- Frequently Asked Questions
- Your Wedding Day
- Gratuity Guidelines
Frequently Answered Tybee Island Wedding Questions
Hopefully you will find the answer to yours!
There are answers to our wedding company specifically, and some wedding questions in general on this page! Also, at the bottom of the page, please find some additional considerations to make your beach wedding the best, easiest and most wonderful day of your life.
Q ~ What happens if it rains?
If it rains, we do the best we can. But remember, we’re a beach wedding company. We want you to be comfortable with the alternate decision – can you do it at your reception location? Do you want to get wet? (we will!) Bring umbrellas? How many people do you have with you? Do you have rentals (** see rental policy below**). Please consider the possibility that if it rains, you’ll need a backup plan. We won’t cancel your wedding on account of rain.
Q ~ What happens if there is a hurricane?
Hurricane?! We don’t like hurricanes on Tybee. We haven’t had one in almost 100 years. However, if there is ever the possibility that there’s a hurricane, we will only cancel if there is a mandatory evacuation. In which case, we all have to leave, but we can all come back. If there is a mandatory evacuation, we will postpone your wedding. If there is not a mandatory evacuation, please see “What happens if it rains?”
Q ~ Can’t you get my marriage license for me?
No. Your marriage license is a legal document for which the bride and groom will have to go together to a probate court to get. If you are Georgia residents, you can get it in your county, or you will need to make plans to get it Monday thru Friday (don’t forget about legal holidays!) at the Chatham County probate court in Savannah. 912-652-7267
Q ~ Why are you less expensive?
We are a home-based internet business. We do not have the overhead of a location or venue. We don’t hire out for our basic services (officiant, coordinator, beach setups ~ we do this ourselves, so we’re not hiring someone else) so we don’t have to mark up to make money on those items. We live on Tybee, so we are just minutes from your ceremony, no matter where it is on the island! Our vendors love us! We are very loyal with a lot of our vendors and we bring them a lot of business and they pass their gratitude on to us and we pass our gratitude on to you. If you need something — flowers, cake, chairs, archway, catering– let us get them for you. Chances are we can get you a great price on the things you need.
Q ~ Why should I get married on Tybee Island?
Tybee is a beautiful, small, funky coastal island in the sub-tropics. Most people don’t realize Georgia has beaches, and we have the best! It’s warm most of the year – and even during our ‘cold times’ it’s still not that cold! It’s very easy to get your marriage license in Georgia – you just need a driver’s license (see our Probate Court page if you don’t have one) and there is no blood test, no waiting period and no expiration date. If you’re picking up your license today, you can get married today! If you’re visiting in Tybee to plan your wedding, you can get your license today and use it in 6 months when you come back.
Tybee is actually very centrally located in Georgia. We’re close to Savannah (20 minutes), Hilton Head (45+ minutes), Jacksonville (2 hours), Charleston (2 1/2 hours), Atlanta (5 hours).
Q~ What’s an “officiant”?
noun – a person who officiates at a religious service or ceremony
officiate – verb – to serve as the priest or minister of (a divine service, religious ceremony, etc.)
Our officiants are non-denominational ministers ordained to perform your ceremony. They will do civil or traditional vows, or your own. And while we like to be accommodating for your special day, we prefer not to do overly religious ceremonies, as we believe all love is sacred.
Q~ Can you get me a photographer? flowers? caterer? reception location?
Absolutely! We are full service, independent wedding planners. Let us know what you need. Our vendors love us and give us good prices – we pass those savings AND great service on to you.
Q ~ Do you have your own ceremony location?
Yes! Anywhere on the beach.
Q ~ Why are there no prices on your flowers page?
There are no prices on our flowers page because we do not know what the flower market can do. We will try to give you the best-to-our-knowledge prices for boutonnieres, corsages, bouquets, etc., but because your bouquet is unique, so might your pricing be. I wrote this originally before gas prices went out of control… boy, was I right! Prices are changing daily due to gas.
Q ~ I’ve got a permit for my wedding – how can I make the other people on the beach leave?
The beach is public, permit or not. If you have a permit, you are just requesting that you can set up on the beach, or that no other wedding or event can set up. Remember, they’re still public beaches, so there will most likely be beach umbrellas or tents or people in the background of your wedding.
Q ~ When is my balance due for my wedding?
We require a $150 deposit to hold your wedding date and our services. This is for all beach weddings, big and small. If there is a vendor who requires a substantial deposit, we will notify you before commiting you to this vendor, and you will be required to pay the deposit.
The balance due for your wedding is due on your wedding day, before we start the ceremony. We do this so we’re not stopping you after you say “I do” and asking for money. We accept check, cash or money orders.
If you were planning on paying with a credit card, this will need to be worked out prior to the ceremony. We only use PayPal for credit cards, so we will most likely need to invoice you. PayPal takes a 3% cut, so you will be charged that 3% based on and in addition to your balance due.
We have a new bounced check service charge – $25 per bounce. Flat fee.
If you forget your checkbook or you can’t do PayPal/credit cards on your wedding day, your entire balance will accrue an 18% finance charge per day.
Q ~ Who do you recommend?
We’re happy to give you some names and numbers in some cases, but some of our vendors are our trade secrets, too! If we gave you the name of our baker, for instance, it wouldn’t be our secret anymore and we’d all have to pay the price. Our suppliers give us preferential treatment and prices, so let us get those great deals for you!
Q ~ Can I choose a male or female officiant to perform my wedding?
In most cases, absolutely. If your wedding needs to be at a specific time and we already have a wedding booked, you may have to be flexible. Stephen performs most of our weddings, so he’s our popular choice. But Jennifer performs some too, and we do have a few professional backups if needed. We can also get you a Christian minister in Savannah or on Tybee, for an additional charge ($250+).
Q ~ Can I pick my choice of photographer from your Beach Wedding Package Digital Photo?
In a simple word – maybe. Our photographers are all wonderful, they all have unique but similar styles and have each done hundreds of weddings with us. However, if there seems to be one of our photographers that you think you might ‘click’ with better, let us know and we’ll do what we can to accommodate – but as they are professionals, they may already be booked somewhere else.
Q ~ What do I need to know about having a beach wedding?
First, you must be realistic. It’s your day, but Mother Nature’s providing the scenery. There is wind on the beach, sand, water, bugs and sometimes clouds and rain. If you have high heel shoes they will sink into the sand. If you go barefoot you might step on sand burrs or a spiky shell. If you’re wearing a veil it might get blown in the wind. There will be people on the beach who are curious about you – you will have extra people watching you. And always have a backup plan if it rains ~ we want you to get married where you will be happy getting married!
Q ~ What does your “coordinating flat fee” include?
It is a FLAT FEE for my coordinating services. It is for my fee for helping you make sure your wedding runs smoothly and offering up my vendors and contacts and making sure they all show up. It is for my hours of answering your emails and calling vendors and leaving messages and making sure people show up on time for your event. It is for being at your ceremony and possibly reception to make sure you walk down the aisle correctly, guests are in place and your ceremony goes off as planned. It is for making sure your bouquet toss happens, your first dance is on time. If you want anything extra– rentals, chairs, permits, etc., they will cost you extra. My coordinating fee is not a clean up or decorating fee. The individual services you choose will have individual prices.
Tybee Island Wedding now charges $50 for every 15 minutes of clean up time on the beach or after your reception. Please make sure you do not litter our beaches or do not have a backup plan for having your reception area cleaned to specification. KEEP TYBEE TIDY!
Q ~ Where can I get my hair /nails/spray tan done on Tybee?
We have vendors we can recommend ~ we’ll give you names and numbers, and you can call them yourself. Don’t forget to mention Tybee Island Wedding sent you!
Q ~ Why do you have a post office box instead of a physical address?
We live on Tybee Island, which is a very small community. Most of the homes on Tybee do not receive house USPS delivery. We also think post office boxes are great because we have the peace of mind that if we don’t check our mail for a day or two, your letters, deposits, correspondence are still going to be there. We don’t have to worry if it’s at the post office!
Q ~ Can I set up a meeting to meet with you? Is there a charge?
Absolutely. We are a home-based business, so we are happy to welcome you to our home for a meeting. We’ll talk about your wedding day, some details, and give you places to look around the island. We do not charge for an initial meeting to get to know each other. During the busy seasons (April thru October) we usually cannot meet on Saturdays, as they are our busy wedding days. We ask that you please be ON TIME for your meeting, as we are busy people, too.
Q ~ I’ve given you my deposit and had my initial meeting. Can we meet again?
Yes, we can meet again. If you feel you need to go over your wedding services again, we are happy to meet on a convenient day for both of us (usually not a Saturday). There is a $75/hour charge for any meetings after your first meeting, one hour minimum.
Other things to think about for your wedding day:
DON’T BE LATE !!!
It’s your wedding day, true. But you must realize that for the people you have hired (officiants, photographers, coordinators, caterers, musicians, people to setup/breakdown, venues) this is their job they were hired to do at a specific time. They have planned *their* day around *your* day, sometimes for months and months. If you are late, and your vendors are on time, they will still be paid from the time scheduled – so you will lose music time, photo time, food time, and your ceremony or reception will feel rushed. It is good to talk to your guests, especially the family members or friends who are ‘notoriously late’. It’s your day ~ you want everyone there for your ceremony. Make sure you and everyone involved know where they are supposed to be.
**There is only one sunrise/ sunset a day, so if you’re late for a sunrise /sunset wedding, you’re cutting yourself short on photo and light opportunities.
For smaller weddings, we request that we meet 15 in advance with you to take care of the balance due and sign your marriage license. It is important that you be on time for these, too, because we may have another small wedding scheduled at an appropriate time after yours. If you’re late, you’re making us late, too.
You are responsible for getting your guests to the wedding on time, too. If we have a busy day, and your friend/aunt/cousin/sister is running late, they may just have to miss the ceremony. We can only hold the time for so long and we can’t hold the sun setting!
BE CLEAR ABOUT YOUR WEDDING DAY
Jennifer answers most of the emails and is very good about getting back to you in a quick, friendly, personal manner. However, unless she is hired to be your coordinator for the day, she will not be at your wedding to help you walk down the aisle, etc. If she is not hired as your coordinator, but you have some vendors thru her, she will not be there, so you need to be clear what you want your vendors to do so there will be no confusion (i.e. clean up, going to different locations, services provided, etc.).
Let your planner know what you expect from your vendors. Do you want the caterers to stay and clean up or are you and your guests doing that -at most venues, you have to be out at a certain time and you will need to make sure you have someone to get your decoration items, your left-overs, linens, etc. Some venues expect that the room will be put back as you found it – you will need to make sure you have someone there to do this (cleaning, putting tables/chairs back). THIS IS NOT THE WEDDING COORDINATOR’S JOB, unless of course you’re paying for them to clean.
Do you have a list of photos you want taken? Ask a family member or friend to help the photographer call names and ‘herd’ people into the right direction ~ in most cases (esp. with our packages) the photographer does not know who “Uncle Bob” is or “Aunt Sally”. It will be the little things that make your day run smoother.
If you are hiring your own vendors, but Jennifer is coordinating, please be clear with everyone what you expect. Jennifer is the ‘go to’ person at a wedding/reception, so if you are not clear with your caterers what time to start or their duties when they’re done, (for example), Jennifer will be asked, and she will have to ask you. It looks more professional and you will not be disturbed if you’re clear up front what you want everyone to do (they will also base their pricing on this – you don’t want to be charged extra afterwards for a cleanup the caterer wasn’t prepared for, etc.).
THE LEAST EXPENSIVE ITEM OF THE DAY
Your ceremony may be conducted in a half hour or so. However, the time most Officiants spend on preparing, meeting, coordinating, traveling and responding to e-mails and phone calls far exceeds what your family and guests see on your day! In most cases the Officiant fee is the least expensive item of all your wedding expenditures. Yet, your Officiant and your ceremony are the two key components in your entire day!
From Frugal Bride.com
Tybee Island Wedding - Gratuity Guidelines;
WHO DO I TIP ON MY WEDDING DAY?
So your having a wedding and you have a lot of people involved from caterers to the planner but you do not know who to tip or how much. Well below I have a list of some proper guidelines to give thanks to the people who made your dream come true.
Officiants - 10-20% is the standard
Clergy - You should offer a donation to the church of $50.00 to $75.00
Photographer and Videographers - 15% to 20% if you feel they have done an outstanding job but is not required.
Waiters and waitresses - 15% to 20% is usually included in the contract. Although and extra 2% or 3% shows them that you really appreciate what they have done to make your day special.
Bartenders - 15% to 20% is an exceptional tip.
Limousine Drivers/horse carriage, etc. - 15% to 20% is usually included in the contract but if you feel they have done an outstanding job than a little extra would be nice.
DJ’s - Tips for the DJ is not usually required but tip at your discretion.
Bands - $20.00 per member of the band is an exceptional tip but usually is not required.
Florists - 15% to 20% is a token of gratitude but is not required
Bakers -15% to 20%
Door greeters/Parking Attendants - $2.00 to $3.00
Ceremony Staff - $25.00 to $50.00 to the piano player or organist
Wedding Planners / Coordinators – If you feel they have done an exceptional job 15% to 20% is standard.
Caterer /Executive chef - The tip is usually included in the contract you signed although if you feel they have done an outstanding job then an extra 2% is exceptional.
Most of all remember all of these people made your wedding day possible so and kind gesture would be appreciated.
Tybee Island Wedding ~ Our name. Our business. Your wedding.
All photos are from weddings and services provided by Tybee Island Wedding, Inc. ©