There’s something deeply romantic about couples who elope. They have made a conscious decision to avoid spiralling costs and months of planning, and want to focus solely on their commitment together. It can be a beautiful experience, but there are mistakes to be made. So if you’re planning to go it alone, make sure you tread carefully.
Give it some serious thought
There are a few key issues to address before you pack your bags and head to the chapel. Firstly, what are your reasons for eloping? Are you committed enough to spending the rest of your lives together? Don’t rush in to a last-minute marriage only to wake up in the morning and wonder what you have done.
Secondly, you need to be aware that although running away together to tie the knot is romantic, it’s bound to upset friends and family who are going to miss the important event – so you need to be prepared for that.
There are two schools of thought regarding eloping: either keep it a secret and tell family members face-to-face on your return, or tell a few close family members beforehand that you want to keep it between you and your sweetheart. Be sensitive to their feelings and explain your reasons for eloping clearly, and promise to have a second celebration when you return.
If you want to compromise, then perhaps elope with a select few in tow. Invite a handful of friends and family to a foreign destination and have an intimate beach wedding – many hotels offer amazing wedding packages.
What will you need?
- Marriage license – two weeks before marriage
- ID and social security number
- Copy of your birth certificate – this may have to be translated if you are not a citizen to the country
- Documentation proving that any previous marriages are over
- Leave enough time between your flights and the marriage – delays often occur when travelling
- Don’t get married on a whim! Give it some serious thoughtPlan your honeymoon before you leave
- Film the wedding – therefore friends and families can enjoy the event after you have returned
Take lots of photos and create a photo album of your memories to share when you get home
Where should you go?
Lots of people elope to Las Vegas – a destination brimming with wedding chapels and churches which take on many different guises. It’s a fun location which has great access to perfect honeymoon destinations. There are plenty of other places where you can marry should you require something with a little more class – take a look at the romantic and honeymoon hotels on the Great Hotels of the World website for ideas.