Hi I’m Kelly from Boho Weddings and Events and I’m a wedding planner and wedding blogger. I specialise in planning unconventional weddings across the North of England and also weddings in Ibiza. Why Ibiza? Well I got married there myself so decided to use the knowledge and experience I gained when planning my own wedding to help other couples across the UK plan their own weddings in Ibiza.
Ibiza weddings take up about a quarter of my bookings but about 90% of my enquires…not a very good ratio really, but I think that’s because people generally have pretty unrealistic expectations of how much a wedding in Ibiza is going to cost, and that’s what The Wedding Community invited me onto the blog to discuss.
When I first planned my own wedding for 2009 we started with a church wedding; 80-100 guests with a reception in a marquee in Cornwall, and all in all it was coming to £15 – £20K. We realised about 6 months into the planning that this really wasn’t for us so we cancelled everything and moved our plans to Ibiza…we cut down the guest list to 35 people but it still ended up costing us £15 – £18K…why? Because weddings in Ibiza aren’t cheap.
I think people presume that getting married abroad is going to be a lot cheaper; in some countries it can be, but don’t expect that if you are planning a wedding in Ibiza. When couples first get in contact they all say the same thing. ‘We want a chilled out wedding, nothing too fancy, just something relaxed and laid back, nice food and dancing – well this is still going to cost you! Most people who enquire have about 50 – 60 guests and they all seem to come to me with budgets ranging from £3K – £8K for the whole thing…venue, food, drink, minister, flowers, photographer, entertainment. It just isn’t possible!
A few examples; I have one couple getting married in August. Their venue with food and drink for 50 guests has cost them €14,000. Another couple who have 40 guests in September are paying €8,000. But why?
Let’s look at the key elements of an Ibiza wedding and why they cost what they do…
The popular wedding venues will charge you a premium if you want exclusivity. Think about it, most venues will have to close their doors to the general public for the day so they need to make their money up somehow. Most venues in Ibiza aren’t designated wedding venues like they are in the UK; they are beach bars and restaurants that will normally be open for a late lunch or an early dinner. Your wedding will bring them guaranteed trade but it may also lose them money in regular visitors, especially if you only have a small wedding party.
Some venues will add on extras for things like brining in your own DJ instead of using their in house one; you may think you are saving money by bringing in a mate who can play but they will then charge you for the privilege. Others will charge an entertainment fee for things like fire eaters, which can be as much as €500.
Villas are a great way of keeping the cost down as you have your wedding reception and accommodation all in one place. These range from the very cheapest at €2,000 a week up to anything really. I have one on my books for €50,000 a week. On average you’re looking at €6,000 – €8,000 a week. Remember though you can offset some of this by charging your guests to stay for the week. BE AWARE that a lot of villas won’t allow weddings on sight, and those that do may well charge you for the privilege, sometimes about €600.
Time of the Year:
Prices vary widely depending on the time of year. Late April, early May and October are classed as low season, late May, June and September are Mid-season, and July and August are peak season. Holding a wedding in peak season can really bump up the price (plus it can sometimes just be too hot!). This becomes a problem if you are tied to children’s summer holidays as you will always end up paying extra.
Food is one of the factors that will really bump up the price, whether it’s provided by the venue or a private cater you hire in for a Villa wedding. On average a venue will charge you €50 – €85 a head for a 3 course meal…some will charge extra for canapés…and yes that does include that chilled out Ibiza BBQ that you asked for…still the same price. So really the less people you invite the less it’s going to cost!
For a Villa you may get the price down a bit depending on what catering company you use, but it’s going to be anything between €40 – €90.
Now this is a tricky one, do you pay or for your guests’ drinks? Personally I did and most of my couples are offering some sort of free bar for their guests. You have to take into account that your guests have flown all the way to Ibiza, the least you can do is feed and water them for the day!
Drinks packages for the meal at a venue can be about €20 – €40 a head. Venues then add in what is called an open bar, and many will operate this for a minimum of 2-3 hours. An open bar is charged per person per hour and on average this is €16 per person per hour. This gives your guests unlimited drinks for that amount of time. So for 3 hours it will work out at €48 per person.
REMEMBER that as you will be getting married a lot later (normally about 6pm) than you usually would in the UK you won’t have to pay for drinks as long.
If you are hiring in private caters it’s going to be about €40 per person for the dinner drinks and open bar, which normally consists of beer, wine and 4 spirits.
All flowers are imported onto the island so you will pay a premium for this.
This will be on top of the price you will be quoted by the venue and you will also be charged for IVA/VAT which is 8% as standard. Some places will also add on a service charge which is also a percentage of the final bill.
So there you go, that’s what it’s all going to cost. Of course I haven’t mentioned the price of the minister, photographer, cake or transport…or the planning fees!
As you can imagine the average budget that I’m given on first enquiry just isn’t going to stretch, which I guess is the reason why so many people never get back to me once I explain to them how much it’s going to cost!
On the plus side Ibiza is an amazing place to get married, it really is truly magical! Your guests will have an amazing time and the flights are regular so people can either pop over for a couple of days or stay the whole week. There is a great variety of places for people to stay, you can totally live it up or you can down size and stay somewhere cheap and cheerful.
Your wedding pictures will be awesome…and what could be better than that Ibiza sunshine in your wedding pictures as well as those sunsets?