Is Eloping for you?
Its the biggest wedding trend right now: eloping. Ditching the formalities and getting married. But it's not for everyone and eloping is definitely very glorified and romanticised, but it is SPECIAL. We discuss a few of the pros and cons on eloping vs. having a wedding. And by eloping, we mean a true elopement, just you and your spouse and your witness/officiant/photographer. (intimate weddings win it all)
Cost - If you're trying to save costs and money on your wedding, eloping is definitely in your favor. Most brides that have a more formal and more elaborate elopement will spend up to and around $6,000, but you can spend as little as $200 if you go and get your marriage certificate from your local county/courthouse and celebrate with a nice dinner afterwards. The average cost of Weddings in the US with an average of 150 guests is $35,000... That's about half of your combined income for a year..
Intimate - There are very little things more special than sharing your wedding day WITH your spouse. Duh, it's your wedding day! But most couples on their wedding day, hardly spend much time together in between mingling with guests and family and dancing etc. Elopements mean the day is entirely yours from beginning to end. You have the undivided attention of your new spouse, you can share your vows and be as vulnerable and honest as you want, and you can choose to do whatever you'd like with your day. Intimate elopements are an introverts paradise but are also the perfect way for an extrovert to have all the fun they want.
Fun - There's a little bit of internal rebellion that you might feel with eloping - it's actually SO fun. You can wear whatever you want, choose whatever location you want, heck you can run away to Vegas and elope and spend the rest of the night playing slots and boozing it up on the strip. Or spend it hiking to a crazy mountain top just to saw your vows and spend the rest of the evening snuggling up in a cabin. Elopements are kind of crazy and most of your family might think you're a little rebellious and that makes for a very fun and adrenaline filled time.
Prioritise Investments: If you have your dream dress that costs $3000, chances are, if you're eloping, you can afford to buy that dress because you won't have the insanely high costs of a wedding to also factor in. You can also invest much more into a photographer and videographer to capture those moments. You can choose what is important to spend money on for your elopement, whereas having a wedding means making sacrifices just to cover the costs of having guests and a venue (lets not even talk about the cost of catering).
Stress free - For the most part, elopements are so stress free. You don't need to think about all the crazy things you need to get organised, or if you're planner is going to bail on you the day of your wedding (they won't!) or if your family from out of town will make it on time! Elopements are so carefree you'll probably constantly feel like you've forgotten something.
Family: Now there aren't that many cons with eloping, but not having family or friends to celebrate with you is a pretty big one, and clearly enough to make most people opt out. Most brides who have eloped will usually tell you that as much as they loved their elopement, and would never change their decision if they went back in time, that is was still hard to not have your family with you. Although you can still celebrate with them at a later time, it's so special to have all of those moments with your family and friends to witness, the tears, the hugs, the photos. And it might be the only time you get to have all of your families in the same place at the same time.
Time: Elopements happen in the blink of an eye. They go SO quickly, and before you know it you're married and your "wedding" is over. A wedding is usually a weeklong event, with rehearsal dinners, set up, partying at the reception, breakfast after the wedding with family, it doesn't feel like it is over in a flash. Most elopements with portraits and even some quirky in between moments like a fun meal or a hike through a forest don't take much more than 3 hours. And with all of that emotion and adrenaline, 3 hours can feel like 3 minutes.
Details: If you're a details kind of person, then you should probably have a wedding. Weddings are jam packed with special details like the amazing wall your father helped your build for your photo booth backdrop, or the doughnut table you helped decorate, the peach linen you used for the table-scapes and the overwhelming amount of foliage and flowers you have decorating your venue. Details are what makes a wedding unique and elopements just don't have that same complexity of detail that so many people love.
Memories: Weddings are basically a giant party. If you're an outgoing and sociable person, you would probably LOVE hosting a wedding. You create so many memories with friends and family about the way your grandma and grandpa were dancing together or how your brother smashed cake in his wife's face etc. Weddings make family memories, and chances are your entire family are going to appreciate those memories as much, if not more than you will. It might be your grandmas last chance to boogie with you on the dancefloor and she'll probably hang that wedding photo of you above her mantle piece for the rest of her life.
Gifts: Okay lets be honest here. "Its not about the presents or gifts", but when you hear how much a couple gets gifted on their wedding day, sometimes it's enough to cover the entire cost of their wedding if not more. Eloping means you go into marriage with very little gifts or none at all. Which can also make moving into a new home together tricky. Eloping means you have to start from scratch and buy yourself all the necessities for your home, but a wedding usually means a registry that you can set up to ask people to help you start your life with those things. The average cash gift amount is $160 per couple. But also note, sometimes your guests will shell out hundreds if not thousands to attend your wedding, so don't be offended if you don't receive much.
Attention: You will likely have everything done for you, never go hungry, have drinks handed to you, have people fixing your clothes for you, people will freak out over anything that you do because it's "your day", so if you love attention, you need a wedding. Your wedding means people will do anything to make sure you have a good day, and this might be the only day you get where people will treat you quite like royalty, so if you have the chance, take it up.
Planning - Weddings can take months and years to plan, especially if you don't have a planner. That means a lot of time, and stress, emailing and decisions to make about things you need to have for the day. If you're planning a wedding out of your own state that can make it even harder. If you do decide to have a wedding, hire a planner. Your life will be so much easier, and they are worth the investment and know the best vendors to hire for you.
Exhausting - This ties in to everything else we've spoken about for weddings. You'll probably want to fall asleep by the time you say "I do", so don't be surprised if your adrenaline crash co-insides with utter exhaustion. You usually NEED a honeymoon by the time your wedding is over to recover from how socially and mentally draining it was to host 150+ guests from around the world.
OUR OPINION: We've figured out the perfect way to have both (crispy AND soft taco's amirite?). Ever seen The Office? If yes, we're immediately friends; if no, go and watch it now. Jim & Pam do it right. Make your legal ceremony private: share your intimate vows together privately in a place YOU want, the way you want and make it epic and beautiful. Share those moments intimately with your spouse, and celebrate the week later by doing a unity ceremony (exchanging of the rings, tying of the hands, sand pouring) and still share a special letter with each other. Your wedding day isn't less special because you're already legally married (heck, if you really don't want to tell people, keep it a secret until the end of the night). This means you can keep your wedding a little more casual because you've already had the wedding of your dreams; pizza is okay, so is a picnic style in your backyard; meaning you can cut costs, still have everyone you love by you while you do your first dance, cut your cake etc. But you still get to share those intimate moments with everyone.