For some of us, the big white wedding is the real deal when it comes to wedding fantasies, but for others, more exotic shores might be calling. Destination weddings are becoming increasing popular, with 1 in 4 Brits now opting to have their nuptial on warmer shores.
Unsurprisingly, one of the most popular destinations for foreign celebrations is Dubai. One of the fastest growing global cities, with over 1 million visitors a year, Dubai is synonymous with luxury, quality and fabulous weather. So what do you need to know about this glitzy metropolis, and how can you say I Do in one of the world's most beautiful cities.
What About the Law? The first thing to say is that a wedding is only legal in Dubai, if one or both partners have UAE residency. For most of us, that won't be the case, in which case a symbolic ceremony is your best option, with the formalities conducted back here in the UK. Some countries allow their citizens to marry legally within the Dubai-based nation embassy, but this is not an option for those hailing from the UK. Same-Sex weddings are prohibited in the UAE
When Should I get Married in Dubai? October- May is the best time to consider a Dubai wedding
Where Should I get Married? Because of strict alcohol licensing laws in the UAE, having a ceremony within a hotel or golf club is your easiest option. Luckily, there is a wealth of fabulous destinations for you to choose from. The Ritz-Carlton is our favourite, and its not difficult to see why. Starting from AED 280, their ceremonies range from the simple to extravagant and everything in between. Its gulf-side location means you can choose to get married right on the beach line itself, or within one of their outstanding ballrooms. With 294 luxurious bedrooms to choose from, your guests and you are guaranteed a beautiful stay. With outstanding culinary delights, and a dedicated coordinator to help you plan the day, its elegance and charm make this an unforgettable venue.
How Much are Suppliers? For a good photographer, expect to pay AED 10 - 12,000 (around £2000), and for flowers, AED 500-700 per arrangement. Hair and MUA will set you back anywhere from AED 1500-5000.
Do I Need a Planner? Getting married at all is often far from simple, but getting married abroad can be more complicated. With UAE laws and legislation often confusing foreign visitors, we would definitely recommend hiring a planner; either a Dubai resident, or a specialist is destination weddings. Many hotels will have their own planner, for example, the fabulous Tania at My Dubai Wedding, works very closely with the Ritz Carlton and can provide a seamless experience for you during your planning process.
There we have it, our whistle-stop guide to getting married in Dubai. We love hearing your questions and thoughts, so please let us know if you would like more information on anything we've discussed!
Image Credit: Bernie & Bindi Photography Planning Credit: Tania - My Dubai Wedding