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Marco Werman: If you’re in New England planning to get married and just trying to figure out a date, let me guess, it’s not going to be when the snow is falling, which right now feels like it could go on forever. Nope, you’re going to look into May or June, when there’s no snow. But the question is what about the rain? Wedding planners don’t like that either. There’s a solution for that though. A British travel company, Oliver’s Travels, says it can give you that dry dream wedding. Natasja Rasmussen, your company can do this and guarantee a rain-free day?
Natasja Rasmussen: Yes, we can.
Werman: How does it work?
Rasmussen: So, how it works is we’ve actually teamed up with some cloud bursting experts that are actually based in the States and we’ve been specializing in destination weddings over in France. Now, what we can do is we’ve teamed up with this cloudbursting team and it’s a three week project all up, and what happens is they send over a meteorologist and a pilot along with the aircraft. The aircraft will then travel over the clouds for a 24-hour period and the clouds will burst and disappear before the big day.
Werman: Cloud bursting. So, is this like cloud seeding?
Rasmussen: Exactly, yes. Cloud seeding is just another name for cloud bursting.
Werman: I know governments have done this before, like China did it before the 2008 summer Olympics, but that’s China, that’s a government. Isn’t this really expensive?
Rasmussen: It does come with quite a hefty price tag, you’re right. But previously I guess governments and famous people are what it’s been available to, but now we’re offering it to anyone that would like their perfect wedding day in France.
Werman: How much of a premium does this add onto things overall?
Rasmussen: It’s quite a premium service that starts at 100,000 pounds, which is around $150,000. But for that, you do get the three week project, the pilot and the meteorologist on the ground the week before, and it is a 24-hour period prior to the wedding day where the cloud seeding process takes place.
Werman: I can imagine for somebody who has the money, you look on the opposite side and say “What does a cancelled wedding cost?” and then it starts looking kind of interesting. Where can you have this rain-free wedding? Pretty much anywhere in the world?
Rasmussen: Well, we are just actually launching it in France initially because that’s where the majority of our destination weddings take place, and then hopefully if the service takes off, then we will offer it to other destinations--hopefully here in the UK because, as you can imagine, the weather here is not ideal at the best of times. We get a lot of rain, especially up north, so it would be lovely to bring it up here. But we thought we’d just launch it in France initially.
Werman: And I suppose--you just mentioned the UK--there probably are some no-go spots around the world where you would not offer the service, like India during monsoon season?
Rasmussen: Exactly. Any extreme weather, such as hurricanes, potentially monsoons, that would be out of the question because the weather probably just could not be controlled. But any heavily-clouded area with lots of rain, the service does work.
Werman: Is there a money back guarantee?
Rasmussen: Well, we do say that the success is guaranteed for this, but extreme weather, such as hurricanes, which isn’t very likely in France”¦ But yeah, it is the premium service, so we’re saying yes, we can do it.
Werman: Natasja Rasmussen with Oliver’s Travels in London. Thanks for telling us about the rain-free wedding.
Rasmussen: You’re very welcome. Have a great day.