Are you looking to escape the traditional wedding hustle and bustle? Planning a destination elopement can be a romantic and unique way to say “I do.” Whether you’re thinking about venturing into the wilds of nature, or into the busy cityscape for your elopement day, this guide is meant for you. With careful planning, you can create an unforgettable experience that’s tailored to you and your partner. Here’s a comprehensive guide on how to plan a destination elopement.
The first step in planning a destination elopement is to choose your destination. Consider places that are special to you and your partner, or locations that you’ve always dreamed of visiting. Some popular options include tropical beaches, mountain getaways, and charming European cities. Research your chosen location thoroughly to ensure that it’s feasible for your elopement. If you’re not sure how to choose your destination, check out this blog post!
One of the biggest benefits of eloping is that it can be more cost-effective than a traditional wedding. However, it’s still important to determine your budget and stick to it. Consider factors like travel costs, accommodations, ceremony and celebration expenses, and vendor fees. Your wedding planner can help you create a realistic budget based on your desired location and the size of your celebration.
Hiring a wedding planner who specializes in destination elopements can be a game changer. They can help you navigate the logistical challenges of planning a wedding in a new location, and can suggest vendors and venues that they’ve worked with before. They can also provide valuable insights into the local culture and customs that you’ll need to be aware of. Look for a wedding planner who is experienced in planning destination weddings and has a good reputation.
Each destination has its own set of legal requirements for getting married. Some locations require a waiting period, blood tests, or specific documentation. Research the legal requirements for your chosen destination as soon as possible to ensure that you have enough time to obtain any necessary documents or permits. Your planner (or photographer in some cases) can also assist you with this.
Once you’ve chosen your destination, it’s time to book your travel and accommodations. Consider the time of year you’ll be traveling, as peak travel times can impact the availability and cost of flights and accommodations. Make sure to also research transportation options for getting to and from your wedding venue. If you need suggestions on where to stay, reach out to your planner (or photographer, who will have insights on things like natural lighting!).
Selecting the perfect ceremony location is one of the most important aspects of planning a destination elopement. Consider the scenery, accessibility, and weather conditions of potential locations. Keep in mind that some locations may require permits or have specific rules about when and where ceremonies can be held. Work with your planner and/or photographer to find a location that’s both beautiful and meaningful to you and your partner. And if you’re looking at getting married in one of my bucket list locations, definitely let me know!!!
Having a professional photographer to capture your elopement is a must. Research photographers who specialize in elopements and destination weddings (like yours truly!). Other vendors you may need include an officiant, a florist, a hair and makeup artist, and a caterer. Your planner or photographer can also recommend vendors they’ve worked with before and help you make arrangements.
After the ceremony, you’ll want to celebrate your marriage with a special activity or event. Consider options like a romantic dinner, a couples’ spa day, or a fun excursion to explore the local area. Your wedding planner can help you plan these activities and make reservations. Consider incorporating local customs and traditions into your celebration to make it even more memorable.
Planning a destination elopement can be a bit more complicated than planning a local wedding, but with careful research and the help of a planner or skilled photographer, it can be an unforgettable experience. Follow these steps to ensure that your destination elopement is everything you dreamed of and more.