Wedding in Kerala – Destination, Basic idea, Cost & Tips

Wedding in Kerala – Destination Weddings

Destination wedding in Kerala – God’s own country is becoming very popular among both Indian and NRI couples. Blessed with beautiful and sandy beaches, enchanting backwaters, mighty mountain ranges and other tropical habitats – Kerala is a natural choice for Destination Wedding.

Wedding in Kerala - Destination
Wedding in Kerala

Couples could choose one destination from several options to celebrate their wedding in Kerala. The best ones are Kovalam for Beach wedding, Alleppey for Backwater wedding and Munnar for Hill wedding. There are beautiful beach resorts, backwater cruises and estate properties to ensure comfort of your guests and cater to your wedding functions. Wedding in Kerala is best enjoyed with the backdrop of nature. Now, If you are already planning to consider this place to host your wedding, here is a basic idea of Destinations and Costs…

Wedding in Kerala – Destination

We have picked 3 popular destinations among the lot for exclusive natural wedding in Kerala.

  • Kovalam: The internationally renowned beachtown has developed itself with exotic star rated beach properties to cater to beautiful beach wedding in Kerala for Indian as well as International couples. Beaches are clean, sandy and well maintained and could compete with the beaches of any international destination.
  • Alleppey: Also known as Alappuzha is best known for houseboat cruises along with rustic kerala backwaters, a network of tranquil canals and lagoons. This destination offers several star rated properties situated on the backwaters lane, which could be the perfect backdrop for your natural wedding in Kerala.
  • Munnar: A hill station, surrounded by rolling hills dotted by tea plantations established in the 19th century by the British Raj elite. Large expanse of plantations, forests, wildlife, waterfall and valleys, Munnar is the most sought after destination for hosting a wedding in Kerala.

Now that we have dotted the importance of the above destinations, you must be excited to host your wedding in Kerala. Yes! You should be. But before you start planning your wedding, budget, logistics etc. Here is a guide which could ease your planning journey…

Cost of Wedding in Kerala

It is important to comprehend the cost at expense for hosting a wedding in Kerala. The cost could be calculated by taking in account the following requirements and services like, Stay, Food, Venue,Décor, Entertainment, Logistics, Photography, Makeup Artiste, Wedding Planner & MSC. Lets evaluate in descending order.

WEDDING PLANNER

Yes! This is the foremost service you should confirm, before you confirm any of the following services. A destination wedding in Kerala could not be organized without the assistance of a wedding planner.
Why? You will only get the answer after you complete reading this article.

STAY & FOOD

Assume that you are group of 70-100 people and looking for a 4*/5* Property with all amenities, beautiful venues and quality food. Now, lets comprehend the property stay and food costs destination wise.

KOVALAM – Beach wedding in Kerala (STAY)
  • •Tariff of a standard room of any 5* property would be INR 10K TO 15K + GST onwards
  • •Tariff of a standard room of any 4* property would be INR 10K TO 12K + GST onwards
  • •Properties below standard these may/may not be suitable to host weddings
Wedding in Kerala - Ramada Resort
Wedding in Kerala – Ramada Resort
ALLEPPEY – Backwater wedding in Kerala (STAY)
  • •Tariff of a standard room of any 5* property would be INR 12K TO 15K + GST onwards
  • •Tariff of a standard room of any 4* property would be INR 10K TO 12K + GST onwards
  • •Properties below standard these may/may not be suitable to host weddings
Wedding in Kerala - Lake palace resort
Wedding in Kerala – Lake palace resort
MUNNAR – Hill wedding in Kerala (STAY)
  • •Tariff of a standard room of any 5* property would be INR 10K TO 15K + GST onwards
  • •Tariff of a standard room of any 4* property would be INR 10K TO 12K + GST onwards
  • •Properties below standard these may/may not be suitable to host weddings
Wedding in Kerala  - Munnar
Wedding in Kerala – Munnar

The above Tariffs are mentioned on the basis of 5*/4* properties like Leela, Ramada, Lake Palace etc.

Tip:1 The cost of stay and hosting a wedding in Kerala is relatively cheaper and that of other beach destinations in India, Goa especially, where prices touch the sky during wedding season. You could enjoy a more beautiful and serene wedding amidst the nature in Kerala.

Tip: 2 You may get a good discount on rooms if you book through charter websites, but then you should also know the same discount isn’t valid for group bookings. The above mentioned tariffs are for wedding season specifically, which is generally observed from October to March every year. Tariffs may also vary depending on month/season/festivals. However you may save some bucks by availing a discount on these tariffs by planning your celebration in the off season. You could avail a discount up to 20% on room tariffs. So, you need to make your decisions vigilantly.

VENUE

Each 5*/4* properties have venues which could cater to your pre wedding and wedding functions. Venues could be anything like AC Banquet, lawn area, swimming pool area or any special area of the property dedicated for wedding functions.

Wedding in Kerala - House boat
Wedding in Kerala – House boat

Unlike properties in Goa, properties in Kerala may not charge you for the venues, if you guarantee the minimum number of rooms for stay. But if there’s a charge, it could be something like below

Here is a basic understanding on venue charges:

  • •5* Property: Venue Charges may vary from INR 50K to 2Lacs + GST Per function (T&C)
  • •4* Property: Venue Charges may vary from INR 50K to 1Lac + GST Per function (T&C)
  • •HouseBoat: Charges may vary per person with or without food
FOOD

Breakfast is included in room tariff in most of the star properties, so you pay for another 2 meals and a snack, i.e. Lunch, Dinner & Hi-Tea respectively. Here is the breakdown on per person basis…

  • •5* Property: Lunch: INR 1200 + GST onwards, Dinner: INR 1500 + GST onwards, Hi-Tea: INR 600 + GST onwards. Wedding Feast: Lunch or Dinner: INR 2500 + GST onwards.
  • •4* Property: Lunch INR 1000 + GST onwards, Dinner: INR 1200 + GST onwards, Hi-Tea: INR 500 + GST onwards. Wedding Feast: Lunch or Dinner: INR 2200 + GST onwards.

The cost mentioned above would be applicable for veg/non-veg meals. The cost per person of wedding feast may depend on the elaborate menu. You may also request DIY snack stalls or BBQ by paying extra charges.
You could calculate the cost of stay & food along with GST in the 5*/4*/3* properties on a per person basis.

DÉCOR

The cost of décor for wedding in Kerala may depend on your demand and availability of resources. For example: If you are looking out to decorate your functions with materials which could be locally sourced from that destination, then the costs are on the standard level. But then if you are looking out for something specific which would have to be imported, then décor costs may increase accordingly. Also costs may somewhat depend on your décor designer or planner (Please, I am not speaking of any flower decorator here), as they are likely to charge more or less depending on their creativity standards.

Wedding in Kerala - Wedding decor
Wedding in Kerala – Wedding decor

However there is a standard cost for standard décor for wedding in Kerala, India. Here is a general observation of décor for functions comprising 100 guests…

  • •Pre Wedding Function: Likely to be Engagement, Sangeet, Mehendi or any similar function: Décor starts from INR 1.5L + GST per function, this cost may include décor of structures, drapes, florals, lights, related props, also furniture to some extent.
  • •Wedding Function: Likely to be the Wedding day function followed by Reception: Décor starts from INR 2.5L + GST per function, this cost may include décor of several structures, drapes, florals, lights, related props, also furniture to some extent.
  • •Theme Party: Pool party, Bollywood sangeet, Masquerade themed reception are a few ideas of theme parties you could arrange to engage your guests, these have particular décor sets which may cost you from INR 2L + GST per theme.

Tip: Choose from natural and locally sourced elements for wedding in Kerala. Locally sourced elements would make the décor come to life.

Tip: If planning a backwater wedding, hire a houseboat for a pre wedding function like Haldi or Mehendi, decorate it with natural flowers and plan local entertainment for your guests.

You could calculate the cost according to the number functions you are likely to host and divide the total cost on per person basis.

ENTERTAINMENT

PRE WEDDING FUNCTION

Sangeet/ Mehendi or any other similar function following could be typical requirements:

  • Kerala Favorite: Most interesting will be hiring a Folk dance troupe very local to Kerala and engage your wedding guests with awe dance performances of Kaliyattom, Kolam Thullal and Thiruvathirakali, popular dance forms of Kerala, These troupes may charge INR 20K + GST onwards.
  • DJ with music console: A standard local DJ charges around INR 30K + GST onwards. However there endless limits if you want o spend, you can hire celebrity DJ who plays for high class parties, night clubs and savvy events at INR 80K+ GST onwards.
  • •Male/Female Anchor: To engage your guests, you have to hire good looking and appealing hosts. So the need of a standard Anchor/Male comes at a cost of INR 10K + GST onwards. However you may hire celebrity Anchor/Male who hosts fashion events, bollywood events at a cost of INR 30K + Taxes onwards. Female/Anchors are expensive you may have to shell out INR 15K + GST onwards for a standard and INR 40K + GST onwards for celebrity anchors. Also, you may note that you may have to bear the expenses of travel/food/stay of these artists, if they are not sourced locally.
  • •Mehendi Artiste: So, this is the most important service for any mehendi function and costs may vary. For bridal henna full hands/legs costs starts from INR 10K + GST onwards, whereas for individual guests cost starts from INR 2K + GST onwards, per guest.
  • •Lady singers with Dholki: A group of 6 ladies may come at a cost of around INR 25K + GST onwards
Wedding in Kerala - Kathakali Dance
Wedding in Kerala – Kathakali Dance

WEDDING FUNCTION

  • Groom Procession in Elephant : Groom entry shall be the highlight of the wedding. Elephants could be easily sourced in Kerala, so a groom procession in elephant with brass band shall take the wedding theme to the level of luxury. This service may cost INR 40K + GST onwards.
  • Bride Entry in decorated boat: If considering a backwater wedding in Kerala, this idea of bride entry shall interest you. The bride sits on a decorated boat which drives through the lake water and reaches the wedding venue. This service may depend on the type of property chosen, also if the property is based at the lake and allows its own boat for this service. Could cost around INR 10K + GST onwards or the service could be availed free of cost.
  • Jaimala: A decorated Stage with confetti showers, 2 flower garlands, along with back ground music may cost around INR 30K + GST. If you wish for some more effects like a hydraulic stage with cold showers, fireworks etc then costs may start from INR 50K + GST onwards.
Wedding in Kerala - Elephants
Wedding in Kerala – Elephants
PHOTOGRAPHY + VIDEOGRAPHY

Certainly! This is one of the major aspects while comprehending the services cost of wedding in Kerala However the cost for this service depends upon the fame & quality of the photographer, but generally it could range from anything in the following:

  • •Candid Photography Stills: INR 25K + GST onwards Per Function
  • Traditional Photography Stills: INR 15K + GST onwards Per Function
  • •Traditional Videography: INR 40K + GST onwards Per Function
  • Cinematography/ Wedding Film: INR 60K + GST onwards Per Function
  • •Pre Wedding shoot: INR 20K + GST onwards for 8hours shoot
  • Pre Wedding Video: INR 40K + GST onwards for teaser & film.

Also, you may note that you may have to bear the expenses of travel/food/stay of these artists, if they are not sourced locally. Guess you would not like to compromise and would need all the above mentioned photography services, so calculate your budget accordingly.

MAKE UP ARTISTE

This is the most important service NOT ONLY for the brides but for the grooms as well.  But then, the charming service which helps you doll up for your bid day comes with a price tag! Now let’s evaluate the cost for this service:

Destination Wedding in India - Cost of Make up services
Destination Wedding in India – Cost of Make up services
  • •Bridal Make up & Hair do: INR 20K + GST onwards for the bride on her wedding day, includes, make up, hair do, draping etc.
  • •Pre Wedding Function Make up for Bride: INR 10K + GST onwards per pre wedding function includes, make up, hair do, draping etc.
  • Groom Make up + Draping: INR 15K + GST onwards for the bride on her wedding day, includes, make up, hair do, draping etc
  • •Pre Wedding Function Make up for Groom: INR 8K + GST onwards per pre wedding function includes, make up, hair do, draping etc.
  • •Make Up/ Touch up, per guest: INR 2K + GST onwards for per pre wedding/ wedding function includes, make up, hair do, draping etc.

Also, you may note that you may have to bear the expenses of travel/food/stay of these artists, if they are not sourced locally.

LOGISTICS

An important aspect which cannot be overlooked while comprehending the cost of wedding in Kerala. Travel to the destination is generally paid by the guests themselves so I would skip this part.Travel within the destination which could be anything like airport/ station transfers, hotel to venue travel or going sightseeing. So the costs would be somewhat around the following:

  • •Luxury Bus, 49 seater: INR 25K + GST onwards for 8hours, cost may not depend on KMs in this case.
  • •AC coaches, 12 seater: INR 10K + GST onwards for 8hours, cost may depend on KMs or Hours, whichever is greater.
  • •AC Car 5-8 seater: INR 3K + GST onwards for 8hours, cost may depend on KMs or Hours, whichever is greater
  • •Vintage Car: INR 10K + GST onwards for 5hours maximum.

Tip: You may note, Kerala fine linked with the major cities of India and Abroad through Airways. Regular flights operate from Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, and Bangalore. Railways and Roadways are very developed and connect nearby cities.

So technically, you pay depending on your schedule and requirement.

MORE SERVICES MORE COSTS

Apart from the essentials, if you wish for some extra services, you would have to set your budget accordingly. You could add any of the following or other services of your choice to your requirement and budget list. Say…

Caricature artists, live bangle makers, fire jugglers, tattoo artists, comedian and the list is endless.

All of the above mentioned services could be hired at definite prices; you could set your budget accordingly.

Isn’t planning everything above and that too in at a right Budget a Hectic Task?

Worry Not! Let me introduce you to your fairy god mother, who will set everything right for your Big Day…

WEDDING PLANNER

Now that you know that without a Wedding Planner, planning a destination wedding is almost impossible, you should also know that Wedding Planning is a Service and your wedding planner with team add up to your wedding budget.

So let’s now comprehend the cost of a wedding planner.

So a wedding planner may charge you any one of the two ways:

  • •Percentage (%) of Wedding Budget: A planner may charge a certain percentage of amount as their fee depending on the size of the wedding budget. Likely to be around 10-25% of the total wedding budget.
  • Fixed Fee: Most common fee structure of startup wedding planning ventures, they charge a fixed fee depending on the services and the responsibilities they undertake to make your Big Day special.

The choice completely depends on you and your capacity of expenditures.

Hope the above information helps to understand the destinations and cost of wedding in Kerala

Thank you for reading  Have you any suggestions, please write to us at diwas.celebrations@gmail.com

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