How did you decide between eloping or having a wedding?

posted 1 year ago in Elopement
Post # 31
865 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2016

We were going to have an intimate wedding, around 30 people then Have a reception around 70 people total…. we ended up eloping locally with our moms, and a single best friend each.. we had them all wear the same color scheme so pics looked cohesive, then did a luncheon “reception” with closest fam & friends about 20 all together….  then went to our favorite neighborhood bar where more people met up some of the older guests left after the luncheon…It was perfect, stress free, no clean up, no bridal party melt downs, fun, lively, and perfect for us and we got to do everything a typical wedding would have to offer .. vows, pictures, cake, food, booze, and dancing…AND our favorite people.. you know the ones you still see on a regular basis and not just people you see once every 5 years?!..yet..we didn’t break the bank or have any stress! Anyone considering to elope, I highly suggest it!!

eloping has evolved so much over the years you could do very simple and have an officiant meet you at your location of choice OR there are even venues now that have elopement packages! 

And we still joke around about it today cause we spent more money on our honeymoon than our whole wedding.. and it was fabulous! We didn’t start our marriage in debt, we were able to just pay for everything and be done with it 

Post # 32
12 posts

We decided to have a small wedding (20 guests) in NY – where my husband’s family lives. In September, we’re having a party for our friends (around 60-70 people) in Toronto. The party will be more casual (and hopefully less expensive).

Post # 33
9528 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

Eloping has not ‘evolved’ except in the sense that there are different reasons now for doing it. Having a very small wedding, as you did, with your mothers etc is not eloping.

These packages venues do and the articles written are merely new ways the wedding industry has of making money. I think their idea is that the word/concept elopement is attractively romantic.

Nothing  wrong wth any of the options,  a tiny intimate wedding , or an actual elopement, or a bigger do. They are all weddings. 


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jaydeeplatinum :  

Post # 34
879 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2019

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emily20 :  I struggled with this too because we already own our house and live together so marriage was literally just a legal change of status for us. 

We had the money to afford any kind of wedding but I think weddings are a complete waste of my money and my time. FH did want a small wedding but was okay with the idea of immediate family only. Our original plan was to have a courthouse ceremony and then go out to dinner afterwards. We then considered a backyard wedding. My parents really wanted a church ceremony and said they will pay for it. I had always wanted to get married in a church too so I agreed to that. So we had settled on a 30-40 person church wedding. 

It then progressed to a 60-80 person church wedding because Mother-In-Law added many extra people (she did offer to pay for them though) and many of my friends expressed interest in wanting to witness it (I had originally thought they wouldn’t be interested in traveling so far).

I am a planner and I love planning but I hated the parts where I had to interact with vendors to get things done like hair and makeup, music, photo, video, etc. The other parts of planning were kinda fun but the constant change in number of guests made it very annoying to plan well for it. For a while, I was so stressed and kept having nightmares. There were many times I considered canceling it but it was too late as we had already paid hefty deposits to vendors.

So now I’m at the point (have been for a while now) where I just want the whole thing to be over and I’m not even that excited about it anymore and am kinda dreading it and worrying about how the pictures and video will turn out and if it will all be worth it at the end. I guess I’ll just have to wait and see. I live in an LCOL area and managed to plan the wedding under $6k (started with a $5k budget) excluding honeymoon and rings but I still feel like it’s all a waste and I would have rather taken 1-2 international trips for the same cost but FH is happy and he is a major extrovert so it will be worth it to see him happy and it’s not a big deal since we can anyway afford it. 

Post # 35
61 posts
Worker bee

This was super helpful! I’ve been struggling with how to do personal vows without having to say them in front of everyone. I really like the idea of not seeing each other until you walk down the aisle, so I kind of wrote off first looks. However, if we say our vows during our first look, then it’ll almost be like getting married so problem solved. 

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dharmaandgreg :  

Post # 36
416 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2019

I wanted to elope or just go to the court house. FH said we might regret one day not having our family there, so we ultimately chose a wedding.

Post # 37
229 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2020

if I lived in/near vegas or somewhere similar I would maybe elope (then just do a big family bbq sometime afterwards) but theres a waiting period for a license here and I figure I might aswell plan something if I cant go spontanious.

Post # 38
1261 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2020

Don’t forget there are a lot of options in between eloping and a conventional wedding.

FH wanted to elope at a courthouse and have a big party after. I always wanted a small-medium wedding.

Eloping (I believe “eloping” technically means you get married alone, in secret) was out of the question for me because I want family there. I suggested a microwedding ceremony with immediate family only, then we could go to a restaurant for the “reception.” Such a microwedding could be done much more easily with no DJ, planner, or frills. 

Turns out FH wants all or nothing, so we are doing a medium wedding. When I see FH practicing dance steps, it makes me smile and really want that first dance with him. This would have been a little harder with a restaurant reception, but I have brainstormed ways to fit in a cake cutting and a first dance at the ceremony site, which would have been a little more private.

A wedding is what you make of it. My way of having a more stress free wedding is to stick to budget, spend money on things that matter, have realistic expectations, and keep everything simpler. 

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