There are two sorts of romantics.. those who love, and those who love the adventure of loving
Is it For You?
Whether to marry in the UK or abroad is a big decision and one that only you can make.
Hopefully by answering a few frequently asked questions we can help you come to a conclusion quickly. Then you can get on with the exciting bit - planning your day!
Why get married abroad?
Romantic and unique
Going away means you will be starting married life somewhere a little bit different and breathtakingly beautiful.
Luxury wedding at half the price
Weddings abroad are a fraction of the equivalent here, which means you can have that wedding of your dreams without the price tag!
You will be able to indulge and party with a close group of family and friends as opposed to a sprawling crowd.
"Our guests travelled many miles to be at our wedding and that's why it was such a perfect day, we were able to celebrate it with the people that meant the most to us". Mel & Aaron - Australia - read full story.
Stress free and fun
The traditional British wedding with all its rules and etiquette can be so overwhelming! A wedding overseas makes everything just a bit more informal.
And because all the party are in one place, you don't have the worry of who’s arriving and when. No fretting about traffic jams on the M1 holding up the best man.
Well we can't promise, but a wedding abroad certainly improves your chances of great weather.
Can we choose where we get married?
In most destinations you can opt to have either a civil or religious ceremony at any approved spot – be it church, gardens, hotels or the beach.
Also, if you're wedded (no pun intended) to exchanging your vows with the sand between your toes, then marrying abroad is currently your only option.
In England and Wales it isn’t possible to legally wed on our beautiful beaches (legal marriage ceremonies have to take place at a licensed civil venue, registry office, or religious building).
You can marry on the beach in Scotland – although we wouldn’t like to guarantee the weather would be as good as Mauritius!
How much does a wedding abroad cost?
Very little compared to the UK!
The average cost of a wedding abroad is £6,000 compared to over £20,000 here. Longer haul destinations, although more expensive to get to, tend to have lower cost of living so weddings are very good value.
Cheaper doesn’t mean settling for less. You can still have an exclusive, bespoke wedding for a fraction of what it would cost in the UK.
There are venues to suit every budget from £500 to £50,000, so it really is up to you.
And because the celebrations usually last for a good day or two you definitely get your money’s worth and more memories than you can count.
What about the language & currency differences?
You'd holiday there, so why not marry there?!
Seriously, if you do decide to marry in a non-English speaking country, there’s a raft of travel agents and wedding planners available to help bridge any cultural differences (contacts are in our Where in the World? section).
Once in the country, you'll find that any cultural differences melt away – there’s nothing anyone likes more than a good wedding!
In terms of currency, exchange rates and deposits, if you are booking through a UK travel agent or planner, they can help and advise on how to make the most of your money.
What about taking all our friends and family?
The deciding factor..
Getting married abroad forces you to really think about who you want at your wedding. It usually means inviting less guests, but there are plenty of ways to keep everyone happy and feeling a part of your special day.
Check out our top tips for dealing with the guest list headache in our Things To Think About section.
If you do want hundreds to witness your vows, or if your party includes ageing grandparents or others who might struggle to fly, then a wedding here at home might possibly be the happier choice.
Isn't it a big ask of guests to pay so much to come to our wedding?
You’d be surprised!
After the initial shock that you’re not marrying in the village church, your nearest and dearest will want to be at your wedding no matter what.
Most guests will immediately think of tying it into a holiday – which is why it's important to give as much notice as you can.
Find out how best to manage this in our Things to Think About section.
“If you’re asking guests to travel miles and spend a lot of money be prepared that some may not be able to come. For those that can, try to make it an event over a few days - we decided to make it a wedding week rather than a day for our 40 guests. It was perfect - intimate but lively!"
Mel & Aaron - Australia - read full story
What if we want a quick wedding abroad?
A wedding abroad is an ideal solution if you want to slip under the radar. Most countries require two witnesses but they can usually be recruited on arrival.
In some countries, it is perfectly legal to marry on the day you get there – our Where in the World? section will give you some pointers.
Can we plan two years ahead?
If you are planning on booking your wedding more than 18 months in advance, you’re unlikely to be able to book overseas registrars. Don’t be put off though. Find out how early you can book him or her and get in as soon as you can.
And when it comes to booking a venue, the earlier the better. Popular places either get booked up quickly or only accept a minimum number of weddings a year.
Isn't getting married abroad a bit naff?!
Not any more!
In the past, getting married abroad suggested a conveyor belt packaged wedding in a cheap resort. Going abroad today means you have more flexibility to find a destination and create a ceremony that epitomises you as a couple.
There are some truly stunning hotels offering exclusive, top-end weddings. So it can be custom-made to suit you and your tastes.
I want to be in total control of my wedding planning..
Then a wedding abroad will either totally stress you out or change you for the better!
Most of the arrangements for a wedding abroad have to be done remotely – by you via email or a third party that you have hired.
Some couples are able to squeeze in one visit to the country to check out venues and co-ordinators but, for many, this simply isn’t logistically or financially possible.
So if you’re a girl who likes to be across every little detail in advance, this might prove too much!