Every year, more and more couples opt for destination weddings as opposed to getting married in their own country.

It is simple to understand why Italy continues to be one of the most popular wedding locations. Italians are kind, there is an amazing range of wedding venues, and the quality of the food and services rivals the best in the world!

The variety of settings is simply astounding, ranging from a winter wedding in the Dolomites to the jaw-dropping cliffs of the Amalfi Coast.

But how do you get started? And how can you stay away from pitfalls and disappointments?

Italy Wedding Venues

Planning a Wedding in Italy, the ultimate guide

Your choice of venue will have a significant impact on the outcome of your wedding.

Your initial choice will be to select a smaller geographic area for your region. Otherwise, selecting a wedding location in Italy will be a difficult task.

You’ll have to choose whether you prefer to enjoy views of the sea or a lake, a historic city like Rome or Florence, or the rolling hills and vineyards of Tuscany and Umbria, because Italy is so diverse.

Perhaps you’re searching for some lesser-known gems like the magnificent castles in Piemonte’s Langhe region or the magnificent “masseria’s” of Apulia.

The logistics of your wedding in Italy

Regardless of the region, town, or location you select for your wedding in Italy, you should also consider the logistics of traveling there.

  • How far is the international airport from my venue?
  • How will my guests get from the airport to the location?
  • Do transfers on the wedding day need to be made to my venue?

What can appear simple on Google Maps can be really difficult for a visitor who has never been to Italy. For instance, Tuscany is the most popular location for weddings, followed by the Amalfi Coast. Positano, Amalfi, and Ravello are seaside villages that may be reached in 1 1/2 hours by car from Naples, which is the only airport. When you get to the shore, be prepared for congested, winding roads. As a result, you might wish to provide your guests with some transfer assistance so they can avoid navigating particularly difficult paths.

Planning a Wedding in Italy, the ultimate guide

You should decide on the style of wedding you envision in order to reduce the area and location choice. Is it formal and elegant? A country estate would then be too rustic for your idea, so you might want to think about a luxurious house on Lake Como, a castle in Tuscany, or a Roman villa in Rome. Some areas can provide the full spectrum of alternatives, from casual and rustic to luxurious.

Ask the wedding venue

Here are some crucial questions to to ask a potential wedding venue:

  • Do you offer special prices for midweek or off-peak events?
  • What, if any, musical limitations are there?
  • Do you handle catering in-house or do you hire outside caterers?
  • Do you have any preferred vendors that we must use?
  • What time can I check in and out?
  • Are there any limitations or significant rules that should be remembered?
  • Is there a backup strategy in case it rains?

Planning a Wedding in Italy, the ultimate guide

Rainy day backup is a must!

Italy is a sunny country, yet in August and July there may be torrential rain. Always inquire about the venue’s backup plans in case of inclement weather. Some don’t have one, therefore you’ll need to rent a marquee. Marquees are a costly ticket item; depending on size and kind, they could easily cost well over Eur 20,000. You should only choose sites that have a built-in back up.


Prior to booking any location, it is crucial to decide on your maximum budget for the wedding and to freely discuss it with any potential wedding planner (if you plan on hiring one).

Learn as much as you can about costs because there are a lot of hidden expenses while arranging a wedding, especially when doing so abroad.

Your wedding budget should take into account the following.

Venue rental

It can make up a considerable percentage of the budget.


Lighting varies greatly by location. The budget will vary depending on whether a venue needs a lot of lighting or not. You should check how much lighting the location of your Italian wedding may already have. If your location is a 15th-century castle with very little lighting, fairy lighting, bulb lighting, and other ambient lights create a lovely ambience but can also significantly increase your costs.

Music and entertainment

A wedding DJ in Italy is always the most cost-effective option for music and entertainment, but you should still make a sensible choice because you’ll need an English-speaking DJ who can provide excellent references.

Talking about wedding bands, hiring an Italian wedding band is more cost effective because bands that are travelling from outside of Italy will charge a lot more and will also require that a “rider” be provided with instruments, illumination, and other equipment, which will drive the price up. WeddingMusicBandItaly is free to use and you’ll find the perfect band for your wedding in Italy at an affordable price, no fees!

Tip: don’t miss our guide to the SIAE Licence Fee for Weddings in Italy!

Planning a Wedding in Italy, the ultimate guide

Floral décor

Floral décor is an item that, depending on how sophisticated the design is, may cause the budget to increase. Sometimes, couples underestimate the price of décor. Weddings that look good on Pinterest and Instagram cost a lot of money because of the labor and flowers involved.

Beauty services

Their cost is high when compared to other countries. It is customary in Italian culture to pay a lot for this highly skilled but unquestionably pricy service. The service is available on-site, and a test run is strongly advised. Therefore, if your beauty contacts quote you expensive fees, they are not charging excessively by Italian standards.

Planning a Wedding in Italy, the ultimate guide


An advantage of a venue that can accommodate all of your guests is that your wedding day and budget won’t need to account for complicated logistics or additional transfer expenses. Always check to see if your venue has any special transfer rules or regulations. For instance, some are difficuld to reach and you can only use minivans or other compact vehicles to get there. The cost increases with the number of vehicles. Transferring visitors outside of cities will also need payment of the ZTL tax, which is a permit to move around in the city’s no-traffic zones.
Additionally, make sure that that someone will be in charge of all the logistics because poorly managed logistics may ruin your wedding day.


This is the best part of an Italian wedding is the catering. In contrast to other countries, catering quotes in Italy almost typically include:

  • Full setup including tablecloths, place settings, etc.
  • Prosecco wine and rich finger food make up the aperitif hour.
  • Seated multi-course menu
  • Italian wedding cake
  • Both red and white wines

Planning a Wedding in Italy, the ultimate guide

The menus are always local and reflect the region you have selected. However, nothing is definite, so feel free to change the menu and submit unique ideas. Italy has a lot more flexibility than other countries have.

In Italy, there are numerous renowned caterers who have developed a strong name over many years in each region. These are followed by smaller businesses with a lower level of service reliability. Although they may provide reduced prices, they usually do so by making compromises. In order to prevent problems, some locations will hire a dedicated caterer or service provider to guarantee couples’ satisfaction.

How to manage expectations

The couples that are able to let go of how things are done in their own country will benefit the most from the process of planning a destination wedding in Italy.

Keep in mind that you are getting married in Italy and that some business practices, customs, and procedures will obviously differ from your own during the planning process.

Different does not imply wrong or bad. However, the process won’t always be joyful if you can’t adapt your expectations to the local way of life. A wedding in the Amalfi Coast will be very different from a wedding in Lake Como or Sicily because each region of Italy has its own subculture. In Italy, culture is everything!

Hiring a wedding planner or going solo?

Planning a Wedding in Italy, the ultimate guide

The size and complexity of your event have a big impact on this highly personal question.

Of course, you won’t incur the additional cost of a wedding planner’s charge if you decide to plan your own Italian wedding. Also, it is our experience that wedding vendors will charge more through a wedding planner because sometimes they’re asked for a percentage of their fee. These hidden costs will drive up the price of your wedding in Italy. If you do decide to hire a wedding planner, it might be a good idea to let her/him know that you’re going to ask wedding vendors for quotes directly, and see if that’s ok with her.

In any case, someone will eventually need to supervise and coordinate all services and vendors – at the very least, on your wedding day. And that person shouldn’t be you, or otherwise your wedding day would be quite stressful!

This might not be a problem for smaller weddings, but larger events unquestionably need a lot of organization and oversight to make sure everything goes as planned. Each event takes our team easily hundreds of hours to prepare for. Hiring a coordinator can be a solution to this problem.

Planning a Wedding in Italy, the ultimate guide

Red tape – civil or religious documents

A legally binding marriage in Italy requires the filing of extensive civil papers. Naturally, if you choose to have a symbolic wedding, you may avoid this issue, and more and more couples are making this decision. Beautiful vow exchanges can be performed by trained celebrants.

Brunch The following morning

Even though you and your feet may be sore from dancing all night, the love and memories you shared will have lifted your spirits. The first day as newlyweds should be as celebrated as your engagement.

Welcome to the next chapter of your happily ever after. Venues have the ability to further customize the celebrations. The atmosphere and intensity of the party varies depending on whether it is indoor or outdoor. Indoors offers a sense of gratitude and affection because it is intimate and cozy. The outside is energizing and fascinating.

Buddymoon and honeymoon

After brunch, celebrations don’t have to end. After all, you’re in Itay, surrounded by beauty and culture.

Depending on you and your partner, you can go on a buddymoon with your close relatives and friends to experience more of Italy, ticking more items off your bucket list and starting a lovely new chapter in your marriage.

Your wedding in Italy will be a honeymoon filled with nothing but joy and love. You’ll leave joyful with precious memories in hand.


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