Tips from a Wedding Planner - Washington DC Wedding Guide

January 25, 2018

Washington, DC is a popular destination for weddings, and rightfully so, it is a dream to get married in the nation's capital! You can get married in all seasons; the venues are unique, the marriage license is a breeze to obtain, to name a few perks. Keep reading below for our Washing, DC wedding planning guide, and tips! 


First-time reader? Welcome! We are a wedding planning company and specialize in Day of Wedding Planning and Month of Wedding Coordination in the Maryland, Virginia, and DC areas.  O'Neil's blog is the best place to become and stay educated about the wedding planning process. We post about wedding budget percentages, addressing wedding invitations, room blocks for weddings (how we can help for free), and your day of wedding timeline. We offer many free downloads such as the ultimate wedding timeline template, wedding invitation timeline, and wedding budgeting. We teach you how to plan your wedding as we specialize as your day of wedding planner. Learn more about us here.

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Your Guest Count

One big item to note, if you are getting married in DC, your RSVP number may be a little higher than you were initially expecting. That is because DC is a relatively easy to get to from most places. Guest will also want to take advance of your Washington DC wedding location and make a trip to it. It might be the family vacation that year.

Make it legal!

Make sure to read up on how to get your marriage license before it gets too close to your wedding. The great news is DC is a pretty easy city to get your license, in fact, neither one of you even have to be present! One of you can get it, or you can both send someone in your place (thanks, mom!). Either way, here is what you will need -

  • A completed license application
  • $45 for the license fee and certificate copy
  • Show valid photo ID/proof of age (e.g., driver's license or passport) for each member of the couple
  • Home and work phone numbers for both members of the couple
  • Full name, address, social security number and date of birth for each member of the couple
  • Information about any previous marriages, including city, state, and county of wedding and reason for the marriage's end
  • The full name (first and last) of the wedding officiant

And the best news, you can get it the same day, AND it will not expire. So you can check a huge item off your to-do list pretty early in the game.

Click to learn more about the Washington DC Marriage License Requirements.


DC Wedding Venue Selection

Washington DC wedding venue selection is unlike any other! Once you have an idea of your budget and an idea of your guest count, have fun with finding a venue. There is everything from hotels, museums, parks, indoor, outdoor, name it! Think outside the box, what about a wedding at the Washington National's stadium (check out inspiration here). 

Make the Destination your Theme

If you are having a Washington DC wedding, have to go with it! Make it your theme. Start your theme with your invitations. Here are some great inspiration pieces by Minted - (also, message us for a minted promo code and learn more here!)

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Entertaining Guest

Since DC is such a great destination and city, take advance of all the city has to offer your guest! Dedicate a page of your wedding website with DC information such as links to the metro system, helpful maps. Even take it a step forward and make a list of places that are right around the hotel that you would suggest your guest check out. Remember, they don't know the city as well as you do. Getting breakfast in the morning could be a chore, so make sure to suggest a few awesome places you have grown to love throughout the years. If you have a welcome bag for your hotel guest, print off all of the information from the website and stick it in their bag that way it's right there for your guest when they arrive. Also, go local when you create your welcome bag. There are so many great local shops that would be delighted to help you create your welcome bag with everything DC!


DC Wedding Dates to Avoid

DC being the nation's capital, there are a few dates that would be best to avoid when planning your Washington DC wedding. While you are certainly allowed to get married around these times, the cost is going to be much higher; the hotel availability will be lower (and more expensive), there could be venue and road closings to deal with as name a few potential issues!

  • Presidential Inauguration ceremony (every four years)
  • National Cherry Blossom Festival (usually end of March into early April)
  • Independence Day (July 4)
  • Navy-Air Force Half Marathon (September)
  • Marine Corps Marathon (October)

DC also has all four seasons; it is very cold (and can be snowy) in the winter and very hot and humid in the summer. And everything in between is a coin toss!

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Here are some other blog post you will find helpful!

Engagement Party Etiquette

Wedding Day Help - Questions to Ask your Wedding Caterer


DIY Wedding Planning - How much Booze should you buy?


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