When considering the perfect elements for your dream wedding day, so much thought is often placed on your gown, the ceremony location and reception (and rightly so!). But one thing that can be overlooked is your grand arrival. For couples choosing a ceremony location where guests cannot see the bride arrive this may not be so important, but for those who are making a special arrival with everyone witnessing the moment you step out of the vehicle, this vehicle becomes a part of the overall feeling of the ceremony.
Not only is a fabulous vintage inspired car a wonderful inclusion in your wedding ceremony, it is also a timeless backdrop for wedding photography after the ceremony. Some of my all time favourite wedding images are those which feature a classic car, whether it be an evening kiss in the headlights or a wave out the back window on the way to the ceremony. It may seem like an indulgent splurge if no one is going to see what you arrive in, but it may very well be the centrepiece of your favourite canvas on your wall for many years to come.
There are countless options when it comes to selecting a vintage vehicle for your wedding day and the best way to whittle down the options is to look over your planning notes and get an overall picture of your day. If you are planning an elegant soiree with fine crystal and a delicate lace gown, a classic car from the 20s to the 40s would be perfect. If your wedding day is a fun rock ‘n’ roll inspired event you can’t go past a chromed out car from the 50s.
Then there are all manner of fun vehicles in between such as Kombi vans for a country or beach vintage wedding, hot rods, stretch vintage vehicles to fit the entire bridal party and restored London taxis or yellow cabs!
So much of the wedding planning process tends to be the brides domain, but choosing a car to reflect your day is something that every groom will enjoy being part of.
So brides if you want to keep your fiancé on your good side and you trust his judgement, hand this one over to him and let him choose the vehicles.
Once you’ve thought about what sort of vehicle would suit your wedding day there can also be a few options regarding the hiring of these vehicles. Most companies offer a full service where your hire fee includes all of their insurances, the use of the vehicle for a set amount of time and also a driver for the time. Some even include lovely little niceties such as a little red carpet, champagne and crystal flutes for the bridal party during photos (although most vintage car companies will not permit this to be consumed within the car so be ready to drink up or tip it if you are moving to a few locations in your photography session!).
The other option that some businesses offer is a self-drive package. This tends to be more prevalent with companies who offer the cute little London cabs, but every now and then you see it pop up among classic 50s cars. With this option the fee simply covers the hire of the vehicle, and it’s up to you to arrange someone to drive the car. Before leaping into this choice it’s really important to sit and work through the logistics, as it can be a great money saver if it works for you or it could be quite inconvenient.
Of course you as the bride and groom certainly don’t want to be driving your bridal party around. The only time this would be fun is a romantic elopement where you can cruise around together in a convertible with the wind in your hair, but for a more traditional wedding day you want to be enjoying the moments with your bridal party not stressing over where to park! It’s also not very considerate to request groomsmen or bridesmaids to be the driver as they too would much rather be kicking back enjoying the day with everyone else. If you have any special friends that aren’t in the bridal party or perhaps a couple of uncles or cousins who don’t mind driving they can be a lovely choice.
The other point to bear in mind with self drive options is that some companies will require you to take out your own insurance in case of accidents, or have you sign an agreement with their own insurance that sees you potentially paying an excess of several thousand dollars should there be an accident. If the thought of this makes your stomach churn, perhaps the self drive option is not the best for you.
With so many businesses around offering vintage car hire and so many rules and regulations from state to state governing the safety of these vehicles, it’s important to have an open conversation with the company you are considering booking. Ask them to view their licences & find out about their experience, and if in doubt each state has information freely available through Departments of Transport.
*This article was featured first in Vintage Bride Magazine issue 2