FixTheMusic is one of the leading suppliers of bands, DJs and musicians for destination weddings in Europe. Since 2015 we have specialised in sending some of the UK’s best bands to countries including France, Spain, Italy, Cyprus, Greece, Portugal and beyond.
We now work with some of Europe’s most exclusive destination wedding planners and luxury wedding venues and provide amazing live music for some of the world’s best parties.
But coordinating a band to travel overseas for a one-off show isn’t always straightforward – and the prospect of organising flights, accommodation and equipment hire can leave many couples discouraged.
This experience has given us at FixTheMusic a unique insight into destination weddings and the bands that regularly perform at them. In this post, we’ll cover some top tips on how to hire a band for your destination weddings, some pitfalls to avoid – and most importantly, how to find the very best destination wedding bands.
We’ll start by going through a few of the most frequently asked questions that we receive from couples considering booking a band for their destination wedding.
Should I hire a local band or an English band from the UK for my wedding?
The answer to this question will vary according to a few factors. Probably the first consideration is your budget: flying a band from the UK to your destination wedding is rarely a cheap thing to do. The biggest expenses (apart from the band’s performance fee itself of course) are usually the cost of flights and equipment hire locally.
Secondly, whether you need to fly in a band from overseas will also depend on local talent available. There are many great bands based in countries across Europe – unfortunately not all of them have the best online presence, which can make it difficult to discover them when trying to organise your wedding from another country.
FixTheMusic has curated a growing selection of local bands, DJs and musicians in countries such as France, Spain, Italy, Greece and Cyprus. So you might want to check out the local talent as well as international bands.
How do bands quote for destination weddings overseas?
When it comes to the band providing you with their price, there are usually two ways they do this: some prefer to provide a quote for just their performance fee and then require the client to cover all of their expenses. Other bands are willing to provide the client with an all-inclusive quote, which includes their accommodation and travel expenses.
Usually the cost of hiring a PA system and any other equipment is not included as it can be quite time-consuming to obtain quotes from local suppliers for this and the prices can vary widely between suppliers. FixTheMusic has a network of trusted equipment suppliers in many locations across Europe so please let us know if we can help with this.
What expenses do bands normally need to be covered for them?
As mentioned above, some bands prefer not to provide all-inclusive quotes; instead, they quote for just their performance fee and request the client to pay for all of their additional expenses. These usually include flights from their nearest airport (with some baggage allowance for instruments), transfers in the destination country (e.g. taxis), accommodation, food and drinks, and PA system / equipment hire.
What are the pitfalls to avoid when hiring a band for a destination wedding?
Probably the most frequent issue couples encounter when trying to hire a destination wedding band is finding reasonably priced suppliers to hire a PA / sound system and equipment from. In the past couple of years, we’ve seen prices for hiring a basic PA system range from €250 to €2,000. Often your wedding planner can help put you in touch with trusted local suppliers, or feel free to get in touch with us – we’re always happy to help hunt for the best equipment hire companies.
Another dilemma couples often face is whether to arrange for the band to arrive the day before the wedding or on the day of the wedding itself. Many bands will charge an extra fee to arrive the day before – as it means they can’t accept any other work or gigs the night before. But it can be risky having the band arrive on the morning of the wedding as it doesn’t leave much time for flight delays or other disruptions to the band’s journey.
How can I get the most out of a band when hiring them for my destination wedding?
If you’ve booked a UK band for your destination wedding, many will offer to perform for other parts of your wedding day at a heavily reduced rate, e.g. during the ceremony or some background musical entertainment at your drinks reception.
Although most UK weddings tend to finish by midnight, weddings on the continent usually go on until the small hours. Bands experienced at performing for destination weddings will know this already and be ready to extend their usual timings until 1am or 2am (though some may charge extra for this or timings later this).
Who are your most popular destination wedding bands?
The following covers bands are among our most popular groups for destination weddings in Europe. They perform a diverse range of musical genres, including pop, rock and indie, soul, funk and Motown, and RnB, hip-hop and garage music.
If you'd like to receive free quotes from our bands that are available to hire for destination weddings submit your enquiry to get started.
We’ve tried to make it as easy as possible to hire English wedding bands abroad, and we hope to help many more couples find their perfect wedding band in the years to come.
If you're planning your own destination wedding, what are your plans for the live music or entertainment on your special day? Tell us in the comments section below!
— Ed is a recovering lawyer, having worked at international firm Hogan Lovells in London and Hong Kong before moving to a specialist practice in Mayfair. He left law to return to one of his earliest passions — music.