By Dave Westfall
So, you have decided that you might want to elope – what next? One of the most common questions we get asked is ‘how to elope’. There are many couples out there who really love the idea of eloping with their partner, but are at a loss when it comes to actually doing anything about it. It seems like something really simple, especially since the movies always seem to portray elopement as nothing more than deciding to get married, running off (usually to Las Vegas) and tying the knot! However, in reality there is a little bit more involved and while elopement does take less planning than a traditional wedding there is some preparation required. To help you get on the right track we’ve put together a basic step by step guide that explains How To Elope.
How To Elope
- Examine Your Decision To Elope This first step might come as something of a surprise, but it is an important one. The first step is to examine your decision to elope and make sure that it is the right decision. This may seem at odds with the whole concept of a spontaneous elopement, but marriage is a big step and you need to start out on the right foot. Think about why you are choosing to elope and ask if these are valid reasons. Think about which family members might be upset with your decision and ask yourself if you are ready to deal with that. Once you are sure that you are making the right choice and elopement is not something you will come to regret it is time to move on to step number 2!
- Choosing Where To Elope Once you have made the decision to elope you will need to think about where to elope. There are many different choices and your final destination will depend on a number of things including your personal taste, budget and time. Some destinations have waiting periods while others can offer same day elopements. It may be that you do not actually want to travel too far, in which case you can still elope in your home state, but if you do feel like combining your elopement with a honeymoon then we can offer plenty of advice regarding elopement destinations all over the United States and the rest of the world. Once you have decided on a location you can use our listings to find the best venues, officiants and additional wedding services.
- Arrange Your Marriage License Once you have made a decision about where to elope, you will need to arrange for a marriage license in the appropriate location. In some cases, out of state couples will need to secure the license in the exact county in which they will be getting married while others can obtain a statewide license. It is important to fully research the marriage regulations thoroughly to make sure that there are no unnecessary snags. This is especially important if you are choosing to elope outside the United States. We do provide basic information on each of our listings pages, but it is worth ensuring that these are up to date.
- Make it a Date! Once you know the requirements of obtaining your marriage license you can finalize a wedding date and book your elopement ceremony venue, transportation and lodging accommodations, as well as the other services you require.
- Telling Your Friends & Family Once you have all of your arrangements in place it is time for the step that many couples dread – telling everyone that you are eloping! Although most couples find that their family is excited and supportive, there are some who find that their friends and family are a little bit put out that they cannot come to the wedding. This is not something that you should let put a dampener on your day; if you explain your reasons for wanting to elope, they will come around in the end.
- Get Married! Once everything else is taken care of all that is left is to get to the ceremony and tie the knot!
This is by no means a comprehensive guide as there are a lot of little individual details you might want to consider, but hopefully it has given you a working outline on which you can build your own elopement plans. Stay tuned to WhereToElope.com for more advice about how to elope.
Do you have any tips to share with other couples wondering How To Elope?