Singaporebrides | Real Weddings

May 2018

Jeraldine Phneah and Zhi Hao’s Under-$1,000 Overseas Pre-Wedding Shoot

Jeraldine and Zhi Hao went to Hanoi for an overseas pre-wedding shoot under $1,000.

Jeraldine Phneah, 26, Current Affairs Writer at and Regional Account Manager in the data analytics industry, and Tan Zhi Hao, 27, Human Resource Professional, saw a growing trend of overseas pre-wedding shoots in luxurious locales, but decided not to spend outside of their means as they’d just started working. Instead, the couple flew to charming Hanoi for an under-$1,000 overseas pre-wedding shoot.

How did you first meet?

Jeraldine: I met Zhi Hao through a mutual friend. We got along well due to our common interest in social issues. We remained close friends throughout the years and supported each other when facing challenges through different life stages.

Eventually, we decided to be together. Our strong friendship and mutual understanding was a solid foundation for our relationship and marriage.

What do you love most about your partner?

Zhi Hao: She is really humorous. I will never fear I would be bored for the rest of my life. She always gives me something to laugh about.

Jeraldine: The thing I love best about my husband is his kind heart. He is always going out of his way to help others without expecting anything in return. We also share the same values such as being passionate about social and environmental issues.

Being with Zhi Hao has definitely helped me become a better person. Under his positive influence, I gradually learnt how to express my opinions better by being open to what others have to say and to not disregard their feelings.

Most importantly, Zhi Hao gives me a sense of security and is someone who is willing to do his share at home. Individual success is often best achieved in a stable context. The same way that it’s easier to do well in school if you come from a supportive family, it is easier to focus on my career with a partner who is stable and reliable.

You managed to do an under-$1,000 overseas pre-wedding shoot. Tell us how you did it.

Jeraldine Phneah: There is a growing trend of Singaporean couples taking their pre-wedding photoshoots overseas in luxurious destinations such as Paris or Santorini. Given that both of us only started working three years ago, we wanted to spend within our means and this was not the most feasible option for us.

One day, when I was browsing through Instagram, I chanced upon the profile of wedding studio based in Hanoi. Their full day photoshoot package was around S$900, much more affordable than many wedding packages we saw in Singapore. On top of that, I really loved their photos. We decided to pick them because of their great photography skills and reasonable price.

My bridal package came with two gowns, one Ao Dai, flowers, props, transport, and makeup. The outfits were provided by Pixel Studio’s own local vendors – Lecia Bridal. All we needed to do was to visit their store the day before to choose the outfits.

How was your shoot?

Jeraldine: We chose to shoot in Tam Đảo National Park. It isn’t too far from Hanoi, just a two-hour ride by car. Both of us love nature, so taking our pictures in an area dedicated to environmental conservation really suited us.

Zhi Hao: We also selected the old quarter in Hanoi because of the charming architecture and rich history. The shoot was nice. The photographers weren’t just photographers but also felt like guides showing us the rural areas of their country. The cooler weather also ensured that I didn’t die of heat exhaustion as I would have if I had done the shoot in Singapore wearing the same attire.

Jeraldine: The two photographers and the makeup artist were really friendly, hardworking, and patient. They were also trustworthy and there were no hidden costs. Highly recommended!

When was the wedding and what was it like?

Jeraldine: We had a low-key and intimate ceremony held at the Registry of Marriage in November. It was attended by our close friends and family members.

Preparation was straightforward. I bought a simple wedding gown from Zalora and we got a hand bouquet from the wet market near my office. As for accessories, I wore my late ah ma’s earrings that she had given to me. I grew up with my grandparents in a three-room flat at Bukit Ho Swee. I was really close to my ah ma but unfortunately, she could not be there. So, wearing her earrings made me to feel like she was with me, witnessing this special moment in my life.

For the celebrations to follow, I would definitely use SingaporeBrides when planning for the reception. Having all the information about the different venues in one site would save us a lot of time during the shortlisting process.

The Pre-Wedding Photography: Pixel Studio Vietnam
The Bride’s Outfits and Shoes: Lecia Bridal
The Groom’s Outfits and Shoes: G2000
The Shoot Locations: Tam Đảo National Park, Hoan Kiem Lake Fountain, Old Quarter

Credits: Images by Pixel Studio Vietnam

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