3 DESTINATION ELOPEMENT MYTHS: BUSTED
LET’S START WITH SOME HISTORY!
If you were to ask anyone older than you what eloping means to them, they will most likely say that it is connected to the idea of secrecy or running away to the courthouse in Vegas to get married on a whim. It also can be associated with the idea that a destination elopement is only for those who don’t have the budget for a “big wedding.”
According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the origin of the word “elope” comes from the Anglo-French word “aloper,” which means “to abduct, or run away.” All of these definitions can feel extremely negative and drive people away from the idea. I’m here to tell you that the negativity you feel here is a completely false perspective of what eloping really means today.
You know that in the current century this word has shifted and the concept of “destination elopements” are exceedingly popular. This article in Harper’s Bazaar tells us that Pinterest searches for destination weddings are up 32 percent in recent years. WHAT??!! That says something.
Especially in recent years, eloping has been extremely misunderstood. In today’s modern culture, there is an unreasonably high pressure on couples to have the “perfect” wedding. Don’t even get me started on how social media has affected this!! I DO love social media and I feel blessed to run my business straight from my phone. But, the ability to see everything that everyone is doing is EXHAUSTING (to say the least). Wanna break the stereotypes and bust the myths?? Keep reading!
WHAT DOES ELOPING MEAN TODAY?
If you say “destination wedding” and “elopement” today they’re pretty much synonymous. Most of my couples who decide to do a destination elopement don’t feel like they’re doing so in secret, or feeling rushed. They simply feel as if the big, traditional wedding doesn’t feel like them, and they don’t want to do something to simply please other people.
Sometimes, a specific destination might be where you had your first kiss, or it’s the first place he told you he loved you. Going back to that very spot is the only way you can envision getting married. It feels like you, and that’s the most important part of any wedding, isn’t it?? You’re the one getting married, not your mom, not your aunt, not your cousin, you. Remember that!!
There is so so much that goes into planning a traditional wedding, and I have documented my fair share of them. They’re fun!! But, it is extremely easy to lose sight of the big picture if you get lost in all the hundreds of tiny details. “What side do the napkins go on?” “Do you want the DJ in this corner or that one?” An extra $50 here, an extra $200 there.
It all adds up, and in turn can cause you to forget how SPECIAL it is that you’re getting MARRIED!! I’m not condemning the traditional wedding. I have just seen enough of them to know the danger points, and the stress that might not be worth it for you!! If you can relate, go ahead and read below how I bust these myths!
3 MAIN ELOPEMENT MYTHS
- ELOPING IS SHAMEFUL AND SELFISH
- ELOPEMENTS ARE FOR “CHEAP” PEOPLE
- ELOPEMENTS ARE LAST-MINUTE EVENTS
1. ELOPING IS SHAMEFUL AND SELFISH
When I hear people say that eloping is shameful or selfish, it truly makes me so sad! I feel like there is something so beautiful in knowing yourself well enough to realize that the big, “traditional” wedding isn’t for you. We can so easily get caught up in the things we think other people want us to do that we forget what’s most important to us.
I don’t say that to discourage anyone from having the big wedding of their dreams!! It is BEAUTIFUL and so amazing to have all of your favorite people surrounding you on your big day. However, I have seen many people seem to care more about the color of the tablecloths than the fact that they’re getting MARRIED!! To me, you’re missing the whole point if that is your greatest concern.
A destination elopement isn’t shameful or selfish, it’s actually quite brave in my opinion.
2. ELOPEMENTS ARE FOR “CHEAP” PEOPLE
I won’t sit here and lie to you, eloping is actually MUCH more inexpensive than a traditional wedding. According to The Knot, who surveyed over 27,000 couples in 2019, the average American wedding totaled around $33,900. This was on AVERAGE. So yeah, eloping might be a bit less expensive. I would at least hope so!!! However, eloping doesn’t mean that you are “cheap.” It means you value an experience with the one you’ve chosen to spend the rest of your life with. To me, that is worth every penny.
To quote Flourish Wealth Management, “Studies show that spending our hard-earned money on experiences actually makes us happier. They bring more lasting joy, often because they can be shared with others in the moment, as well as offering shareability on social media. In short, experiences are a way to build community and deepen relationships.”
I firmly believe you could be less monetarily wealthy, but rich in experiences, and be the happiest version of yourself. Though I can’t speak from the experience of eloping myself, in capturing the many that I have, I think a destination elopement is the absolute peak of that kind of experience!!
The way you choose to have your elopement captured might not be super cheap, but compared to 34 grand, it is much less expensive. 🙂
3. ELOPEMENTS ARE LAST-MINUTE EVENTS
If this isn’t the biggest lie I have heard in my entire LIFE!! While you probably could throw together an elopement super quickly, usually they take more time and planning than you realize! If you’re looking to get married in a national park, there are specific steps you must take. You can find all the information you will need on how to do that in the search bar HERE!!
One of the biggest tips I can offer is to allow yourself more time in your location than you might think you need. Plan a whole day before your ceremony to hike around and explore the area. Become familiar with the park, and take it alllll in. You want to remember everything about your wedding, including the days leading up to it!!
Enjoy the planning process, and bring someone along with you that knows the ropes and can guide you along the whole way!! When you book me as your elopement photographer I pull from all the experiences under my belt so don’t be afraid to ask as many questions as you want! I am SO STOKED for you and so so happy to answer any questions!!
IN CONCLUSION, THIS DAY IS YOURS.
However you choose to get married, remember: this day is yours, and nobody else’s!! You don’t have anything to prove to the people around you. There is so much joy to be found in doing the things that light your soul on fire, the things that make the blood rush through your veins, or going to the places that make you feel the most alive.
Your wedding should feel just like YOU.
And so should your photos. I’ll be here when you’re ready to make plans! 😉