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I do, I do, do I?

I do, I do, do I?

Research by Mercure Hotels reveals what couples discuss when it comes to decision-making while planning a wedding...

Choosing the date, finding a suitable venue and finalising the guest list are the top priorities when planning a wedding, research has found.

According to a survey of 2,000 married Brits, who gets an invitation to the wedding is the most hotly-contested 'Big Day Battleground', followed by choosing the ideal venue to host it at. Recruiting the perfect caterer and wedding photographer also proved problematic for Brits looking to tie the knot. And 52% found the process of planning their wedding stressful.

What's more, 1 in 4 married Brits confessed they made some decisions about their wedding day just to keep their parents or in-laws happy, and 25% were careful to ensure older family traditions were observed. Charlotte Hill, Director of Romance at Mercure Hotels, which commissioned the study, said:
“Planning a wedding is a huge challenge, and expectations for the big day are understandably sky-high, so it's no surprise Brits want to put the work in to make sure everything goes smoothly. However, tackling some of the big choices in plenty of time, such as finding the perfect venue, dress and caterer, can take care of the lion's share of the stress of planning a wedding.”

83% of engaged Brits are heavily involved in the planning of their own wedding, while the remaining 17% happily take a backseat and let someone else do the work. Only 9% decided to hire a wedding planner to help the process run more smoothly. Well-researched wedding planners manage to get their venue shortlist down to just two, and will make a final decision after visiting the locations. Brides are most likely to focus on issues affecting the dress, the seating arrangements and the decorations, while grooms tackle the venue, the catering and booking the honeymoon.

Brides will try on four different wedding dresses on average before deciding on the perfect look for their big day. 1 in 6 start planning their wedding within a week of the proposal, and 1 in 4 wait a month for the dust to settle on the engagement before they get to work. 86% of married Brits thought their wedding day went as they planned it, though they also think proceedings could have benefited from another five months in the planning stages.

And 3 in 10 would organise their wedding plans differently if they had the chance to do it all over again. 27% said making decisions about their wedding led to arguments and disagreements with people trying to help. Of these, 46% fell out with their partner over an element of the wedding, and one in four had some choice words for their mother-in-law. Aside from their other half, mum has the biggest say in decisions to do with the wedding, with 1 in 4 saying theirs played a pivotal role in the planning stages.

Three in 10 Brits, surveyed by OnePoll.com, chose a significant date in the calendar to propose to their other half. Of those who picked a special day to propose on, their partner's birthday was the most popular choice, followed by Valentine's Day and New Year's Eve.

When looking for inspiration for things to do for their own weddings, 1 in 5 will think back to the weddings of their friends to see what they can copy or top at their own, while 1 in 7 will scour social media.

To help newly engaged couples get underway with planning their big day, in the lead-up to Valentine's Day this year, Mercure Hotels is giving three couples the chance to win an overnight stay in the UK and a special session with a dedicated wedding planner.

To enter, couples simply need to visit Mercure Hotels on Facebook. Hill added: “The pressure to 'get it right' from family and friends is huge and every little decision is overthought to please as many people as possible. Whilst it might be 'your' wedding, it can sometimes feel like the world and his wife's wedding too! At Mercure we have designed wedding packages to help alleviate the harder decisions and make the first steps on an engagement journey easy and as straightforward as possible to make a couple's wedding day vision a reality without any joy being lost along the way.”

FIVE WEDDING PLANNING TIPS FROM CHARLOTTE HILL, DIRECTOR OF ROMANCE AT MERCURE:

  1. Before looking at venues, get a rough number of guests and have a budget in mind. Your wedding venue and catering should equal half of your total budget, but make sure your also allocating some pennies to miscellaneous costs.
  2. Catering will be one of the most expensive elements to your day, if you want to cut costs…trim the guest list.
  3. Invest in your photography, wedding rings and a videographer. These are the only three things that will live beyond the big day and be in your family for generations. You'll witness parts of your wedding that you didn't see at the time, and rings will become family heirlooms.
  4. Don't underestimate the price of stamps when it comes to budgeting. Deciding on the guest-list is one thing, but you also want to invite them and you'll be surprised by how much this can mount up to.
  5. Ceremony music is always overlooked, but is a beautiful way to set the tone of the day from the get-go. If your budget allows, try to get live music to give you and your guests goosebumps

TOP 10 WEDDING PLANNING ARGUMENTS:
  • Guest list
  • The venue
  • The catering
  • Seating arrangements
  • The photographer
  • Decorations
  • The dress
  • Hair and makeup
  • Invitation design
  • Flowers

TOP 10 WEDDING PLANNING PRIORITIES:
  • The date
  • The venue
  • Guest list
  • The dress
  • The catering
  • Honeymoon
  • Wedding rings
  • Hair and makeup
  • Planning the stag/hen do
  • Invitation design

Check out www.mercure.accorhotels.com