Your wedding ceremony sets the mood for celebrating your commitment with close friends and family, and it makes everything you two have done to get there take on a special meaning. The person who delivers the words you choose to express that meaning is very important and you want to feel comfortable having them. A brief appearance that kicks off the whole event, this is why you should carefully select the person for this role. Here are some useful tips on how to pick the right wedding officiant for your wedding in Italy.
Before you commit, set up a skype call to meet your wedding celebrant. Planning a destination wedding has become much easier since you can meet any local Italian vendor personally through an online skype call – and it’s free for both sides so there’s no excuse not to do it!
Speaking with your celebrant directly allows you to:
– Evaluate how well s/he speaks your language. Your celebrant should be able to speak English clearly and smoothly, without a heavy accent that could interfere with the meaning behind your ceremony words.
– Hear how their voice sounds and projects. If your group is small you may not need a P.A. system as long as the celebrant’s voice can be heard (usually with up to 20-30 guests you won’t need extra audio)
– Ask questions spontaneously. Just like in a job interview, you may prepare some questions to ask but others may pop up along the way, so just ask them!
Here are some questions you may want to ask your Italian wedding officiant:
1. What are their fees including travel and overnight expenses?
2 . What do fees include in terms of resources (sample material), guidance and counseling, wedding certificate, rehearsals?
3. What are payment timings (deposit, final balance) and methods of payment they accept?
4. How many hours are included before and after the ceremony? (There are often unpredictables on the wedding day and you want to be sure that you will not be charged extra for events beyond your control)
5. How long they’ve been performing weddings and/or how many weddings they have celebrated?
6. How many sample ceremonies will they provide and how many revisions can you make?
7. How will you work together? Can you write your own vows? What are the timings for completing the text, choosing music, assigning readings to guests, etc.
8. Are they willing to perform special rituals such as handfasting or unity candle?
9. Are they comfortable with any religious elements such as readings from the scriptures, smashing the glass?
10. What is their dress code on the wedding day? You may want to assure they wear dark colors like black or dark blue, and that male officiants wear a suit and tie while female officiants wear a long gown/skirt or slacks.
Depending on whether you have a wedding planner or not, your celebrant may give you guidance on set up, logistics, and tips for your processional/recessional.
To see a selection of companies providing wedding officiants in Italy, see our celebrants page.