By Jared Benoff | Published on March 3, 2023

According to the New York Times, 2022 was a record year with over 2.5M weddings. After two years of being stuck at home and rebooking (sometimes multiple times!) couples were eager to tie the knot and celebrate surrounded by loved ones. And we get it. Zoom weddings just aren’t the same, especially when compared to destination weddings. 

Our boutique, independent, family owned travel agency has been helping people plan their travel for 35+ years. For the last 10 years, we’ve focused on destination weddings primarily in Mexico and the Caribbean, and we’ve won numerous awards, including from The Knot, Wedding Wire, AMResorts, Palace Resorts, Apple Leisure Group, and more. Most recently, we received Karisma Hotels and Resorts’ highest recognition, the Hall of Fame Award

We’ve helped plan a lot of weddings already this year, so we figured it’d be helpful to break down some of the top destination wedding trends for 2023. To help us identify some of the most popular trends, we analyzed data from 80 of our most recently booked weddings! 

Below are a few trends and predictions of what you can expect if you’re planning a destination wedding in 2023 and beyond. 

1. Mexico is the most popular destination

Top destination wedding trends | Mexico

Source: Wedding Wire


Mexico remains the top destination if you want to plan a destination wedding. 

Of the 8,000+ clients planning to travel to destination weddings with our team this year, about 63% are headed to Mexico, 27% are headed to the Dominican Republic, and 8% are headed to Jamaica

We don’t expect this trend to change in the near future as new resorts continue to be built in Mexico, especially within a one-hour drive from Cancun International Airport. This proximity to Cancun International Airport is the sweet spot — your guests will spend more time sitting by the beach and less time sitting in a car. 


2. The top resorts offer activities for the whole family

Top destination wedding trends | The Grand at Moon palace cancun

Source: The Grand at Moon Palace Cancun


Our destination wedding clients’ friends and families tend to be multigenerational, and couples are keeping that in mind when they choose a resort to tie the knot at. Many couples look for midsize resorts (300-600 rooms) that offer something for everyone – multiple restaurants, bars, pools, room price points, and activities for everyone from the kids to the grandparents. 

Here are our most popular resorts for a destination wedding in 2023:

3. Groups sizes keep growing

In 2021, as things slowly opened up again, many clients were seeing about 50% of the people from their invite list attend. That number has crept up as we head into 2023 – we’re now seeing as many as 60-70% of our couples’ invited guests attend! 

And it’s not just that more people are choosing to attend weddings, but couples are now inviting more people, too. Our average wedding in 2022 booked 38 rooms. In 2023, our average wedding has booked 43 rooms, with multiple weddings booking well over 100 rooms. 


4. Intimate weddings are still in

Although group and venue contracts sometimes make weddings under 15 or 20 rooms difficult, we still speak to plenty of couples who are looking to escape with a few close friends and family for a weekend together to tie the knot. 

In cases like this, couples sometimes even have more flexibility in choosing a resort or destination and can go to a more far off locale like Costa Rica or St. Maarten. 

5. Multi-day affairs 

Destination wedding trends 2023 | South asian and Indian weddings

Source: Rishtey Destinations


One of the biggest trends for 2023 is that people are choosing to host multiple events for their loved ones. What used to be a welcome party the first day, followed by a ceremony and reception the next day has turned into much more. 

We have a team that focuses exclusively on South Asian weddings, at which multiple events and multi-day affairs are standard. But now, other cultures are extending their celebrations with things like a “neutral palette tequila tasting” or a “welcome pool party.” Couples are also shying away from the traditional departure brunch and opting for a boozy catamaran ride instead for folks staying an extra day. 

6. Duration of stays are increasing

Along the lines of the previous trend of multi-day themed affairs, we’re seeing the average hotel stay push from an average of 3 nights to 5 nights. 

One reason for this is that some resorts have increased their 3-night minimum to a 4- or 5-night minimum. Another reason is that couples want to give their guests the opportunity to stay longer so they’re not traveling such a long way for such a short amount of time. 

7. Fall remains most popular, but winter months are catching up

One of the top questions people ask us when planning their destination wedding is about what month is “best”. What they’re typically looking for is guidance on price, venue availability, and weather. According to the Knot, October followed by September are the most popular months to get married.

When it comes to destination weddings, we see similar trends with fall being the most popular, although the season tends to start a bit later due to the Hurricane season. In 2023, we expect November to be the most popular month for a destination wedding, with October, September, and June not far behind. 

February has become an increasingly popular month to host a destination wedding because it gives people a good reason to flee the winter cold!  

8. Mid-week and mid-day celebrations are in 

Destination wedding trends 2023 | Moon Palace Jamaica

Source: Moon Palace Jamaica

Unsurprisingly, Saturday is still the most popular day to get married. But with so many weddings, in 2021, 2022, and 2023, Saturday availability booked up quickly. As a result, we’re seeing many clients opt for a Friday or Sunday celebration. 

The upside of a Friday or Sunday celebration means you can extend your time together. For example, with a Sunday celebration, many of your guests will arrive Thursday or Friday, and you can all enjoy the full weekend together before the big festivities on Sunday. Most people will then fly back home on Monday or Tuesday. 

Because of limited availability at resorts, some of our clients decide to host their celebration mid-week in order to secure the venue of their choice. At the end of the day, people are going to be traveling to your destination wedding for a few days, so as long as you speak to your loved ones and settle on a day that works for everyone, a Tuesday wedding can work as perfectly well as a Saturday! 

To make a mid-week wedding even more enticing, some resorts are now offering incentives for couples to host non-Saturday receptions. For example, Karisma resorts offers a “Cash for your bash” promotion that increases your perks for non-Saturday events. 

Recap: Top destination wedding trends for 2023

After analyzing our most recent weddings of 2023, we’ve identified 8 destination wedding trends this year:

  1. 1. Mexico is the most popular destination.
  2. 2. The top resorts are all-inclusive and offer activities for the whole family.
  3. 3. Group sizes keep growing. 
  4. 4. Intimate weddings and elopements are difficult but not impossible.
  5. 5. Multi-day, themed affairs are more popular than ever.
  6. 6. The average length of stay is increasing.
  7. 7. November is the most popular month for a destination wedding.
  8. Saturday is the most popular day for a destination wedding, but closely followed by Friday and Sunday.

As we finalize our 2023 destination weddings and are deep in the planning process for 2024 weddings, we’re excited to see what future trends will hold as people look to curate special experiences for their loved ones!  

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About The Author

Jared Benoff

Jared is a certified destination wedding travel advisor and has been recognized as a top agent by Palace Resorts, Karisma Resorts, Lomas Hospitality, and Hyatt Inclusive Collection.

He caught the travel bug early in his life as his parents (the founders of Vacationeeze!) instilled a passion for travel and adventure in him and his siblings.


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