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  • Writer's pictureAmanda Campbell

Navigating the Game: Wedding Planning in Columbia, South Carolina

Football on field line

What does football have to do with wedding planning in Columbia, South Carolina? Believe it or not, it's a key factor that can impact the availability of hotel rooms in downtown Columbia! This blog explores the intersection of football fervor and wedding festivities, shedding light on the considerations you need to make for a seamless wedding planning experience.


In the South, brides often adhere to the tradition of aligning their wedding dates with the football schedule of their favorite team. College football holds a special place in Southern culture, and choosing a wedding date around away games ensures a lively and spirited atmosphere without competing with the influx of visitors during home games.


Congratulations on your upcoming wedding! If you're planning to tie the knot in Columbia, South Carolina, hotel accommodations for your guests are a crucial detail that might not be on your radar just yet. Beyond college football, various events can lead to a surge in hotel bookings. To ensure your guests have a comfortable stay, it's essential to be aware of potential sell-out dates. Check Experience Columbia for local events and activities.


To assist you in choosing your wedding date, here's a list of some of the busiest times in Columbia:


The University of South Carolina brings many people to the Columbia area for several events every year. The three events that have the most impact on hotel availability:

- Home Football Game Days

- Graduation Days

- Family Weekend


Football Fever - Carolina Home Game Dates:

If you’ve lived in the South for long, you know football is a passion here and South Carolinians are passionate about their Gamecocks. (True fans can have a Gamecock wedding. These Carolina brides can get married in Rutledge Chapel or have mascot Cocky show up at their wedding reception!) When the football season is in full swing, hotels can fill up fast with fans coming from out-of-town to flock to Williams-Brice Stadium. Be sure to check the University of South Carolina's football schedule at www.GamecocksOnline.com to avoid clashing with home game weekends, which in Fall 2024 will be August 31st, September 14th and 21st, October 5th, and November 2nd, 16th, & 23rd! Of course, you can't keep the groomsmen from checking the score!


Celebrate Cap-and-Gown - University of South Carolina Graduation Dates:

Celebrations abound during graduation season, and hotels often reach full capacity as families gather to honor their graduates. Spring graduation in 2024 will be May 3rd & 4th, while 2025 graduation falls on May 9th-10th.


Family Visits - University of South Carolina Family Weekend:

Family weekend is another significant event that draws student’s families to Columbia. To avoid competing for hotel rooms with parents eager to spend time with their college students be mindful the 2024 event is September 19th-21st.


The Masters Tournament Week

Surprisingly, the Masters Tournament Week, hosted in Augusta, Georgia, can impact Columbia's hotel availability because of its proximity to Columbia . Golf enthusiasts and event-goers may book accommodations in the surrounding areas, including Columbia. Double-check the tournament dates (2024 dates are April 8th-14th) and plan accordingly.


To alleviate the stress of booking their own hotel for your wedding in Columbia, South Carolina, consider providing your guests with a list of recommended hotels well in advance. Negotiating group rates or reserving room blocks can also secure accommodations for your loved ones.


Remember, early planning is key to ensuring a smooth and enjoyable experience for everyone involved. By staying informed about major events in Columbia, you can optimize your wedding planning process and make sure your guests have a comfortable place to stay during your celebration.



[Image credits: Football photo by Dave Adamson on Unsplash.]




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