Ensuring dress gets there safely is crucial: Experts

Plane tickets, check. Bridal party, check. Wedding dress, uh-oh ...

While a destination wedding is a dream come true for many brides, making sure your dress gets there can be an absolute nightmare. Have no fear, ladies, there are ways, some of them underhanded, to ensure your gown is with you when the big occasion arrives.

“The wedding dress, apart from the bride, of course, is the main focal point of any wedding,” says Danny Almon of AlmonTravel, a Halifax-based destination-wedding planner. “Brides shouldn’t take chances transporting it.”


And they usually don’t. Toronto-based wedding dress designer Lana Lowon of Lowon Pope says that to be absolutely sure, brides-to-be usually pack up their dress into their carry-on luggage, which they’ll take with them on the plane. Many bridal dressmakers, including Lowon, offer services where they will pack up your dress in static-resistant plastic for easier handling. There are a couple things to note, however: Your dress will be X-rayed and possibly hand-examined by customs officials before you leave Canada.

Is it a hassle that can turn even the quietest woman into a boisterous bridezilla? You bet, but it’s still a better alternative than checking your dress, the experts say.

“I would be wary about checking a wedding dress,” says Almon. “There’s a lot of rough-and-tumble that goes on in transporting checked luggage.”

Adds Lowon: “I always tell my brides to never put it in a checked suitcase. It will get squished. And if it gets lost, it’s gone.”

However, Air Canada spokesperson Peter Fitzpatrick says given the tight confines of an aircraft, they can’t make any special provisions for wedding dresses. Almon says some airlines will have issues with you transporting your dress, but he’s never had a case where one would outright refuse you. Lowon says some airlines will go as far as to reserve your own luggage bay on the plane for your dress, adding that turning on the waterworks will diffuse any resistance airline officials might give you.

“Look like you’ll start to cry if you get a hard time,” Lowon laughs. “They’ll usually accommodate you.”

Fitzpatrick also suggests sending your dress to your desired location via a courier such as FedEx, but Almon advises strongly against that. While he notes its services are dependable, he says brides-to-be should be hesitant because packages can, and do, go missing.

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