There's a myth out there that couples elope because they care less about their wedding day, and I'm here to tell you that is just not true at all. If you ask me, I'd say they maybe even care a little bit more. Crazy, right? But the fact of the matter is that big weddings are just not for everyone, so if you're looking for an incredible, intimate, and authentic experience, there's a good chance eloping is the way to go. Here are the Top 6 Reasons Couples Choose To Elope instead of having a traditional wedding!
1. YOU'D LOVE AN INTIMATE EXPERIENCE
So it turns out that most couples who have a traditional wedding only get about 20 minutes of alone time, max, on their entire wedding day. It's a day that's all about you two coming together, so why not find ways to spend it together? Plus, if you're inviting 100-200+ guests, how much meaningful conversation are you able to have with everyone you've invited? An intimate elopement experience with just a handful of your closest friends & family allows you to truly celebrate your love and have a day full of incredible moments and experiences together, rather than stressing out trying to make sure that everyone's having a good time!
2. ELOPEMENTS ARE GENERALLY MORE SUSTAINABLE THAN TRADITIONAL WEDDINGS
Here's a not-so-fun fact: the average American wedding day with about 100 guests results in approximately 400-500 pounds of trash. The first time I read that, I was blown away, but if you think about it? It's not all that surprising. All the food that ends up not getting eaten, many of the decorations and numerous florals thrown away at the end of the night, dresses and attire that folks only wear once, party favors and gifts left behind, all kinds of things that may not seem like a big deal on their own, but definitely add up. Travel is a major factor too - when you invite 100+ guests, they're often flying or driving from all over the country to your ceremony, which has a huge carbon impact. If you elope, it's often just you and a select few people going out into the world to celebrate!
3. YOU WANT YOUR WEDDING DAY TO SPEAK TO YOUR SOUL
Let's be really honest for a second, okay? The wedding industry is just that - an industry. The whole meaning of marriage has been swallowed whole by folks telling you that you need this, that, and the other thing, or your wedding hasn't been done properly. You have to have this amount of parties, invite this many people, your bridesmaids and groomsmen have to be even, all kinds of things that just... don't really matter. There's the possibility too that you both might be pretty introverted, and the thought of a big party (while totally fun) is just not really what you're into. If it doesn't feel right to you, don't do it. If you're looking to celebrate your love & the two of you coming together, there's a good chance you'd love a more authentic experience like an elopement.
4. YOU WANT TO AVOID POTENTIAL FAMILY DRAMA
I get it, totally. There is this huge expectation with a traditional wedding to invite your whole family, but what if you don't get along with your family? You'll be stressed out the whole day hoping Aunt Sue doesn't get a little too tipsy, your sister doesn't rehash old memories that might not be so great, and all kinds of dynamics that you shouldn't have to worry about on your own wedding day. By choosing to elope, you totally eliminate the issue. I promise - you deserve a wedding day that's all about you & your love. Nothing else. No other drama. Even couples who get along with their families often say that drama somehow inevitably crept into their day due to high stress and bringing everyone together! If you're not interested in juggling the drama, you don't need to. Elope instead!
5. YOU VALUE EXPERIENCES OVER THINGS
Chances are, you'd much rather spend your money on an experience over things. You'd rather check another National Park off the list than buy a new fancy watch. You'd rather take your dog on a hike to a hidden lake than go on a shopping spree at the mall. For a lot of eloping couples, this value carries over to their wedding day. Why wouldn't it? It's not that you don't want to invest in your wedding day, but that you want that investment to be more meaningful (and better to the planet). If you're intentional with your money & time normally, it makes a lot of sense that you would make the day you commit yourself to your partner to be one of the best experiences, well, ever.
6. YOU TRULY BELIEVE THAT LIFE SHOULD BE AN ADVENTURE
If you're anything like me, the thought of getting married in a hotel ballroom (even a nice one), is, well, not ideal. If you're the kind of person who is always outside and experiencing how incredible our planet is, it doesn't really make sense not to do that for your wedding day as well. If you want to summit a new mountain on your wedding day, I'll be up at 3AM with you, headlamp on, to start making our way up the trail. If you want to kayak across a brand new lake to an island you've heard is pretty magical, my life jacket is on and paddle in hand. If you're willing to forge your own path and break out of the status quo, why not elope? Your wedding day is supposed to be one of the most incredible days of your life, so treat it that way. I promise - you won't regret it.
Thinking about eloping but not quite sure where yet? I totally get it, it's a big ol' world out there! Check out this blog post - How To Choose An Elopement Location Looking for ways to make your wedding day more sustainable? This one's worth a read - Three Sustainable Wedding Ideas
If you're absolutely stoked to do the damn thing and plan your own incredible elopement, reach out to me! There's genuinely nothing I love more than connecting couples more deeply to the planet and creating incredible experiences for you, and I'd love to get in touch.
Kira McGrigg Photo is based in Bellingham, Washington, and specializes in inclusive outdoor elopements and couples photography.