Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Wedding Tip #9: Elopement; A No Fuss, No Muss Wedding.

So the engagement ring has been offered and enthusiastically accepted. Now the planning begins, and one commonly known fact that you will become quite familiar with, is that weddings are expensive. With traditional weddings costing, on average, $20,000, for some the price is worth paying, for others it is not.

So in honor of those couples who have successfully eloped over the years, and even those who weren’t so successful, here’s a quick guide on how to do it right.

Step One: Choose your location, know the rules.

Over the years, Las Vegas has become synonymous with elopements and quickie weddings. Sin city averages over 100,000 weddings a year, there are no blood tests required, no waiting period for licenses, and unlimited entertainment abounds. But the glitz and glamour are not for everyone. So if you’re planning an elopement in advance, and are choosing a different route, make sure to know their laws, and any restrictions they may have. Most states require 3 to 5 days for a marriage license, ruling out spur of the moment weddings. And some courthouses have a limit to the amount of people that can attend wedding ceremonies, instead having court clerks to stand witness. But if keeping the guest list to a minimum is a plus, this is a definite way to go.

Step Two: Choose your style.

Some people, when deciding against traditional wedding day ceremonies, opt for an out of the country location, or something warm and tropical. While those are more often considered destination weddings, there are plenty of chapels that offer themed elopements. Admittedly, most take place in Vegas, but you can have a Star Trek themed affair, fairytale romance, you can walk the plank at Treasure Island, or fall back on the classic Elvis-officiated ceremony. Whatever you choose, there are plenty of places where you won’t have to sacrifice personality for convenience.

Step Three: Prepare the family.

While it is true that a wedding is about celebrating your love as a couple and should reflect your wishes, consider your family’s feelings. The joy of a wedding isn’t in the planning of the day, but the actual event. The exclusion of your family could at best momentarily hurt their feeling and at worst foster resentment towards your new spouse.

Step Four: Skip town but not the reception.

But part of the allure of an elopement is the ease and intimacy it affords a couple. If you don’t want the stress of planning a wedding, just plan a party. You and your spouse-to-be can slip off and exchange wedding rings in a private ceremony, only to return home to a low-key reception with friends and family. Save money on the big day, but spare a little for a rehearsal dinner type affair. That way you get to keep your private moments private, but you don’t cut anyone out of the occasion.
Did you elope for your wedding, but still did it with style? Log onto our Facebook page  and tell us your story.

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