Study: Caribbean Has a Lock on Destination Weddings MarketApril 25, 2012 By: Joe Pike
Travel Agent was able to get our hands of the recently released The Knot Market Intelligence: 2012 Destination Weddings Study and found that the Caribbean was the leading region in the world for destination weddings by 15 percent.
Wedding website, TheKnot.com, polled 2,757 qualified respondents and found that 39 percent cited the Caribbean as the best wedding destination region in the world. Mexico finished second with 24 percent while Hawaii received 20 percent of the vote. In fact, 83 percent, or 8 in every 10 international destination weddings, take place in these three places.
Jamaica continues to be the heavy leader in all Caribbean destination weddings. In fact, the study showed that more than one in three Caribbean destination weddings take place in Jamaica, which netted a whopping 34 percent of the votes. Travel Agent attributes this mainly to the convenient airfare from the Northeast U.S., but also to Jamaica’s array of both luxury and affordable resorts.
The Dominican Republic finished second among Caribbean islands with 16 percent of the vote while The Bahamas came in at third with 13 percent. Again, Travel Agent attributes flight frequency to both destinations' success in this market. Also, the Dominican Republic’s array of all-inclusive resorts continue to make it a viable option for Americans looking to tie the knot overseas. The Bahamas’ proximity, as well as having some of the most beautiful beaches in all of the Caribbean, most likely contributed to its impressive, third-place finish.
Some surprises to Travel Agent, however, were that Puerto Rico only received seven percent of the vote while the booming romantic destination of St. Lucia received only five percent. We attribute a lack of direct flights to St. Lucia as well as the island’s affluent-heavy resort market to the small percentage.
As far as Puerto Rico goes, Travel Agent would venture to guess that most people want to get married in a destination they haven't been to before and perhaps most Americans traveling to the Caribbean for their weddings have been to Puerto Rico before given its proximity and the fact that is doesn’t require a passport.