What to include—and leave off—your wedding-day vehicle

This story first appeared in the Spring/Summer 2020 issue of Columbus Weddings, published December 2019.

There are many great reasons to rent a party bus or limousine for your wedding day. Maybe you want to take the stress out of driving between venues, or you need to take a trip for pictures after the ceremony. Maybe you just want to celebrate celebrity-style. Still, not all transportation companies are created equal, so you now need to figure out what to bring along for the ride. 

Drink Up

Do you want a Champagne toast with your wedding party or to just crack a few beers with the boys? Check with your rental company to see what’s provided and whether you’re allowed to BYOB. Most will have a small cooler or dry bar, and some may even supply drinkware.

“Classic Limousine provides champagne flutes, ice for the coolers and cups for mixed drinks,” says Shawn Antill, president of Classic Limousines of Columbus. “Not every company does this, but we do it free of charge.” One thing you will want to avoid, however, is bringing too much. Space is already tight, and the last thing you need is to be carrying around six-packs all day because you overestimated. “If you have a wedding party of 12 people, you don’t need six cases of beer and four bottles of Champagne,” Antill says.

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Chow Down

There’s a good chance you’ll want to bring some snacks or even lunch for you and your group, especially if your ceremony is in the early afternoon and your reception doesn’t start until the evening. Again, check with the company to ensure self-provided food is OK. If it is, stick to sandwiches and finger food. Mess-free snacks—think pretzels, not Cheetos—are also great. Simpler food will make cleaning up a lot easier and also decrease the chance of getting something on that nice rental tux or the vehicle’s upholstery. “If they do trash the vehicle with [food], there is going to be an excessive cleaning fee of $100,” says Antill. So skip the soup and pasta, at least until dinner.

Party On

To keep the party running smoothly right into the reception, there are a few accessories that you may want to consider packing. “A lot of women, when they are wearing high heels, will bring some flats for the reception,” says Antill. The party bus, post-photo session, is the perfect place to make the switch. Also helpful is a makeup bag or dopp kit with basic touch-up supplies, including hair spray, a stain remover pen and safety pins—just in case those beautiful meadow photos result in an unexpected snag or stain.

“Much of what we are involved with is pictures. We take them to the ceremony, wait and then drive them around for pictures,” Antil says. “A lot of women want to be able to do some last-minute stuff [right before photos are taken], because these are the pictures you will be looking at for the next 50 years.”