Should you elope or should you host a standard wedding?
We all know that getting engaged is one of the most exciting moments of your life, and we are told that tying the knot in front of 100 of your closest family members and friends is the logical next step. Well I'm here to tell you that following the crowds and hosting a large wedding isn't the right call for everyone.
The idea of a wedding elopement used to include a couple sneaking off alone for a quick and secret ceremony. While this still can be the case, many wedding elopements now a days include a gorgeous set-up, stunning photos and dinner with up to 20 of your closest family members and friends. I have definitely seen this as a rising trend, and am here to tell you why following suite just may be the best decision you could make.
1. LESS STRESS
There is something about planning a large wedding that stresses out couples. Whether it is deciding who makes the guest list, figuring out how to spend less than a down payment on a house, or ensuring the day lives up to the hype, it's an extremely stressful process. (Believe it or not, getting married is one of the top 5 most stressful events in your life!)
When you elope, you are setting a different precedent, and there is less pressure associated with the day. The focus is less on the 'production' of the day, and more on the actual act of getting married. When you take out the production side, you will find the stress levels plummet. Think about it. During an elopement, you are only worrying about a few guests, as opposed to hundreds of guests, and you not going to feel as obligated to fill the day with 5 million details to 'wow' and entertain your guests.
Weddings elopements also tend to take place in a destination, as opposed to your home town. When you get away from the hustle and bustle of your crazy life, you tend to naturally relax. Hosting a very small, intimate wedding without too many details in a relaxing location is setting yourself up for a less stressful engagement.
2. LESS EXPENSIVE
To put this plain and simple: Less Guests = Less Money. Think of it this way, for every guests you invite, you are adding another chair, another invitation, another meal, another place setting, etc. When you cut the guest count to solely immediate family and a few close friends, you will be saving yourself a small fortune.
Another thing to consider is that with a wedding elopement, you typically aren't renting a traditional wedding venue, which is a HUGE cost saver. Most elopements take place in a public location and embody the beauty of the chosen location. These types of location are usually either free or very inexpensive.
When it comes to the 'celebration,' most couples that elope choose to host a dinner at a local restaurant. This means you aren't renting any banquet space or bringing on a DJ or having to rent tables and chairs. The only cost associated with the dinner is food and beverage. (And sometimes a small room rental, if you want it to be completely private). Either way, it is much cheaper than a traditional wedding venue.
3. MORE PERSONAL
When I look back at all the large weddings I have planned, I can't help but remember the amount of time each couple spent greeting guests, and making their way around the room saying 'It's so nice to see you' and 'thanks for coming.' I am also always shocked by the number of guests one of the newly weds has never met. From an outsiders perspective, it sometimes seems as if the whole day is spent greeting guests, instead of really enjoying the day.
For this reason, many couples seem to 'skip' talking to their immediate family and closest friends because they are making sure everyone they don't see on a regular basis feels appreciated.
With that being said, I completely understand WHY this happens, and many couples love it, but there is something to be said for a small elopement. By only surrounding yourself with your immediate family and friends, you are able to really relax and enjoy the moment. You will also get to interact with both your fiancé and 'guests' much more during an elopement that you would during a large wedding, making the day feel much more personal.
4. YOU CAN SPLURGE
As I already mentioned, elopements are MUCH cheaper than traditional wedding, and by spending quite a bit less money, you are able to splurge on a few things that mean a lot to you. For example, maybe you choose an exotic location, or splurge on a high end dinner, or bring in a killer photographer. Or maybe you create a luxurious ceremony backdrop or bring on a planner to coordinate the entire experience. Regardless of what it is, you are able to put a little bit more money toward the things that really matter to you, without completely breaking the bank.
Thinking of splurging on a planner? Check out out elopement packages here.
5. LOCATION. LOCATION. LOCATION.
Because you don't need to worry about your wedding venue being convenient for all of your guests, you have a never ending list of elopement locations to choose from. Have you always wanted to visit Italy? Are you having a reoccurring dream of the white sand sand beaches of Aruba? Or are you itching to experience the jungles of Costa Rica? This is the perfect time to know one of the places off of your bucket list!
In the meantime check out a few of our favorite elopements to date:
Kate + Matt: Cuvier Park in La Jolla
Ashley + Jeremy: Hilo, Hawaii