The months and weeks leading up to your wedding day can be stressful… but on the big day, you should be able to relax knowing that all of your hard work has paid off and everything will come together exactly as you’ve planned. This wedding day checklist will show you everything you need to prepare for your wedding so that when the day begins, you can simply enjoy each moment, celebrate with your family and friends, and get amazing photos!
The checklist is geared towards destination wedding brides getting married off the resort. Since there’s a little extra planning required so you don’t leave anything back in your hotel room. You can go through the list a day or two before your wedding, preparing the bags you’ll take with you to your venue.
If you’re a resort bride, chances are this checklist will still be helpful – especially as you pack your bags for your trip to Punta Cana. Follow the list so you can sure you have everything you need for your destination wedding.
Keep in mind:
Your wedding day essentials go way beyond your attire and jewelry. Things like your vows, guest book, and cake topper are items that often get forgotten. While it’s really not the end of the world if you forget something for your wedding, it does cause a little bit of unnecessary stress – which is something we want to avoid so you can fully enjoy your day.
Our wedding day checklist is broken up into 6 sections to make it super easy to follow. And since every wedding is unique, there is plenty of space to write in your own wedding items that will be specific to your day.
I’ll go more in-depth about each section down below, and at the very end, you’ll be able to download the printable version. But here’s the checklist for you now:
Now let’s go into each part, piece by piece.
Wedding Day Checklist: For the Bride
Here you’ll have everything you need to get dressed for the wedding ceremony- and a couple of extras, too. You’ll want to pack your wedding dress, a nice hanger for photos, a veil or hairclip, your wedding shoes, and your jewelry.
You’ll probably be wearing your engagement ring already, so just bring the wedding bands with you. It’s usually best to have both rings (bride and groom) so we can photograph them together. If you have a nice ring box or dish, bring that, too.
Don’t forget to pack what you’ll be wearing underneath your dress. Most dresses have built-in bras, but if yours doesn’t, then make sure you bring one. And don’t forget your underwear. I recommend bringing an extra pair that you’ll change into right before you put your dress on so you can feel extra fresh walking down the aisle. Usually, lingerie isn’t the most comfortable choice, but if you’re feeling sexy (and it works with your dress) then feel free to rock it!
One last thing:
Don’t forget the garter!
Wedding Day Checklist: For the Groom
Next, let’s go over our groom’s attire. The items here may change a little depending on what your groom is wearing for the big day. Make sure he has everything he needs, like his shirt, pants, and suit jacket. Underwear is a must, and don’t forget the socks! Double-check that they don’t have any holes.
Then comes all of the accessories. This is where he can really personalize his look. A tie, watch, belt or suspenders, and shoes. If he’s dressed up in formal attire, he’ll want to add cuff links, a pocket square, and maybe a tie clip, too. He can always add a bracelet or necklace if that’s part of his style. And it’s helpful to have a handkerchief to wipe away those happy tears.
Wedding Day Checklist: Getting Ready
Aside from your wedding attire, there are a few items that you’ll want to bring to the bridal suite for your getting ready. Bring along any gifts that you want to give your fiancé, bridesmaids, and/or parents. Bring the robes or PJs you’ll wear while you’re getting ready. And a comfy pair of slippers or flip-flops.
Bring along any stationary you’d like us to take pictures of – like a wedding invitation and save the date card. If you have any other personalized items, like tumblers, koozies, or welcome bags, feel free to set those out for photos, too.
You’ll want to make a toast with your girls before the ceremony, so bring a bottle of champagne. (You can also coordinate with your wedding planner so they send the champagne straight to the bridal suite.) Just make sure there are enough champagne flutes for you and all your crew. For the groom and his groomsmen, a bottle of whiskey is usually the go-to. Be sure he packs the bottle to bring for his getting ready so he can toast with the guys.
I’d also recommend bringing a speaker so you can have some tunes playing while you get ready for the day. Take it a step further by arranging a Getting Ready Wedding Playlist to help set the vibe for the day.
Remind your bridesmaids to bring a bag, too. They’ll likely be changing into their dresses at the venue, and they’ll need a place to put the clothes they have on, as well as any extras like their slippers or robes.
Personal Care Items
Here we have all the little things that will make you feel your best on your wedding day. I’ve made this list assuming that you’ll have a hair and makeup artist – so none of those items (makeup, hairspray, etc.) will be on the list. If you are doing your own hair or makeup, however, use the “Extra” section to list out all the items you’ll need to get glammed up for the day.
Check with your MUA to confirm if she’ll bring fake eyelashes for you or if you need to bring your own. And don’t forget the eyelash glue.
Before you apply lipstick, make sure your teeth are clean. Here’s where the toothbrush, toothpaste, and floss will come in handy. Imagine if you had a piece of pepper or cilantro stuck in your teeth as you were walking down the aisle. Doesn’t that sound like a nightmare?
If you wear contacts, be sure to bring an extra pair just in case. Eyedrops or contact solution may also be helpful.
Here’s another tip:
Choose a special wedding perfume that you’ll only wear on your wedding day and then during your trip in Punta Cana. Our sense of smell is so closely linked to memory that every time you smell the scent in the future, you’ll instantly be transported back to your wedding day in Punta Cana. And all the amazing memories will come flooding back!!
In order to solidify the connection, be sure to choose a new perfume that you haven’t worn before. That way, it’s not connected to any past memories – it’ll only be linked to this special day.
For the Wedding Day
These are the biggies. Your wedding vows. Guest book. Cake topper. Wedding favors. Personalized decor items. Bouquet charms. Etc. Etc.
If you’re doing a unity ceremony (like mixing sand or jumping the broom) bring everything you need to complete the task. If you’re having a civil ceremony, be sure you bring all the documents you need – and pens to sign!
Don’t forget any traditional or religious items to make your day complete.
Here, you’ll also want to prepare your final vendor payments and tips. I recommend preparing separate envelopes for each vendor. You can hand them off to your wedding planner or a trusted guest who can deliver them to the right person when needed. And bring some extra cash to tip the staff members who provide exceptional service to you and your guests.
Wedding Emergency Kit
Every wedding has unexpected moments where things don’t go exactly as planned. Preparing an emergency kit can help these last-minute surprises go a little smoother.
Things like a pair of scissors, bobby pins, bandaids, and a sewing kit can all come in handy. I’d also recommend a pain reliever and some antacids just in case. Fashion tape and super glue can be used in a pinch, as well as tweezers and q-tips.
You never know what can happen so it’s best to be as prepared as possible.
Every wedding is different so I’m sure you’ll have a few items that aren’t on my list. Feel free to write them in this section.
If you’re bringing a lot of your own decor or DIY items, be sure to list everything you need here. Are you making your own wedding signs? Or will the venue provide all the signs for you? Maybe you want to display a few of your framed engagement photos. Or you have a cut-out of your dog. Whatever it is, write it down so you don’t forget to bring it with you on the big day!
Here are a few of my recommended extras:
- Paper and pens for any notes you want to write
- A phone charger
- An extra pair of shoes to change into at the end of the night
- An extra bag or two to carry wedding items back to the hotel
What am I forgetting?
I’m sure you know the feeling. Take a couple of days before your trip to Punta Cana to get organized with all of your wedding details. I’m sure your mind will be running a little crazy trying to think of anything you could forget. So allow yourself the time and space you need to feel confident that you have everything covered.
It’s not the end of the world if you forget something. Keep calm, and carry on. Your wedding day will be amazing, no matter what.
Destination Wedding Packing Tips
Speaking of carry-on…
I recommend that you and your groom carry your wedding attire with you on the plane. A hard-shelled carry-on is usually the best option. If your dress doesn’t fit inside, consider a Wally Bag or Garment Bag for travel. The flight attendants will usually let you hang your dress in the pilot’s closet or lay it flat across the top of the overhead compartment.
Recruit some of your trusted guests to carry on essential wedding items. This way you don’t have to worry about lost luggage. Everything will be ready for your day.
Wedding Day Checklist
Finally, the time has come!
You can download the printable checklist here.