
Not planning to provide transport for your guests? That is certainly an option, but then you should check with local taxi services to make sure there are going to be plenty of drivers on duty the night of your wedding. Or perhaps let the villa know that you plan to just have guests call cabs to go home at night. They maybe able to let local drivers know that it is going to be a big night for them.
A final note on vintage cars. They certainly do add a touch of nostalgic glamour to your big entrance and they are fab in the photos. But they are called vintage cars because no one makes them anymore. Which means that they can break down prior to your big day and parts of these cars can be very hard to find. Often the owner has to have a part specially built and it can take a lot of time. If you love the idea of arriving in a vintage car, you don't need to give up on the idea, but you should choose from a place that has a deep garage of vintage cars. That way, if the model you chose is out of service, they can easily substitute you with another unique car. When you make your choices, choose a first choice car and and a back-up car. Also, tell the garage owner where the event is to be held. He may suggest other vintage cars that are more appropriate, especially if there are tricky, steep hills for the car to take on. Better to send a peppy, light Spider in that case than a Rolls Royce.
At the end of the day, well planned transport can be the icing on the cake. It's the inconspicuos element of your wedding that no one notices when done well, yet is usually a big reason why everyone comes away with the impression that the wedding went so “smoothly”.