Ask our wedding planners here at Commodore about the impact that the millennial generation has had on wedding traditions and they will read off a pretty lengthy list. Traditions have been part of weddings for centuries, with each culture offering its own. Most folks over 40 probably included most of the same traditions in their weddings that their parents did. Millennials are pushing against that, and redefining the wedding “experience” in ways that suit their unique world view. 

They value experiences over material concerns. Expensive outlays on dresses, gifts, hotels and even rings are being challenged as unneeded in creating an event that is exciting and memorable. Location weddings, including a day on San Francisco Bay in a chartered yacht, are more popular than ever as a result. 

Wedding Traditions that Millennials are Showing the Door

Wedding Parties and Outfits

Wedding parties are no longer adhering strictly to the separation of men and women into bridesmaids and groomsmen. The bride and the groom may invite a mix of men and women to stand at their side for the ceremony. And wearing a uniform style of dress or suit is becoming optional, too.

Gifts for Guests and Wedding Party Members

Couples no longer wish to stress out over finding “the perfect keepsake” for groomsmen, bridesmaids or guests. The experience is their gift. Indeed, it occurs to some that the keepsake means a lot to them, but less so to the people actually taking it home. And the gifts they do give are locally themed to emphasize sustainability and support local businesses.

Formal Meals and the Wedding Cake

Served sit-down meals have given way to the buffet, or even food stations, that allow continuous eating mixed in with the speeches, music and dancing. And while the cake is still a centerpiece of millennial weddings, the formal cutting of the cake with the newlyweds feeding each other a piece is becoming less common.

The Bouquet and Garter Toss

With fewer single, unattached people within a wedding party, the concept of picking the next bride or groom by flinging the bouquet or garter into a scrum is growing less popular.

The Honeymoon

The honeymoon still happens, but with over 50% of newlyweds it happens sometime after the wedding. There is a sense that the best time for the wedding ceremony is not necessarily the best time to take a vacation. This actually makes a lot of sense for a lot of reasons, and we expect this trend to continue.

Many wedding traditions will continue also, but expect Millennials to put their own stamp on them. “For a generation that prizes experience as a luxury good,” wrote a writer on The Knot, “saying yes to the dress may not matter nearly so much as saying yes to a wedding experience, one that can be shared both in person and on social media.”

Commodore Offers the Unique Wedding Experience Millennials Love

Many of the trends cited above fit quite well onto a Commodore yacht, making it a great Millennial wedding venue. We have long served food at food stations, for instance. Our musical ensembles and DJs oten work with couples on music programs that replace classical tunes with contemporary songs. And our unique style of open-air ceremonies creates exactly the sort of memorable setting that provides a wonderful experience for everyone involved.

Explore with us the uniqueness of a Commodore wedding cruise. Contact us here or call us at 877-346-4000.