There comes a time in every man’s life when they realize that (1) all of their friends are getting married and (2) all of their vacation days are spent hopping from ceremony to ceremony.
Welcome to wedding season, a period of time that can last anywhere from one summer to one decade… or indefinitely, depending on how popular you are. It involves lots of travel, lots of champagne toasts and lots of cover bands performing “At Last.”
Packing for wedding season travel can be particularly tricky, but it improves with practice. Here, a handy list of essentials you may not normally think to bring along, from a wedding season vet.
FOR THE LADIES
An extra pair of flats or fancy sandals. Those heels might match your dress perfectly but they probably won’t hold up to an all-night dance party. An extra set of flats or sandals, packed away in your purse, will be invaluable at 1 a.m.
A wrap. A nice, neutral shawl can get a ton of mileage, whether as a cover-up at the ceremony or as a scarf on the plane.
Waterproof mascara. Because love is a beautiful thing.
FOR THE LADS
Cuff links, studs, etc. Those rental tuxes are complicated, man.
Fancy socks. White athletic socks won’t cut it, we’re afraid.
Pocket handkerchief. Especially if you’re single and seated next to Ms. Waterproof Mascara (see above).
Steamer. That dress or suit will probably pick up a few wrinkles in transit, and you’ll want to iron them out before the ceremony.
Travel sewing kit. Missing buttons are the worst.
Cash (in local currency) for tips. Most reception venues will have a valet and coat check, so be prepared.
Print-out of directions to the wedding venue. We’re all familiar with technological travel mishaps – dead battery, forgotten charger, no 3G service. Make sure you at least make it to the wedding by printing out venue directions the old-fashioned way.
Gift card for bride/groom. Even if you ordered something off the registry, it’s always nice to give the bride and groom a nice hand-written note wishing them well.
A stockpile of champagne toast ammunition. Bonus points for a USB stick of embarrassing photo slideshows.
[Flickr image via Ryan Smith]