Summer Wedding Hacks: How to Keep Your Guests Cool and Comfortable

As a wedding photographer, I’ve seen firsthand how the heat can impact a summer wedding. But with the right planning and preparation, you can turn the heat into a highlight of your special day. From refreshing treats to clever accessories, discover how to make your summer wedding a memorable and enjoyable experience for you and your guests.

As a luxury wedding photographer, I’ve had the pleasure of capturing summer weddings in Australia. And let me tell you, it’s a hot one! But don’t worry, I’ve got you covered with these 15 summer wedding essentials to keep your guests cool and comfortable.

Summer Wedding Basics

Before we dive into the tips, let’s talk about the basics. Did you know that an average summer day in Australia can reach temperatures of up to 45 degrees Celsius (113 F)? That’s why it’s crucial to plan ahead and make sure your guests are comfortable.

Bottles of Water

It may sound simple, but providing bottled water for your guests is a must-have for any summer wedding. In fact, nearly 60% of couples hosting a wedding said they would have water on site. This is especially important when you’re working with a hot day mixed with alcohol. Bottled water in baskets, water in tubs of ice, or even water jugs are great ways to make sure every guest can stay hydrated during your ceremony or reception.

Outdoor Reception

66% of all couples choose an outdoor or garden ceremony for their wedding. But what about your wedding reception? If you’re getting married in summer, the chances are you can plan more for hot weather options. Embracing the heat of the day as it cools off into the night is a beautiful way to finish your evening dancing under the stars.

Hydration Station

Want to make sure your guests stay hydrated but think water is too boring? Give your guests a hydration station to choose from. 30% of couples getting married in summer will set up cool drinks in a station for their guests to enjoy. Ice cold flavoured water, lemonade, or even kombucha are great ways to stave off the heat while staying hydrated.

Paper Fans

While you might not have access to power to add fans to your reception or ceremony, giving each guest an individual hand fan can be a great way to make sure they keep cool during your ceremony. These can be themed to your day and left at the entrance to your ceremony or reception. Plus, it means that your meticulously designed (and potentially expensive!) wedding programs won’t be used and bent as makeshift fans!

Pop-up Bar

Weddings can be boring for guests when they’re stuck at a venue between the ceremony and reception while you’re off getting your photos taken. To help keep your guests entertained, as well as make the most of the sunny weather, give them something extra to enjoy. A pop-up bar is always a winner and will also make a neutral area where your guests can mingle and meet one another.

Parasols or Umbrellas

Umbrellas aren’t just a wet weather option. Having a few baskets or tall vases with parasols scattered around your seating area will give your guests something to shade themselves with to keep cool. Plus, there are plenty of options and designs to choose from so you’ll be sure to find a design that matches your wedding theme.


Let’s face it, none of us really wants to slime ourselves with sunscreen while we’re wearing our wedding day best. But it’s the responsible thing to do. Having some available for yourself and your guests will give everyone the option to cover up. And if that doesn’t persuade you, then not having unseemly sunburn marks in the wedding photos might!

Gelato or Ice Cream Cart

What better way to keep cool than with a sweet treat? Food trucks and pop-up bars are incredibly popular at weddings, and gelato carts are no exception. This is a great way to entertain your guests between ceremony and reception. Or give them an extra dessert in the evening.

Fruit Station

Want to go the healthier option? Interactive food stations can also include fruit. Get your venue or caterer to cut up some fresh summer fruits such as watermelon, pineapple, and berries. But make sure that when you do have fruits available, you also have a set section available for rinds or pips.


Zooper Doopers are an Australian icon. But they might not be appropriate for the occasion of your wedding. Enter the alco-popsicle! Your guests will be delighted with flavours such as champagne or peach bellini to choose from while staying cool on your big day.

Shaded Areas or Shade Sails

If you’re hosting an outdoor ceremony then the chances are that your guests will want somewhere shady to sit or stand while you exchange nuptials. However, some garden venues won’t allow you to set up a marquee because they require support posts in the ground, which will leave both you and your guests exposed to the elements. If you’re worried about the heat, look for a ceremony location with natural shade or a venue that has shade sails raised above the ground.

Dollar Store Saves the Day!

Go pick yourself up some cooling towels from the dollar store – super cheap and you can keep them on your neck and sweat away and they’ll stay cool! Additionally, you’ll also find water spray fans! They’re portable and will keep you and your newly married partner feeling nice and fresh in between sunset photos – because trust me, it’ll still be hot!


White love heart sunnies, an oversized chic hat, and I’m game! You can cover up and both look fashionable at the same time!

Push Your Wedding for Later in the Day

The summer heat is particularly strong in the middle of the day. Rather than planning an early ceremony or reception for your summer wedding, why not push the time of your wedding to slightly later? In December having a 7pm ceremony is a great option – enough time for family photos and sunset photos! An evening wedding in summer will make sure the weather is a bit cooler and also get you closer to that golden hour for photos.

Insect Repellent

The one thing you should make sure is on hand at any summer wedding with outdoor areas is insect repellent. Nobody wants to be eaten alive by bugs at your wedding, least of all you! Have an area where guests can roll or spray repellent if they’re feeling uncomfortable. Or, make sure your venue has some on hand and let guests know where to find it.

Lastly, Find an Air-conditioned Indoor Option

Saying that Australia can get hot is the understatement of the year. If you are worried about your summer wedding being impacted by extreme heat, chat with your venue about hot weather options. Similar to a wet weather option, this could involve moving your ceremony or reception indoors. You’ll still be able to enjoy the outdoors for photos, but at least you and your guests will be able to enjoy the comfort of air-conditioning for the most important parts of the day.

Ready to capture stunning summer wedding memories? Book me now as your photographer and let’s create unforgettable moments together! Contact me today and let’s start bringing your dream day to life no matter the weather or time of year.

Happy planning!