Words Of Wedding Wisdom: WEDDING CARS

Welcome to this series of articles based on my popular book, “The A to Z of Wedding Wisdom” … a few juicy extracts that you might like, to give you a taster of what the book can do to help make your wedding (or a friend or relative’s wedding) superbly successful.

This time, we look at…

Cars

The choice of wedding cars is usually listed as one of the key components of any wedding plan. There certainly is no shortage of choice nowadays of anything from old double-decker London buses to stretch Hummer 4WDs that look like giant breeze blocks on wheels.

If you’re happy to go along with modern limos and cars you’re pretty safe, especially if you use a reputable company that, preferably, has been recommended to you by someone you trust.

Oddball choices

Many companies offer vintage and other lovely old cars as wedding transport and frankly, I can’t think of anything more romantic than being driven around in a 1935 Bentley with real wood, real leather and all of the Agatha Christie style and panache. However once again reality rears its ugly head. Old cars can break down.

If you hire one of these companies, ensure they provide you with one or even two contingency plans – i.e. if that vintage Bentley or Cadillac conks out on the day, what will they replace it with? If they give you a fuzzy answer, use somebody else. Especially if your wedding is scheduled for a popular month, the company concerned might be tempted by greed and hire out all their vehicles to different weddings on the same day. If one vehicle goes sick, they’re stuck. A bigger company probably will have found this one out the hard way earlier on, and is more likely to have appropriate back-up.

Relatives’ and friends’ own

If someone you know has a nice car and offers to drive you to and from your wedding in it, you’ll certainly save some money. However bear in mind that no matter how well intentioned people are, things can still go wrong. If nothing else, you will sleep better in your bed at night knowing that there is a contingency plan in place – even if it is your Mom’s compact with some white ribbon on it.

Suitability

You’ll often see pictures in local newspapers of couples riding off to their wedding reception on a motorcycle or in a small sports car. That’s fine and very romantic and being the cynic that I am, I can’t help wondering what happens to the poor bride’s dress, train, veil, shoes, hair, makeup and sanity on that journey.

A BMW Isetta Bubble car. Yes, really.

Some great friends of mine got married and decided they would drive from the Registry Office to the reception – a distance of about 5 miles – in the groom’s beloved 1960s BMW Isetta Bubble Car. For readers unfamiliar with this vehicle, it’s the size of a small bathtub with three wheels, a front opening door and enough room inside for two underweight 12-year-olds. As you can imagine (see pic on left) there was a great deal of heaving, grunting and swearing as we squeezed the bride into her seat; not only was she wearing an elaborate, full skirted long dress, but also she was 7 months pregnant with twins. Bad idea.

The moral of this, then, is think ahead. When planning your wedding on a lovely sunny summer day the thought of riding to the reception in a vintage MG sports car with your new hubby at the wheel seems delightful. Remember, though, that on the day it could be raining. If you are dead set on using a vehicle that’s less than wedding-dress friendly, have something warmer and drier on standby.

Stretch limos

Most stretch limos are what the motor trade unromantically calls “cut and shut” vehicles – an ordinary car, van or SUV that has been chopped in half vertically, extra paneling installed to extend it, then all welded up again. Provided that this has been done properly there’s no problem, but some “cut and shut” vehicles have been done on the cheap to an alarmingly poor standard. At best this can make the vehicle unreliable (e.g. the electrics may have been wired back up wrongly) and at worst it can make it downright dangerous.

When hiring a stretch limo, choose a reputable company – preferably one that is personally recommended by someone you trust – and avoid the guy around the corner with the 1980s bright purple American stretch parked in his driveway. That might just be a stretch too far…

Image of BMW Isetta borrowed with thanks from MyCarBlog.org.

For all 174 pages of helpful tips and advice, grab your copy of “The A to Z of Wedding Wisdom” from Amazon (USA), Amazon (Canada), Amazon (UK) and all other Amazons.

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