2 weddings in 2 countries

posted 3 years ago in Intercultural
Post # 2
1201 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: A very pretty church.

We are planning two weddings. One in the UK, one in Oz, it’s the best of a bad situation, one of those things that comes of my being born and brought up on the opposite side of the world to most of my extended family. We’re from very different cultural traditions, so from that perspective it simplifies things, a Church of England ceremony there, and a traditional Hindu wedding in Australia.

The way I see it, the Hindu wedding is for our Australian friends, and extended families that live in the southern hemisphere and it allows us to stay true to his and my FILs culture.

The ceremony in England will still have the key players in our families (parents, siblings), but it will be mostly my family. That’s okay, most of them couldn’t come to the Australian wedding (eg. my Grandmothers are too frail to travel, financial constraints) so that’s just life. I feel very lucky to be in the position where this is possible. It avoids the heartbreak of choosing between our families and cultural backgrounds. Not to mention avoiding that awkward ‘interfaith’ ceremony mashup which rarely holds up (I feel) and might have left at least one family quite unhappy.

I come to this from quite an unusual perspective I guess, weddings aren’t just for the two people (IMO), they’re for the families concerned as well. If we weren’t doing this we’d just elope and do things on a really small scale, a tempting thought, but I wouldn’t want to upset his family, they will be my family soon.

My fiance has always been strange about my family, not thinking they like him or accept him (the interracial aspect etc). I can’t wait to fill up our family church and have them all welcome him into our family, it’ll be a little overwhelming in some ways, but really special as well.

Post # 3
405 posts
Helper bee

Sorry, but you only get one wedding.  Invite who you want to come, and if some can’t make it, then they can’t make it.  You can also live stream the ceremony to those that are far away and can’t come.

Post # 4
141 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

My fiance is Polish, I’m American. We faced a lot of pressure from both families to have the wedding in our respective hometowns, or to have two separate weddings. The former option we thought unfair, and the latter too much hassle. In the end we tried to choose a destination “in the middle” that would be easier for everyone to reach, so we’re getting married in Dublin, Ireland. It’s still not an easy option, but for multinational couples there really isn’t an easy option when it comes to weddings, aside from eloping, and this is what worked for us. Good luck to you!

Post # 5
2731 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2014 - Disney



I am having 2 ceremonies, 1 reception. The first was for legal purposes due to my medical situation. We had already put thousands down on a wedding, and our families knew upfront the situation. Everyone is over joyed to come to our “celebration wedding” in october :).

doeydo:  Some would beg to differ. I put several thousands down on a wedding for my husband and I. I lost my job, and I have health problems that are extremely expensive. One of the medications I take costs more in one year than many new cars without insurance, my other medications total about half that cost on top of it, and this doesnt even include the countless tests or doctor visits I have annually. My husband and I decided to get married because without insurance we couldnt cover thousands in medical costs a month, or me being denied coverage when I was employed again. We notified our family, and shockingly all of them figured we would have a civil ceremony first due to us having our wedding out of state  and are fine with this arrangement. Everyone was 100% supportive of how this is going down, and we’ve titled the wedding in October our “Celebration Wedding” to celebrate our marraige with our families in a once in a life time opportunity to gather them together. This chance will never happen again since our families are dispersed across the United States and mine in particular has a tendency to be reclusive. My best friend got married with a celebration wedding months later for similair reasons, as did another friend of mine. I think it depends on the reasoning and how its done. In the OP’s case its probably easier and cheaper for her guests to do 2 ceremonies and receptions one in each country. I think its fine in this situation, in health situations, in military situations, etc.

Post # 6
141 posts
Blushing bee

doeydo:  Since when? Actually, most cross-cultural couples I know have multiple celebrations. Only one is legally binding, of course, but there’s no reason that people with family around the world can’t participate. Nobody is being deceived. This is actually extremely normal for South Asian couples–especially when one partner is S. Asian and the other is from a Western background. Who doesn’t like having more chances to party with loved ones?

Post # 7
1040 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2014

I’m Irish and my FI is originally from India (although his immediate family currently live in Ireland). Just to complicate things further, we live in Australia. We’d initially planned to have one wedding in Ireland and a reception in India for his extended family. We’ve ended up with two weddings, with the one in India 6 days after the Irish one. This was certainly not out of any desire to be greedy, FI didn’t want a second wedding but we agreed to make his father happy. 


The distance between France and Australia is huge and it’s so expensive in terms of both time and money to travel between the two. The fairest thing is to have two weddings, however a destination wedding somewhere in the middle might be a compromise if you don’t mind that not everyone will be able to travel – at least that way you’re not discriminating against one side. 


I do advise that if your FI wants both an Australian and a French wedding, put him to work doing most of the leg work for the French one – he’ll know the country better and be better able to communicate with vendors. 

Post # 8
405 posts
Helper bee

Since always.  Just because some people have a travelling series of “weddings” does not make them right.

Post # 9
743 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2014 - Our Backyard/Steakhouse

I agree with doeydo:  

You can only get married once.  Any second ‘ceremony’ is simply an act, and a recreation of something that’s already happened.  Get married, own it, and then have a celebration of your marriage in the second location.

dewingedpixie:  I’m sorry to hear about your health issues and glad your FI has great medical coverage.  However, like your situation or military families etc.  You made the decision to get married in order to receive certain benefits.  That doesn’t mean you are any less married than anyone else.  You did what you did because it was what you had to do…I get it.  But as an adult, you don’t then get to have another ‘wedding’.  You are already wed.  Awesome idea to have a celebration of your marriage (which I believe is what you’re doing)…but to invite your guests to a ‘wedding’ isn’t right since it isn’t what they will be witnessing.  At that point, what they are witnessing is simply a reenactment.

Post # 10
39 posts
  • Wedding: September 2014

I’m a dual citizen (US and Argentina) while my fiancé is from the US.  We will be having our ceremony and reception in the US where my American side of the family and all of his family will attend. We’ll then have only a reception in Argentina with my friends and family when we go visit for Christmas.  I would love to have all my family in one place for the wedding, but know that the trip is very expensive so very few would be able to travel.  I felt having the second reception to celebrate our marriage was a decent compromise.

Post # 11
88 posts
Worker bee

Maybe that’s the thought process in most American cultures but different countries; different cultures. Some weddings go on for days. I had two different weddings and it absolutely had nothing about being greedy. Of course leave it to some people to squeeze out what they can to loot in gifts and make others look bad. Making assumptions to a very innocent question is sad. I chose two because our families could not travel due to expenses and medical reasons. So it was easier for us and we used our second wedding as a great reason to travel a tad further for a great honeymoon destination that we normally wouldn’t have done for any old vacation. Worked out great. 

Post # 12
8677 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2012

Somebody woke up on the intolerant side of the bed.

Post # 13
52 posts
Worker bee

doeydo:  lol, how’s the weather up there on your horse?

We got married in America last week and a small number of his family were able to come from the UK. In July, we are having a reception over there and every day we are told how excited people from both continents are. We are not getting “remarried” in the UK, but I can guarantee every single person would love to see it happen. Money, work, age, and other factors prevented people from traveling, so we are coming to them. 

If that’s “wrong,” then I’d hate to be stuck talking to you at a party. 

Post # 14
320 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: March 2015

I went to a wedding in India, and the couple will have another in California.  They are having two because they each have large families and that plane ticket was $1500, so 90% of their family and friends could not afford to go.    

Have as many weddings as you want, do whatever makes you happy.  If having everyone there is important and it’s not possible to get them all on the same side of the world, then have two weddings. It’s as meaningful as you make it.  Don’t let the grumps on here steal your joy!  


Post # 15
141 posts
Blushing bee

doeydo:  Since ALWAYS?!! I’ll be sure to tell all four sets of great-grandparents’ spirits that they should have just “owned it” and had just one wedding instead of multiple ones around India. Have you never met anyone from a cultural tradition that’s not yours? My God. Isn’t the point of sites like this coming across people who have done things differently and seeing that other long-standing practices might make more sense for your particular relationship/family/geographic situation than what is in your immediate community?

OP, moving on from the very startling cultural intolerance that randomly appeared on this innocuous thread: my friends who had weddings in two countries were really happy with their decisions. But I would talk to all the far-flung relatives to see what they’re thinking. You might be surprised to find that many think they can make the travel possible. My very good friends had a typical Western wedding in the U.S. and then two Hindu ceremonies in India. I ended up being able to go to all three, and it was wonderful; others from the bridal party and many close relatives were able to as well. If key people can make the trip, you may decide that the intimate ceremony of your dreams is possible after all. And, if not, play up the richness that you get marrying someone from a differnet background from you. An Australian wedding and a French wedding have very different traditions, and you get a chance to celebrate both families in meaningful ways if you have an event geared to each instead of trying to do a mish-mash that is trying to be all things to all people.

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