1. Clean or return your wedding dress
Whether you’ve purchased your dress or rented one from a bridal salon, don’t forget to have it cleaned. If you’ve bought your dress, and you’re looking to preserve it, send it to a professional cleaner or trustworthy bridal gown specialist, who will take care of it for you. If your dress is a rental, the salon will usually have it cleaned on their end. Just check if there are any visible stains or tears before returning it though, as there may be additional charges.
2. Check for damages
It’s easy to get carried away when you’re in a celebratory mood, especially if you’ve provided an open bar. Check your venue, bridal suite, as well as decorations and other rentals to see if any have been damaged, so you don’t end up with a rude shock when presented with the bill later.
3. Pay all outstanding bills
Don’t begin married life in debt, if you can! If there are bills you haven’t settled yet, like the photographer, makeup artist, hair stylist and so on, try to pay them the day after the wedding if they don’t insist on payment before.
4. Don’t forget the tip!
While you’re not required to tip your vendors, especially if you’re giving them a seat during your reception, or are providing meals, it’s always nice to give a small token of appreciation to people like the venue staff, cleaners or helpers at the solemnisation venue, hotel staff (concierge, butler, or staff who provide room service), and so on, to thank them for all their hard work. (Here's a guide on how much ang bao to give to your wedding party and vendors)
Photo: Her World Brides March 2016. Ramada Singapore.
5. Check that everything’s packed
This includes all your belongings from your room or bridal suite, as well as wedding leftovers (like favours, centrepieces, decorations, guest book) you may have left. I suggest you make a list of items to pack (split them in two – one for the wedding, and one for your personal belongings) before going to your hotel or wedding venue, and check them off one by one before leaving. Also, don’t forget to save the top tier of your wedding cake, for your anniversary!
6. Return the car
If you’ve rented a car for the wedding check when you’ve got to return it, and do so in a timely manner, so you don’t incur additional charges. Again, check if there are any damages or scratches before returning it.
7. Distribute the leftovers
Have you got leftover wedding cake and desserts from the night before? Ask your family or relatives to see if they’d like to take any home. But of course, don’t offer half-eaten cake tiers. Ask if your venue can provide to-go boxes and divide the cake or desserts for each family to take home.
8. Send thank you cards
These should be sent out within three months after your wedding, to thank your family, friends for helping out with the wedding, and guests, for being present at your celebrations. A good practice to cultivate, is to start writing them the minute you’ve received wedding gifts, or almost immediately after the wedding, so you don’t end up with a backlog of cards, and start (potentially) getting lazy. These days, thank you cards usually come with pictures of the bridal couple, as well as other pictures of guests taken by the professional photographer or photo booth. But it’s up to you, whether you want to incur the added postage or not. What’s more important: a personally penned note to thank your guest (or guests if you’ve invited partners or family members), and your signatures at the bottom. If your guests have been especially generous with their gifts, a standard note of thanks with no sign-off at the bottom, may come across as rude or thoughtless. See other wedding etiquette tips here.
9. Change your last name
If you’re taking on your husband’s last name, or you’re looking to have a double-barrelled one, try and get the change done as soon as you can. There are several procedures to go about doing it, plus plenty of paperwork as you’ll need your new name to be on your official marriage license, identity card, bank account, credit cards, membership, insurance, employer’s payroll, passport, and others. See more tips here.
10. Take down your wedding website
Prevent any sensitive information from lurking around the web by taking down your site as soon as possible. This includes your names, addresses (if you’ve asked guests to send RSVPs your way), wedding date, and so on. And, if you’ve paid to host your site, taking it down earlier means you don’t have to spend extra money on servers. If you’ve got a dedicated e-mail address, you can keep that for a while longer, as people might be sending you photos, and so on. See the essentials for your wedding website here.