What To Wear To A Destination Wedding: 3 Best Tips

To fully understand what to wear to a destination wedding, consider three factors when building your guest wedding attire. In this guide, you will learn how to use the wedding dress code, venue, and appropriate colors when deciding what to wear to different destination weddings. 

Feel free to browse our blog for specific weddings to know what to wear if you’re attending one. For example, most destination weddings are held by the shore, so you can read what shoes to wear to a beach wedding for the ideal footwear. 

what to wear to a destination wedding


Here Is A Guide On What To Wear To A Destination Wedding


Check the destination wedding dress code

Before anything else, refer to the destination wedding dress code, typically written on the wedding invitation. Just because it’s a beach wedding doesn’t mean you can immediately assume that it will be a casual attire for the guests.

Depending on the couple, destination weddings can be formal, cocktail, semi-formal, or even black-tie. Try on several outfits to see if they’d be appropriate to the destination wedding’s dress code. 

A formal destination wedding will be better with blazers and pants or maxi dresses for female guests, while male guests, on the other hand, should wear the proper suit and tie. But for semi-formal or dressy casual destination weddings, you can consider a jumpsuit or midi dress, then a sportscoat or suit without the tie for women and men. 


Use the proper destination wedding attire for the venue

Besides the wedding dress code on the invitation or wedding website, use the destination wedding venue as the inspiration to know what to wear. For example, tropical destination weddings usually require beach wedding attire, while some outdoor weddings might want something more formal. 

The destination wedding location should also help you decide on the layers and general comfort of what you’re wearing. For example, if you know it will be hot, wear lightweight fabrics. 

It would be best if you also were comfortable throughout the destination wedding, especially with the shoes. If you know it will be slippery, women can opt for lower heels, and men can wear their most comfortable dress shoes. 


Identify the colors appropriate for the destination wedding

The final consideration when deciding what to wear to a destination wedding is the color of your attire. First, you must know to avoid the wedding party and bridal colors as basic etiquette. 

Then, keep in mind the country or place of the destination wedding. Some cultures might view specific colors negatively, even if they are acceptable in the US. 

For example, red and black are colors that typically need clarification from the bride and groom because some countries view them negatively or are reserved for the bride. Refer to what colors should you not wear to a wedding for more information.  


What Do You Wear As A Guest To A Destination Wedding?


Wedding attire for guests to a destination wedding welcome party

Destination weddings often last for two to three days. However, the couple may want a weeklong celebration before the actual wedding on the weekend. 

So for these activities, you want to wear something appropriate to where you’re going, the time of the event, and the activities you’ll do. But if there is no weeklong celebration, the couple might invite guests to a welcome party. 

This is commonly a sit-down formal or semi-formal dinner, but it can also be a cocktail party. Check your invite to know what to wear or ask another guest. 


Wedding attire for guests to a destination wedding reception

After the wedding ceremony, destination weddings usually take advantage of the new location and have an enjoyable party. Therefore, wear something comfortable for dancing and mingling around.

Consider the party outfits for evenings, but maintain modesty. You can also bring a change of shoes or coverup to switch from ceremony attire to reception attire quickly. 

However, some receptions might still be formal or are being held at a conservative venue. If that’s the case, you can maintain what you’re wearing at the destination wedding ceremony. 


Can I Wear Black To A Destination Wedding?

Black is a tricky color to decide if it will be appropriate to wear to a wedding. And for destination weddings, you have to verify if the country or culture does not have a negative connotation with black. 

Black can be associated with bad luck and mourning, which will make it disrespectful for a wedding. But on the other hand, black can still be appropriate for a destination wedding because it is formal and perfect for black-tie affairs or evening receptions. 

Overall, check with someone from the wedding party if you’re unsure. 


What Do Guests Do At Destination Weddings?

Here are some of the activities that guests can typically expect when attending a destination wedding. These are included, especially for a weeklong wedding, to get the most out of the new location. 

  • Welcome party
  • Sightseeing
  • Weeklong cultural activities
  • Wedding weekend
  • Post-wedding celebration



And that’s it! We just found out what to wear to a destination wedding, which depends on the dress code, venue, and culturally appropriate colors for the guest. 

Never assume what to wear, mainly when only based on the type of wedding. But, then, make sure to also dress appropriately for the different events expected at a weeklong destination wedding. 

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