Travel Advice

The Overrated Outdoor Hawaii Wedding Reception

Oh boy, am I going to sound like a sourpuss here.  But I am not a fan of the outdoor Hawaii Wedding Reception.

I know what you’re saying, “Steven, I have this vision.  I saw these pictures.   It’s in my dream.  It looks so romantic.”

And that’s when myself, as the realist wedding planner, has to bring you a bit down to earth.  Or at least play devil’s advocate so there are no surprises.

Here’s why I am not a fan of the outdoor reception.

  • OUTDOOR RECEPTIONS ARE EXPENSIVE – There’s a lot of moving parts when you plan something outdoors.  Everything from the dance floor to the table fork, to the kitchen, needs to be rented.  Sometimes, you even need to rent the bathrooms, depending on how secluded you want to go.  These cost get pretty wild.  Sometimes, astronomical.
  • HUMIDITY/TEMPERATURE – If you’re getting married in the summer, humidity in Hawaii can jack itself up to 90%.  It’s so humid, that you’ll probably have another ecosystem forming under your wedding dress.   It can get so humid sometimes in Hawaii that I will go to the movie theaters and watch chic flicks just to cool off.   Humid weather is not good for photos.  Sweaty armpits, matted hair, oily foreheads.   You get the picture.
  • BUGS, BUGS, AND BUGS – I hate flying roaches.   Well, I hate roaches period.  But at outdoor weddings, they are there.  So are flying termites.   And not only do bugs get you from the air, they get you from below.  There can be an ant nest right under your head table.  It has happened before.  And then there are mosquitos.  They just love fresh tourist meat.  They really do.    By the way, bugs are attracted to lights.   I bet you know that :)

If you’re wondering about the view and the scenery.  They only look good in the pictures, most of the time.  When we take those photographs, long exposures can bring out that mountain pretty well.  But to the naked eye, you won’t’ be able to see anything but tent.

What do I recommend for outdoor venues?
Well, if you want an outdoor reception, make sure you book something on the west side of Oahu, near the ocean, and on a property that is well manicured – like a hotel.  The more you go inland, the more problems you’ll have with bugs.

My best choice for a reception?
Private rooms at high-class restaurants.   You’ll get a great view, no fear of inclement weather, you’ll have air conditioning, there will be no bugs.  Oh best of all, you can usually dance the night away and not worry about sound curfews at 8 pm.  You can also try having your reception at a vacation rental.  There is a handful of them that do weddings, and they are just absolutely the best.

Check out this awesome New Years Day wedding at a vacation rental.

me The Overrated Outdoor Hawaii Wedding Reception
I'm self-employed, so I pretty much do everything around here, from photography and video production, to the organization of all of my weddings. As you can see, I'm also the head writer too! If for some reason you can't reach me at my direct line, or my toll free number, feel free to hit me up on my personal cell at (808) 489-7633. Call anytime...well, almost anytime. Don't call on Superbowl Sunday or when the Philadelphia Eagles are playing!
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