“Congratulations on your engagement – there are so many exciting times ahead – so, when’s the big day?”

This is one of the most common questions people will ask you after you have announced to the world that you are tying the knot. Once all the excitement has subsided, it’s time to get cracking and plan your big day. So let’s talk about some tips on how to choose your wedding date and time.

You don’t need to be a genius to know that the most popular time to get married is on a Saturday afternoon. March and November in Melbourne are the most popular months. Note to self – these dates book out at least 12-18 months in advance.

No doubt, with time on your side you can spend more time considering venues, locations and suppliers. You will have more choices and have more time to think about what you want and have the opportunity to save more money.

But what if you wish to get married sooner, rather than later? Read on, it’s all good news!! Weekdays, Sundays, lunchtimes, breakfasts, winter, autumn – these are all great times to get married – and you will have the luxury of having lots of choices!!

Marrying on a Friday allows you and your guests to have a super long weekend and why not organise a breakfast catch up on Saturday morning? Marrying on a Sunday gives guests travelling from interstate more time to travel. And also, that extra day will give you breathing space to do those last minute tasks. Don’t rule out a Monday or a mid-week wedding – some of the most intimate and personal wedding ceremonies I have witnessed have been at these times.

Here’s my secret gem dates – the days before a public holiday. Think the Monday before Melbourne Cup Day (or Labour/Show Days in other states), the day before Anzac day, or the day before Good Friday. These dates work perfectly as they are deemed as normal work days (no public holiday rates to pay) and most people would have the day off the next day – rock on! Or if you have lots of guests coming from interstate, consider getting married around the Christmas/New Year period for a double celebration.

So, we’ve talked about the day, but what about the time to get married? You have no argument from me that wedding photos captured at sunset are divine. But, would you consider having your wedding photos taken before your ceremony and get married early evening when the temperature may be a little cooler? The early morning light is pretty special too so how about a breakfast/brunch wedding? A fab couple I married a few years ago held their breakfast wedding on Good Friday complete with a gospel choir singing before the ceremony to set the scene – needless to say it was simply amazing.

Getting married in a particular month anywhere in Australia is no guarantee of avoiding a heatwave, an unforgiving downpour., or high speed winds. Predicting the weather for your wedding day is fraught with danger. You can, however, minimise the extreme weather risks. Don’t like the hot weather? Then perhaps choosing to get married in autumn is a better option. Cool mornings, turning into sunny, clear blue skies, and the amazing coloured leaves can make for a beautiful backdrop for your wedding. Getting married alongside an open fire in the midst of winter is rather romantic and delightful!

So you see there are many different choices and options as to when you can be married. Think outside the square and most of all, whatever and whenever you decide to get married, make sure it suits you and your partner in every way.

In the last two weeks I have unfortunately had to knock back so many couples as I am already booked on their wedding date. If you are getting married in a regional area it may be even harder to find a great celebrant. My advice is as soon as you have booked your venue, you need to book your celebrant.