Becky: Planning a destination wedding comes with all the tasks on the checklist that any wedding comes with. The celebrant, the flowers, the food. But what about the entertainment? Do you go with what your overseas venue recommends or are you looking to take a band from the UK with you? It’s a great idea to have music and entertainment from the culture of the country you’ve chosen to marry in but what about the music and entertainment that you know and love too? Today we’re joined by Recommended supplier Music HQ. Suzie is going to tell you how to go about booking your destination wedding band.
You could book a local band, and although this is undoubtedly the cheapest option the vibe and quality may not be to be the same standard that you’re used to from a band in the UK. This can be down to a number of things including unfamiliar song choices and language barriers. So it is worth thinking about flying a group out that you can trust to really bring the party!. – Suzie
Suzie: f you do decide to fly a band from the UK make sure you choose an experienced, professional band who are well-traveled. Avoid hiring a band who have never left the country before, and don’t have group airport experience. This know-how is important when it comes to flying out instruments and airport etiquette. You also don’t want them missing the flight by getting overexcited in departure lounge Wetherspoons and treating the trip like a holiday.
This international expertise also massively helps when it comes to language barriers during soundcheck. A professional destination wedding band will be able to help minimise any stress – and it can get stressful with unfamiliar equipment. Inexperienced bands may crumble under the pressure.
There is no getting away from the fact that this is going to cost a pretty penny, but if you appreciate the value of great live music, it is SO worth it. An experienced 4 piece professional destination wedding band will set you back on average between £2500/£3000.
You will also need to consider equipment hire on top of the bands fee. With ‘production’, you can go as basic or as huge as your budget allows. If you want your wedding reception to look like a Beyonce concert there is no cheap way of doing it. If you are happy with a standard wedding band set up then you will be able to keep the costs down. The equipment hire will be a hefty expense whichever way you cut it up, but it is an essential part of the show and it is imperative that it is of professional quality.
Some bands are able to transport their own equipment for you, buy more often than not the band turn up to the wedding and the equipment is there ready to rock. It is generally organised by the couple or the wedding planner.
If you would prefer the band to bring their own equipment it would be best to get yourself a quote for both options and see which is most cost effective for you. Be warned, whether you hire locally or have the band transport their own ‘gear’ the price can be the same as or sometimes more than the band’s actual fee.
A great starting point for you to source the equipment yourselves would be to ask the venue who they recommend for ‘production’ or ‘sound & lighting’. It is likely that they have a supplier who they regularly work with. Prices will vary from country to country but you could be looking anywhere between £1000 to £5000 for a standard set up, depending on the band line-up size, quality of equipment, and added extras such as lights and staging.
When you receive a band’s technical rider it is unlikely to make any sense to you, but if you send it to the venue’s recommended supplier they will know exactly what is required. Don’t be put off by all the technical stuff. An experienced band will be able to liaise with your sound and lighting company on your behalf and make sure everything is in place. If the venue doesn’t have a recommended supplier, your band may have a supplier they have worked with in that particular country before, so don’t be afraid to ask.
So what do the band bring with them? They would fly over smaller instruments such as guitar, bass, sax. Things like the staging if you are having any, mixing desk, speakers, lights, monitors and drums will be sourced locally by the couple or the wedding planner. I will just mention again, that it is really important that the equipment provided is top quality as this has a big impact on the overall sound of the band.
Flights should always be discussed before booking to check the bands preferred airport and best flight times. If you book in advance, you can save lots. I would personally recommend flying the band out the day before the wedding to avoid the stress and worry of delayed flights etc. Although this may cost you a little extra, the peace of mind is worth every penny!
The band will need taxis to and from the airport, accommodation, and venue so make sure you consider transfers in your budget.
Your band will require you to cover their accommodation costs. Make sure the hotel is pleasant. You want your band to feel well looked after so they put on their best show for you. It is also advisable to get accommodation close to the venue for all-around ease and to save on transfer costs.
They will also need to eat. Most professional bands will require food for the duration of the trip. This would normally be full board at the hotel or an agreed allowance generally between 30 & 40 euro per person per day. A bit to eat at the venue may also be required depending on timings and logistics.
We hope this has given you some useful info and helps you on your way to booking the perfect band for your big day abroad.
Becky: Thanks so much to Suzie for joining us to break all of that down. You can check out our IGTV for a video form Suzie where she talks you through the process too. If you think booking a band for your destination wedding is a must then get in touch with Music HQ to find a great band. You can follow them over on Instagram and they also have some great videos over on their YouTube channel too.