Choosing a Wedding Date in Charleston
Too hot? Too cold? Just right? Feeling like Goldilocks yet?
There are so many factors that play into choosing the right wedding date for you in the Charleston area, and this is one of the most-asked questions I get from my couples.
Weather, of course, is never truly predictable or consistent – if I could control the weather on a wedding day, I would be a multi millionaire at this point (can you imagine that package add on? “Wedding Day Weather Guarantee” – how would I even price that?!) Although not totally predictable, there are some trends and things to consider when choosing a wedding date:
- Consider your own weather preferences. Do you like a balmy 75 degree day? Run hot and prefer a cooler temperature? That is something to consider when choosing a date.
- Consider your guests comfort. Are you planning an outdoor affair? Perhaps book your wedding in one of the more historically “temperate” times of year – not during the summer (too hot/humid) or during the middle of winter. You have far more leeway for a wedding date if you prefer an indoor or indoor/outdoor venue option.
- Consider your budget. Wedding venues in Charleston are charged based on seasonality. “Peak Wedding Season” (typically considered March – June as well as September – November) carries higher venue fees. If you are looking to get a deal on your venue cost, your best bet is to book during “Non Peak Wedding Season” (typically considered July – August as well as December – February) In this same vein, hotels for your guests will vary in price based on seasonality – winter is a much more cost effective time of year to travel in Charleston. Make sure to check the Charleston Visitors Bureau page for events coming up as well – city-wide events like the Spoleto Festival (May-June), College of Charleston graduation (May), and the Cooper River Bridge Run (April) sends hotel occupancy rates skyrocketing, making the cost of securing a hotel skyrocket as well.
Bonus tip: Daylight savings time is also something you should consider when selecting an event month – certain times of year the sun goes down much earlier, which can make taking post-ceremony photos more difficult depending on how you want to structure your photography schedule. Alternatively, if you want a more intimate, romantic setting with lots of candlelight, that can be hard to accomplish during the summer when the sun is up until 9pm! An easy Google search with a potential wedding date along with the keyword “Charleston sunset time” will give you an idea of when the sun will go down that time of year.
Defined as being from June 1st – November 30th (with “peak” time for hurricanes making landfall between mid-August through mid-October) this is certainly a risky time to get married in Charleston – although October and November continue to be some of the most popular wedding months of the entire year here in the Lowcountry! If you choose to get married during this peak window, I highly recommend seeking out event insurance to cover you in case of a hurricane.
My favorite times of year:
I really love March and April for weddings in Charleston. Typically, the weather is spring-like without being too hot, and the humidity hasn’t yet become a factor. I also like early November as an option. Winter weddings can be incredible as well as long as you plan to utilize a completely indoor or indoor/outdoor venue option, or are open to securing a tent with walls and multiple heating elements.
For more information about Charleston weather trends, take a look at this article by US News and World Report
I hope this is a helpful as you plan your Charleston wedding!