To Elope or Not to Elope
Is the idea of a big wedding just not your thing? Perhaps super spontaneous types always looking for an unconventional adventure? Make sure to have a long hard think about whether its the right decision for you. Learn what to keep in mind when planning an elopement now.
The Pros and Cons
✓ Pro: It’s Far Less Expensive Avoid the costs of having a massive reception with a ton of guests, large venue, decorations for a large space, and other related costs.
✘ Con: Potential Hurt Feelings In an ideal world, people will be happy to let you do your own thing; but unfortunately, the real world isn’t that easy. You may have to deal with some annoyed friends and family.
✓ Pro: You Call the Shots Elopement puts you and your partner back in control. You can make your own decisions without family and friends getting involved.
✘ Con: Fewer Gifts If you want to receive amazing and touching gifts from family; it’s likely it won’t be as plentiful if you choose to elope.
✓ Pro: The World is Yours Rent a little cottage in the country or exchange vows on a beach; the possibilities are endless.
✘ Con: Less Extravagance Smaller weddings are often less glamorous affairs due to unorthodox locations and fewer attendees. If fancy soirees are a passion of yours, an elopement might not be the best option for you.
✓ Pro: Only VIPs are Present If you do decide to bring a few friends and family, they are going to be the ones who matter most to you and your spouse.
✘ Con: You’re Dependent on the Photographer With the advent of high-quality cameras on smartphones, you can build a great photo album just from photos that friends and family take.
✓ Pro: Privacy It can be hard to truly share your special moment with 200 people watching you. With an elopement, you can focus more on your special moment.
✘ Con: Fewer Witnesses to Share the Memories With fewer people, there will be less people to reminisce with about your amazing day. Everyone can see the video but they will never truly know how amazing your day was.
Questions before you elope
What’s motivating your decision?
- Some brides dream of having the day where they walk down the aisle with all eyes on them, but not all women are like that.
- However, some people may let family frustrations or arguments about wedding planning push them into elopement.
- Take a step back and ask yourself if you really want to elope or if the stress of wedding planning is influencing your decision.
What does your partner want?
- It’s about arriving at a mutual decision with your partner and finding some middle ground. It’s the type of scenario where you shouldn’t be making unilateral decision.
- Always ask your future partner where they stand on a big wedding vs. eloping and make the decision together. Have you considered all the options?
- It doesn’t have to be all or nothing and more modest ceremonies could suit you.
- Perhaps you could have an intimate ceremony and invite more friends and family to pick up the party later that night.
Is there a chance you’ll regret your decision?
- Facing friends and family after the wedding and honeymoon may be something with which you’re uncomfortable.
- If you’re unsure about your decision to elope, take a weekend away to clear your mind of all the wedding talk.
- Whatever path you choose, you want to be sure you made the right decision.
From engaged to eloped: do’s and don’ts
If you’ve decided to go for it, well done you! Here’s what to keep in mind for a perfect elopement.
Do: Take care of all the legal details Find out if you need a license and how long everything will take. You may need to get a city hall appointment and there may also be a requirement for witnesses.
Don’t: Downplay your elopement Just because you’re eloping that doesn’t mean the day is any less special. It’s still your wedding and there is every reason to be excited and celebrate just as much.
Do: Hire a local planner, photographer, and videographer You shouldn’t be completely on your own. Hire wedding professionals locally to help you with your day.
Don’t: Be afraid to ask vendors for special pricing Because your wedding is a smaller scale with shorter time commitments, many vendors will offer special rates for elopements.
Do: Send marriage announcements A marriage announcement is the perfect way to let people know what came of your engagement. It’s good to let friends and family know you eloped as they might be expecting an invitation. You can also showcase intimate photos of your special day on the announcement!
Don’t: Forget the budget Even if it’s just the two of you, the expenses can still quickly get out of hand. It’s still important to sit down and discuss where money is being spent. Spend enough to have an amazing day but be a small but sensible.
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