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  • Writer's pictureEmmaleen Muldoon

Should I elope? Advice from someone who did.

Updated: Mar 6, 2021

With Princess Beatrice eloping to marry her Italian Property developer, in what is probably the most intimate style Royal Wedding we have seen for years. I ask, what will you do with your 2020 wedding?

It’s not a situation that any bride could have ever imagined when planning their 2020 wedding. With the world going in and out of lockdowns and restrictions placed on social gatherings and travel it isn’t the ideal time to have your dream wedding.

So what to do? Do you continue on the aisle path or delay for an undetermined period of time. The real options are;-

  1. Go ahead anyway, elope or have a small ceremony.

  2. Postpone the wedding until next year

  3. Have a private wedding and then book a celebration for next year.

It isn't an easy decision to make and the answer will vary depending on your own personal circumstances and wishes. With Princess Beatrice, it has been a difficult time with the murkiness surrounding her father and then the onset of COVID-19 it seemed her fairytale wedding was drifting out of sight. She could have waited for it all to pass but with the situation surrounding her father it seems that may be a long time before it is all settles down.

The biggest question you have to ask yourself is; do you want to be married now? That’s the question I had to ask myself when we were planning our wedding. With our wedding we had certain visa restrictions and so if we waited a year to plan and save for a big day it would have meant living apart for an undetermined amount of time so that helped make the decision. But ultimately we did just want to get married, I couldn’t wait and seven years on I don’t regret our decision. I really wanted the traditional big wedding but I what I learnt was that I wanted to get married more. It wasn’t easy breaking away from that dream image I had in my mind and in the end we did decide to have a wedding blessing the following year. But as I look back at my two special days, my eloped wedding was more than could have ever dreamed and I loved it more than the blessing.

What I learnt from eloping.

  • It can still cost a lot of money, we choose to get married in Central Park as we could walk there from our apartment and we had found a private remote place that we liked. We also then had great backdrops for photos and a really nice restaurant fro our wedding dinner in walking distance. We invited parents and siblings so we weren’t truly alone. I also wore a traditional style wedding dress and we had a wedding photographer. This was New York City and so we prices were higher than otter places and we could get married anywhere, as in the state it is the person who is licensed, not the venue, I know that different rules apply in England.

  • It can make a wedding even more emotional. Being away from family and friends whilst getting married is sad but then it also added to the romance and intensity in a way and so emotions were heightened.

  • Getting a good photographer is important. With no one elsewhere to take photos you want to make sure you have some memories of your day that are not a selfie!

  • Tell everyone in advance that this is your plan, we just told people that we going to get married and didn’t say when or how and some people were quite upset and that didn’t help with the niceties of the day.

  • The good thing is that you can be completely selfish and simply choose your favourite place or restaurant or somewhere you have always dreamed of going and not have to pay for everyone else or cater to anyone else’s needs.

  • Another thing to consider is whether or not to live stream the ceremony, if you want to include others for the day.

I come from a line of elopement style weddings. My grandparents literally went to a Registry Office and grabbed two strangers off the street, all they have is one photograph of them signing the register and I used to love to look at it as a child. My parents decided go get married in five days and so they had a small, intimate affair. What I learnt from my experience and their perspectives too, is not the wedding that is important but the marriage. Something that as time goes by I understand more and more. So would I wait in this COVID-19 cloud to get married? No, I would marry if that’s what I really wanted. There’s always time f a party later, when the clouds lift and the sun comes out again.

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