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FAQs

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

We know planning a wedding can be a little overwhelming.
Two Hearts Better Together Weddings hopes that we have laid out the website so that this process is simple and understandable. We hope this page will help in answering many of the questions that you have, and help to make the planning process a breeze!

Following are many of the Frequently Asked Questions that we receive…

We are more than just weddings…we perform many types of ceremonies!  In addition to Weddings, we also perform Vow Renewals for our couples already hitched and who want to reconfirm their love and commitment all over again. And Commitment Ceremonies for those not ready for the whole signed-sealed-delivered. Thinking about a last-minute elopement or engagement ceremony…we do those, too! We are your premier destination beach, lake and garden event specialists. Please visit our Ceremonies page for more information about the different types of special occasions that we offer.

Yes, absolutely. Love is love, and we support everyone who chooses to marry.

On the day of your ceremony, we will have all the decorations prepared and ready for you thirty (30) minutes prior to the ceremony time. Our wedding coordinator will meet the groom/significant other thirty (30) minutes prior to the start of the ceremony and will, at that time, give him/her easy-to-follow instructions on where to be and what to say. Our wedding coordinator will then meet the bride/significant other fifteen (15) minutes prior to the start of the ceremony to give instructions to him/her as well.

Prior to your day, we will work with you to make all the decisions for your special day. Once the day arrives, all you have to do is show up!

Based in Orlando, FL, we service all of the beaches on the Northeast and Central Atlantic Ocean in Florida, including Daytona and Cocoa Beach, as well as the Central Gulf area around Clearwater, Tampa and St Pete (St. Petersburg).

Interested in lake, park or garden events? We are available in the entire Central Florida area, including Orlando. If you have questions about whether we service the area you want, just give us a call!  We can do your ceremony anywhere! OK, almost anywhere…we accept the challenge.

We are a member of some amazing wedding networks, servicing all of Florida from Miami to Jekyll Island, GA, from Daytona Beach to Clearwater and down to Siesta Key. If we cannot perform your ceremony, we know a company who can.

a member of Tide the Knot Events (tidetheknot.com), featuring
BETTERTOGETHERWEDDINGS.COM, TWO HEARTS EVENTS
and TWO HEARTS CATERING

Yes, we do our ceremonies every day, and, unlike other wedding companies, we do not charge extra for weekday or Sunday ceremonies – early or late events – and we do not restrict our smaller, more intimate ceremony packages to any specific days and times. We will plan your wedding – any size, any style – on any day, 365 days a year.

If you think the winter is too cold for your event, you are mistaken. The weather has been gorgeous for the past few years – our New Years Eve weddings were done in PERFECT spring-like temperatures. It’s 75 degrees right now as I’m writing this (February, 2013).

Things to keep in mind when choosing a time –

May through September gets hot around noon – we recommend evening weddings due to cooler temperatures and better lighting for photographs. Contact us and we can provide you with the sunset time for your chosen ceremony date.

During the winter months, late afternoon and evenings are ideal.

It’s best to reserve your date and time as soon as you have decided on it, for our calendar books up quickly and we have limitations on how many simultaneous weddings we can handle.

If you choose a Friday or Saturday sunset, we suggest putting a deposit down as soon as you have decided (to hold the date.) These days are prime ceremony choices and book fast!

We love spontaneity – so if you’re looking to elope to our Florida beaches or lakes to escape the pressures of planning a wedding or family irritants, come on down and we will fit you into our calendar! Last minute planning is not a problem!

RESERVE YOUR DATE NOW——–>

Yes, but our office hours our limited due to the busy nature of our business. As such, we like to meet you at one of our beach or lake events, so that we not only can discuss your upcoming event, but also so you can see a ceremony in progress to get a visual of how the ceremony is conducted. If we don’t have an event taking place around the time you want to meet, we can make other arrangements.

You can have as many guests as you would like! In some rare circumstances, large numbers (100 and over) may require a permit at the beach location that you choose.
Also, our packages do not have guest count restrictions. If a package has a certain amount of chairs, you can always add additional chairs to accommodate all of your guests. But because, for instance, a package only has ten chairs, it doesn’t mean that the limit for that package is ten guests. For our “Just Say I Do” package, the only restriction regarding guests is photography…it is our elopement package, so photography is restricted to the couple and the children only.

What is unique about Two Hearts Better Together Weddings is that we have developed a step-by-step planning visual to guide your through the booking process.

Check out our Planning 1-2-3 page on our website.

You can book your event at any time via our reservation form located on the website as well. All is needed is a date and time and small deposit to reserve your event on our calendar.

RESERVE YOUR DATE NOW——–>

After you submit your form, you can choose to pay your deposit immediately by credit card on our website or mail in your deposit check or money order. Please be aware that we cannot hold your date until your deposit is received, so we recommend putting the deposit on your credit or debit card immediately upon submitting your reservation form. The information in our FAQs and Step-by-Step Planning pages is comprehensive to give you all the info you will need leading up to and on your very special day…if there is a topic that is not covered, please ask!

Yes, but you have up to a certain time to do so. Following are deadline dates for changes to your event:

  • Package Setup Changes – no later than thirty (30) days prior to your ceremony date
  • Floral – no later than fourteen (14) days prior to your ceremony date
  • Music – no later than fourteen (14) days prior to your ceremony date
  • Location – no later than forty-five (45) days prior to your ceremony date. Please note that changing your location may have an effect on your permit, if applicable.  If you change locations, permit fees may not be refunded, depending on the local municipality and their deadlines for refunds.

You may call or e-mail as much as you’d like and ask as many questions as you’d like! Our offices are open from 9-5pm, every day of the week, but we always try to answer emails and calls throughout the evening as well. We understand that most of the wedding planning is done in the evening when both are home after work, and we know how frustrating it is when planning is interrupted because you need an answer to a questions. Call us…don’t wait til the next morning. Just don’t call after 10pm, or during Dancing with the Stars!

Unfortunately, we cannot allow any decorations other than ours to be used due to liability insurance restrictions. This insurance is not valid on other decorations brought to the wedding. This applies to structures only…you may, of course, bring your own wedding bouquets, wedding supplies (such as ring bearer chests or flower girl baskets.)

Also, we are often asked if we can set up “third party” supplies that are brought to our weddings, such as chairs or tents. Two Hearts Better Together Weddings cannot handle any decorations or supplies that are not our own. There are no exceptions.

Remember – do not bring anything to beach ceremonies that is not biodegradable, such as silk rose petals. Very important!

For lake and park weddings, anything you bring must be removed after the ceremony.

If we are contracted to do just the Officiating and/or photography (no package is selected) and you provide your own decorations, you must comply with the same rules and regulations for the beach or we cannot provide our services.

Either way…it  is up to you! For our ceremonies, we can go to County/State Parks, hotels, and any other open to the public area. For condos, beach houses and private housing communities, we must have written permission from the owner or manager to provide our services in these locations.

We have many spots that we just love…that are perfect for our events. Unless you have a special spot you absolutely want for your ceremony, let us choose for you! Or you can visit our Locations page for more information.

Some beaches require a permit fee…these fees are explained on our Permits Page on our website and are not included as part of our packages. (Our Permits Page is currently under construction – we will discuss permit fees, if any, once you book your ceremony.) We can assist you, but permits must be obtained by the couple directly. This prevents wedding planners from overcharging couples for licenses.

Most lakes and parks are free to the public, but some require a booking fee, as you would pay at any venue. Those costs will be discussed with you and you can direct us on how to proceed.

Please remember that in urban areas, parking availability may be a challenge, and may have a cost. Let us help you choose the perfect lake, park or garden that will best suit your parking needs.  

Yes, as long as you obtain permission from the hotel/condo/establishment. Be sure to ask if there is an additional fee for the use of the outside area for the event. The couple is responsible for any rental or use fees that may be charged.

Rehearsals are included in our Perfect Day package only. If you would like a rehearsal scheduled, it will be an additional $200. Rehearsals must be scheduled no later than two (2) hours prior to sunset. Please note that most smaller ceremony events with limited bridal party might not require a rehearsal…if you are unsure, please let us know and we can help with the decision. Rehearsals are usually held the evening before your ceremony date at the location of your ceremony.

This is an extremely important question, so please read this section carefully. It is the responsibility of the Couple to have a “back-up” location in case of inclement weather. In the spring and summer, many times there are breaks in the weather where we are able to work around a rainstorm. We are very flexible and will check the radar and weather apps constantly on your event day.

But if we cannot avoid bad weather and must move the event indoors or under shelter, we ask that you have an idea of where you would like to move the event. We, of course, can offer suggestions, but please have a backup plan built in to your planning of your event, and not wait until the day of to make arrangements.

You may want to consider WEDDING INSURANCE.

Things to consider:

  • The majority of Hotels/Condos generally do not have any type of outside shelter.
  • If you are having a reception – it may be moved to that location, but please inquire with your reception venue.
  • Consider renting a tent or other temporary structure – we will be glad to work with you to find a vendor in the area your event will be held.
  • Ask about locations that have a covered area nearby of your event (covered areas may or may not have a rental cost)
  • On some rare occasions, we may be able to move it to the next day, depending on many factors, including availability of staff. This is at the sole discretion of Better Together Weddings and is not a guarantee. This is only available to those with minimal decorations and setup.

Some of our setups may not be able to be used in an indoor location, but we will do our best to decorate your chosen backup location. For those setups that cannot be used indoors, we have designed a special indoor inclement weather setup to use in its place. It’s a bit simpler, but festive! We are not responsible for the weather.

We wrote all about what to do if it rains in our blog – read all about it here:

bettertogetherweddings.com/rain-on-your-wedding-day/

Yes. All beaches in the State of Florida are public beaches, and the public areas at the lakes and parks are open to everyone as well. We cannot “rope off” any part of the ceremony location. There are obviously certain times of the year when the beaches have increased traffic, and certain times of the day when traffic is the heaviest. We always recommend for beach ceremonies to start at sunset, for the beaches have cleared out and the lighting is optimal for photography.

Even when there are people at your ceremony location, they are usually respectful and watch from a distance. We are very conscious of where we set up your ceremony decorations so that the photography is optimal.

All of our Officiants are either Florida Notaries or Ordained Reverends, and we have male and female Officiants. We can obtain a minister, if desired. Please let us know if you have a preference and we will accommodate.

 Our professional Officiant, along with help from our photographer, will coordinate all aspects on your special day. The Officiant will ensure that everyone is in place and will give direction on how the process will work. We will be in communication with you throughout the entire day. Every event has a manager that has years of experience with putting on these events…he/she will be at your service for any issues that may arise or questions you may have.

All of the Officiants for Two Hearts Better Together Weddings wear appropriate attire for the event being held. For beach weddings, our male Officiants are in fitted white long sleeve shirts and linen pants. Our female Officiants wear dresses. For lake and park weddings, we aim for a more professional look – slacks, long sleeve shirt and tie.

Please keep in mind that our Officiants must wear clothes that are comfortable for the heat.  For this reason, we cannot take requests for our Officiants to be in suits at the beach or other outfits that would be too hot.

Certainly, as long as he/she is Ordained or a Notary for the State of Florida. We will deduct $100.00 from the Package you choose. Your chosen Officiant is responsible for creating and delivering the ceremony, working with you to create your vows and personalized ceremonial rituals, and signing and filing your marriage license after the ceremony. We will, however, allow him/her to utilize the sand ceremony keepsake and blessing stones to incorporate into his/her ceremony.

Yes, we want that!  Vows are forever…they are the pledges, the framework of your lives together and the understandings and unwritten expectations you have for each other for a long, fruitful and joyous life together. Your vows should be personal to you and we encourage you to write your own. But we understand that not all of us are creative or aim for the more traditional of vows, so we offer various ring and wedding vows, and vow renewal suggestions to you. These suggestions will be included in your wedding information that we send to you once you have reserved a date and time. Vows are repeated after the Officiant when directed to do so.

 

When couples write their own vows, we suggest choosing the “Message in a Bottle Vows.” Available as one of our Special Touches, Message in a Bottle Vows are printed on special paper and placed at your feet in our decorative bottle as if they were washed ashore from the sea. When directed, each person removes their vows from the bottle and reads them to each other. It’s romantic, special and adds a flavor to the ceremony that both will remember forever. And you take the bottles with you for a keepsake of your very special day!

Yes, absolutely!  Once again, we encourage you to make your ceremony your own. If you would like to include your children in the ceremony, we have suggestions for family vows you can use. We recommend including the Special Touch Sand Ceremony Table in your ceremony when you have children or family members as part of the ceremony so that they might be included in the sand ritual as well.

Yes, you can have a friend and/or family member read poems, sing, or lead in prayers. We are open to any special additions to our signature Two Hearts Better Together Weddings Ceremony that you want to incorporate to make your ceremony extra special for you and your guests.

All of our packages include ceremony and after-ceremony photos by our expert photographers. We have many couples ask if they are “professional.” No, they are “free-lance” and shoot exclusively for Two Hearts Better Together Weddings. They use “professional grade” digital cameras – we do extensive research to choose the best cameras for our company that will take beautiful photos of your special day.

Although we take hundreds of photographs at any given event, we reserve the right to choose the best photographs from the collection. As with professional photographers, we do not guarantee that you will receive every picture that we take. We don’t want to give out less-than-perfect, quality photos – we want you to have photos that are exceptional.

As an example, we encourage you to check out this article…for clarity:

Why photographers do not release all of their photos from a given event!

If there are specific poses that you will want, please let us know prior to your wedding day, or just notify the photographer the day of your ceremony. Knowing ahead of time, though, what photos are important to you will help us make sure that you receive the ones you want.

Photos are generally mailed within three to four weeks after your ceremony, a week or so longer if you include reception photography. If you need your photographs quickly for reasons such as receptions back home or the like, we can work out something with you.[/raw]

Yes. You can hire a professional photographer.

If you hire an outside photographer: We will deduct our fee from the cost of the package. In order for this fee to be removed, we must know at least fourteen (14) days prior to your wedding that you are having your own photographer. If you hire someone else as your main photographer and our photographer shows up on the day of your wedding, there will be no money refunded and no photos taken by our photographer. Also note that if you hire another photographer, we still retain the right to take photos for our purposes. Make sure the photographer you hire is aware of this.

If you hire both us and a professional photographer: Your hired photographer will be running the show! We will act as a secondary photographer and relinquish creative control to your hired photographer. We will take shots around your hired photographer so not to interfere in his/her work. Please note that if we are shooting on public property, we cannot by law request people not at your event to move in order to take photographs. Most are very respectful, and we’ve never had an issue. Our photographers are professionals and can utilize all angles to achieve superior photographs.

Music is included with some of our packages, but can be added to those that it is not included. Music is the perfect special touch to any ceremony and can be found on our Special Touches page. For recorded music, we will play mood music prior to the ceremony – you will choose the genre and we have playsets available in each genre. For the processional and recessional – you will be able to choose the songs, or we can you use our traditional songs. With recorded music, we provide a high-quality amplifier, music on ipod and a staff member of Two Hearts Better Together Weddings to run the music.

If interested, we recommend “live” music from a guitarist, steel drummer, or ukulele player. These can also be found on our Special Touches page on our website. A steel drum player is always a hit!

Unfortunately, we do not allow you to bring your own CD player/music system.

Yes, we do have several seating options available – please refer to our Special Touches page on our website for options and pricing. Seating is included with some packages, but can be added on as a Special Touch to those that do not include seating. We can provide up to twenty (20) chairs maximum.

Seating for guests is a great Special Touch for many reasons – chairs define your wedding space on a public beach or public venue, provide a clear path for the bride and guests to find their seats and also provide comfort for your guests. Chairs also keep guests still during the ceremony to allow the photographers to capture unobstructed views of the couple. While the actual ceremony may be short, expect to be on the beach an hour to an hour and a half. So while the post-ceremony photography takes place, guests can enjoy the beach comfortably from their chair.

With all seating selections booked through us, we take care of the delivery, set up and tear down. If we are unable to provide seating for your event, we can offer alternate chair rental companies.

Yes! Please contact us to discuss.

Yes, we can offer these services – check out our Special Touches page for these perfect additions!

champagne bottle cover black champagne bottle cover white

Included items in Cake cutting –—_____———___________

cake, server, plates, forks and napkins.

Included items in Champagne Toast –

Bottle of Champagne, two champagne glasses (glasses can be personalized). We must be conscious that some locations do not allow alcohol or have special alcohol rules and regulations, and some do not allow glass containers or bottles.

If you would like to bring your own cake, you will also need to bring all of your own supplies, such as a cake table, cake riser, cake cutter, napkins, silverware, etc. You will be responsible for this set up.

Note: we discourage cake on the actual beach because it is vulnerable to sand being blown into it.

We have a whole page on our website devoted to marriage licenses…visit this page now

Marriage Licenses

Payments can be made up to fourteen (14) days prior to your event.

Full balance is due on all events no later than thirty (30) days prior to the event.

Please visit our payments page for payment information.

We understand that situations come up and events have to be postponed. We are very flexible in rescheduling and will work with you to pick another date and time that will work for you. If you need to reschedule, please call us for date and time availability.

Please note the following policy on payments and deposits in regards to postponements:

  • Any deposits/payments will be applied to your new date.
  • Deposits are non-transferable
  • Deposits/payments are applicable for up to one (1) year from the originally-scheduled ceremony date. After that, a new deposit and service agreement are needed.
  • Postponements will be honored if notice is given fourteen (14) or more days prior to your ceremony date – within fourteen (14) days of the date of your event, we will be not able to postpone your event and no refunds will be issued. Please remember that your marriage license is only valid for a certain amount of time after you obtain it.  Please keep this in mind when deciding on a new date if you postpone.

Please visit our payments page for details on our Refund and Privacy Policies.

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