All brides and grooms-to-be that have read wedding blogs know how challenging it can be to plan a wedding. Even with a wedding checklist and a full wedding coordinator available, picking every detail for the wedding can be time-consuming and tiring even for a couple excited to tie the knot.
But with all the pre-wedding planning, many couples may be forgetting about the post-wedding checklist and what they have to do after the wedding. Here’s a post-wedding checklist to make sure all your wedding and marriage-related tasks are settled and all loose ends are tied before you and your partner can begin your happily ever after.
Ensure All Vendors Are Paid
Most vendors have policies about receiving full payment before your wedding date, but for those that allow for payment after the wedding, make sure you have enough cash to pay your remaining balance with all your vendors. Leave the money with your wedding planner or with a trusted member of the bridal party.
It’s important to pay your vendors after your wedding party ends because you don’t want these vendors to chase you for payment while you’re settling into your new life. Once most of your guests have left and your vendors are starting to wrap your wedding up, make sure they don’t leave without you paying. It also helps to tip the staff members for their service during your wedding.
Don’t Waste the Leftovers
This applies to all the leftover goodies you might have as the wedding ends. For the most obvious – food – decide whether you want to give the extras to your staff and vendors, to your guests, or bring them home. It’s OK to choose to bring all the leftovers home, but if it’s a lot of leftover food, it might not be practical to keep everything as it could spoil before you and your partner manage to eat everything. Your best bet is to allow the staff, vendors, and members of the bridal party to take home some of the food.
You may also have leftover party favors. If it’s an edible wedding favor, take it home or gift it to the staff and vendors present. For non-food items, see if you and your partner can use it at home or if it’s something the vendors and staff will want to use. Staff members can appreciate excess favors like hand towels or salt shakers, but they might not be keen on accepting magnets with you and your partner’s faces on it.
Gift Your Wedding Entourage
In the Philippines, rehearsal dinners aren’t a common part of our wedding traditions. So, to thank your wedding entourage for all their assistance in helping with the wedding, be sure to give them a special gift of thanks.
In a traditional Filipino wedding, your entourage will include: your bridesmaids, maid of honor, groomsmen, best man, primary and secondary sponsors, ring bearer, coin bearer, and flower girls. Make sure you gift these members appropriately as a sign of your thanks.
Have Your Dress Cleaned or Returned
For those who have bought traditional wedding dresses, these need to be cleaned and boxed by a professional immediately. The longer you delay your cleaning and preserving, the harder it will be to remove certain types of stains. This is to preserve the dress’ quality when you store it away so that it won’t discolor or suffer moth damage. Preserving your wedding dress makes it a good keepsake as a reminder of your wedding, or you can pass it down to your future daughter.
Those who hosted civil weddings and opted for a simple wedding dress, your dress may not require special care. Depending on the type of dress you choose, it may be enough to have it dry cleaned or washed like you would normally do with your everyday clothes. Those who opted not to buy a wedding dress and simply wore their best clothes to a civil wedding in your local mayor’s office or courthouse can simply have their clothes washed regularly.
Finally, those who opted to rent their wedding gown must return their dress on or before the date you and your rental shop agreed on. Most shops will handle the cleaning, so there is no need for you to have it cleaned before returning. Significant or major damage or stains to the dress will cost extra to clean, which will be deducted from your deposit. Rental shops’ policies can vary, so be sure to read the post-wedding instructions carefully to avoid additional fees.
Deposit Gift Checks and Cash
It’s good manners to cash-in or deposit any checks you receive within two weeks of receiving it. In the Philippines, checks go stale if you don’t cash it in within six months from date stated on the check. But that doesn’t mean you should wait six months, as the giver may have assumed you already cashed it in by then and might have spent the available funds in their checking account somewhere else.
To avoid incidents like these, cash in the check as soon as possible. If you have a bank account, you can simply deposit the check and your bank will be responsible for transferring the money from the giver’s bank to your bank account. Now is also a good time to deposit any other amount you received during the wedding. If you don’t have an account, go to any branch of the giver’s bank and submit your check in exchange for cash.
Send Thank You Notes to All Your Guests
Don’t just give notes to those who gave you a gift, take the time to thank everyone for taking time off to celebrate your special day. This is particularly true if you’ve hosted a destination wedding where most of your guests had to drive far away from their homes, book overnight accommodations, and bought attire to match your wedding dress code.
Sort Wedding Gifts
As you and your new spouse get settled to live together, you need to sort your wedding gifts. Some of these gifts need to be organized at home, while others stored away as you might not need it immediately in the early days of your marriage. Some appliances may also be duplicate, so you have the choice of whether to sell, exchange (if you’re on a gift registry or the giver gave you a gift receipt), or store it in case you need a second appliance.
This can be a lot easier if you opt for a gift registry. Some gift registries prevent guests from buying the same gift twice, while other registries allow you to exchange a duplicate gift for something within your list near the same value.
Arrange Your Finances
You and your spouse should have already discussed finances before you got married, but now that you’re officially husband and wife, you can now arrange your finances jointly. Once you receive your marriage certificate, you can start arranging your finances like:
- Opening a joint bank account for household expenses;
- Updating your medical benefits to cover your spouse;
- Changing your insurance coverage to cover your spouse;
- File for personal exemption for taxes;
- Arranging your wills that indicate what will go to your spouse.
View Wedding Photos and Videos
Your wedding photographer and videographer should have advised you how long it will take them to send you and your spouse a copy of the photos and videos. They will send you the finished output (usually in digital format), so expect that to deliver a few weeks after the wedding. If your photography and videography packages include a physical album, choose which photos you want to be printed and displayed before the photographer has it made.
(Optional) Legally Change Your Name
Although it’s tradition in the Philippines for a woman to take her husband’s surname, this is actually optional and women aren’t required to take their husband’s name. Article 370 of the New Civil Code of the Philippines states that a married woman may use her husband’s surname, with the keyword being “may.” If she does not want to use her husband’s name, she has the option not to have it changed.
Fair warning for the brides-to-be, though: should you decide to change your last name, you cannot go back to your maiden name unless your marriage is dissolved or if your partner passes away. So, think carefully if you want to change your last name before you decide to have it changed. There are different pros and cons to changing your surname, so consider what you think is best for yourself, your spouse, and any children you may have in the future.
To have your name and marital status changed, get a copy of your marriage certificate from the Philippine Statistics Authority. Bring your marriage certificate and one or two valid IDs to the following government offices:
- Social Security System
- Department of Foreign Affairs (Passport)
- NBI Clearance
- Land Transportation Office (Driver’s License)
Outside of government offices, you also need to change your last name in your bank account. The requirements may vary, so call your bank for more information.
Enjoy Your Honeymoon (and the Rest of Your Lives Together!)
Once you’ve completed your post-wedding checklist, you and your partner are now free to celebrate your union alone through your honeymoon. By completing your tasks before going on your honeymoon, there’s nothing for you to worry about during your trip and no tasks to greet you upon your return. After your honeymoon, you and your partner can spend your time adjusting to your new married life as husband and wife because you’ve already dealt with the important tasks to do after a wedding.
Author: Justine Lubag
Justine loves costumes, puns, horror films, and blue dresses. A literature graduate from the south, she writes online content for a living but is super shy about others reading her fan fiction.