Post # 1
I have a question and I just wanted to get some outside input. My FI and I were planning on getting married in June, 2015. I’m planning on taking his last name after we get married (this is something that’s really important to me) However, my passport, driver’s licence, credit card all expires this year. We’re planning on doing an out of country trip prior to getting married so I’ll need to renew my passport prior to then and I drive so I’ll need to also renew my driver’s licence. I was thinking that it seems so silly to pay now and again June 2015 (and I would have to pay the full renewal fees even though it’s just a name change) My friend jokingly (or not so jokingly) suggested that we should just elope this year at the courthouse. That way, I would only have to pay once to renew everything now with my new last name. I laughed at first, then realized this may not actually be that bad of an idea.
Besides saving a ton of money, there are other aspects to this idea that really appeal to me. I like the idea of my partner and I (and required witnesses) getting married alone. Just the two of us celebrating our love. I brought the idea up with my FI and asked him to think about it. He actually agrees that it’s a really good idea.
I have a few questions/worries. We’re not religious so going about it this way won’t be an issue (in that regard) We are not the type of people that would keep this from family/friends. I would personally feel really weird misleading everyone like that. So that also won’t be an issue. The plan all along has been to have a very low key, outdoor BBQ style wedding and if we decided to go this route, I would still want that special day. We would still want to have our celebration June 2015. I would still like to wear a flowy white dress and walk down the aisle. We would still do a vow exchange on that day and have a celebration with everyone afterwards. We would wait until that day to place rings on each other’s fingers and probably use that day as our anniversary as well. We’ve always said all along that we didn’t want any wedding presents so if we had a celebration after we were already married, I feel like our guests definitely wouldn’t feel obligated to get us anything.
While going this way will save me a few hundred dollars, I find it’s more about just having that little celebration just the two of us this year. I don’t feel like it would take anything away from our actual day as we would probably have someone still “bless our marriage” (is that the right thing to say?) June 2015.
Has anyone done this or heard of anyone that has done this? How was the actual “wedding” day where they celebrated with family/friends? Did you find the fact they were already married took away from it?
Thanks for any input or opinions!
Post # 5
@raylight: That sounds sweet to me 🙂 I’m sure your family/friends will appreciate that you’re honest about it too. I’ve never been to a wedding in those circumstances, but my friend’s brother did something similar. Got legally married before the end of the year to save on taxes and help the wife get healthcare since she was about to finish grad school. Then, they had the wedding celebration the following summer. Also, I’m having an international destination wedding, so I’ll be doing the legal part either before or after. We’ll do rings at the ceremony with our family and friends and consider that day our anniversary as well
Post # 6
I’m not a fan of the redo ceremonies. You’re already married and a wife at that point, not a bride. Why not just throw a big celebration a few weeks after your elopement?
Also, you can get a name change on a passport for free for one year after a marriage- just make sure you keep an extra photo to send in. I didn’t so I’m going to have to pay a few more bucks to get a different picture (thank god, because the other was TERRIBLE).
Post # 7
If you want to elope, then elope.
However, I think I’d be a bit miffed as a guest if you said “it was just more convenient and saved me a few hundred to do it earlier.” Instead I would tell them you wanted to elope.
Post # 8
If your plan all along was to have a very low-key wedding, is there a reason you can’t do everything this year?
Post # 9
My best friend did something similar, but for a different reason. She got married in the courthouse in Kenya to her Kenyan husband. They had the big wedding a year later, also in Kenya, that way those of us who went to the wedding had approximately 2 years to save up to travel there. Personally, I didn’t find it odd at all knowing that they had been married for a year but that we were still having a wedding.
Post # 10
- Wedding: June 2015 - Malibou Lake Mountain Club
interesting. ive been thinking the same thing! Wonder what the bees will say
Post # 11
We got married in a private ceremony at the courthouse, and later on threw one party for our immediate family and another one for our friends. Neither of the parties felt like a wedding for us, the magic had already happened. We didn’t have any sort of fake ceremony. It was the way we wanted it, and I wouldn’t change a thing.
However, I’ve been a guest to a party after a private ceremony, and then it didn’t take anything away from it. I think I was just as happy and excited for the couple as I would have been on their actual wedding day.
Could you just move your wedding date to this year?
Post # 12
I don’t know anyone has done this and the reason seems a bit weird unless the money for passport and license renewal is that big of a deal.
Post # 13
@raylight: I cannot tell but is the motivation to just be able to travel in a newly married name for the out of country trip? Or to save a couple hunderd dollars?
I do know of a few couples who had a big celebration party 1-2 years after the wedding date. There were no vows exchanged though.
I do know one couple who eloped to Bora Bora secretly (they were trying to avoid big Asian wedding pressure by their families), only to find out it was NOT actually legally recognized here in the US! The families ended up finding out and making them to put on a full wedding excctly one year later. We did not go to that even though we got a lovely invitation. We already gave them a wedding gift for the Bora Bora wedding when they returned and took them out to dinner when they returned. We did not go to the year later wedding (even though that was the legal one). They felt Bora Bora was their true anniversary date.
Post # 14
If you had a reception or vow renewal later, that’s one thing, but having an actual wedding ceremony afterward and using the marriage wording just seems like trying to have your cake and eat it too. You either get married when you elope, or you get married at your wedding ceremony. Not both.
If you want to have a wedding, why not just have the wedding you can afford now? I promise, unless someone is having to travel many hours or you don’t make it clear there won’t be a meal, NO ONE is going to mind if you just do cake and punch in a park pavilion/the VFW. In fact, despite what the bridal magazines try to say, that’s still very much the norm in some places. And it doesn’t really take any time at all to plan.
If you don’t want to have a wedding now, just elope then have a reception, rather than acting like you haven’t already been married awhile.
Post # 15
I wouldn’t personally elope just to save myself some money on renewing my passport but I say to each their own. I don’t have a problem with people having a ceremony and reception later, as long as people know you already got married. It’s not a wedding now, more of a celebration and renewal.
Post # 16
Thanks everyone! We’ve decided to stick to our original plan and have our small wedding next year! I appreciate all the responses 🙂