Are you stressing out in a knee-deep list of wedding preparations? From venue hunting to food tasting to trying out dresses, juggling lots of decisions makes you wonder if things will be easier should you elope.
If you’re thinking of skipping the traditional ceremony and opting for a simple, under-the-radar wedding, you must know both the beauty and downsides of eloping.
Should You Elope? 12 Pros and Cons of Elopements
Whether it’s a spur-of-the-moment Vegas trip or inviting a handful of guests, eloping means less planning and saving money, yet may also result in judgement and family drama.
This is why I’ve made a simple list for you to weigh the pros and cons of elopements to help you make one of the most crucial decisions of your life.
The Pros of Eloping
Less Planning and Avoid Decision Burnout
Even with a wedding planner, planning can be time-consuming and stressful. There are times when family members will demand something, friends may meddle with your decisions, and you can also disagree with your partner!
If you’re someone who quickly gets overwhelmed and suffers from decision fatigue, the no-pressure environment of eloping may be suitable for you.
Does your cousin want to bring his girlfriend? Perhaps your friend wants her nephew’s daughter to become a flower girl? Maybe your mother wants to invite someone you can’t even track on the family tree?
Eloping is a good idea if you don’t want strangers taking videos of your vows and ruining your official wedding photos. In this way, you ensure only the VIPs share the moment with you. Likewise, you can avoid awkward situations when seeing people you don’t know.
Achieve Your Bucket List Destination
When following a traditional wedding, you’ll usually need to pick a location that guests can easily come to or can accommodate all your guests.
This also means heading off to a different place for your honeymoon. What if you can do both in your dream destination? Whether it’s jet-setting to Europe or backpacking Asia, eloping lets you say “I do” in the most scenic place you want, without worrying if a guest can arrive or not.
Your Wedding, Your Rules
I witnessed a number of weddings where couples barely got the chance to touch their plates because a lot was going on. They didn’t even mingle with the people they invited.
If you want to drink right after the ceremony or you don’t want to spend a long time hearing unprepared speeches, the no-fuss ceremony of eloping can make this happen. Throw the rulebook and follow what your heart wants.
Save Time and Energy
It’s exciting to plan at first… until you have to spend your weekend driving from one church to another for ocular visits. If you don’t hire a planner, you’ll end up communicating or negotiating with a lot of people.
The night before the event, you might still talk to suppliers or change the seating plan because of surprise plus ones. On the day of the wedding, a full-blown program might involve getting up in the wee hours of the morning to prepare.
You’ll probably feel exhausted if you’re the kind of person who prefers to sit most of the time. You can say goodbye to all of these should you elope.
Make Better Financial Decisions
I encountered couples who sacrificed not having an official photographer, so they can splurge on invitations, decorations, or souvenirs, only to realize they won’t have proper wedding pictures.
Instead of spending on things some people might likely throw, you can allot that money on hiring a photographer and printing photos. Rather than buying a gown and suit you might not use again, invest in clothes or equipment you’ll undoubtedly need.
Since eloping would omit typical wedding scenarios, this also means you can save money for your future kids or dream house.
The Cons of Eloping
Limited Number of Guests
If you plan to hold the ceremony in another country or a small venue, you won’t be able to invite a lot of people. This is going to be a complete bummer if you’re a highly sociable person.
Do you think you won’t survive without interacting with at least 20 people? Do you want all your childhood best friends to be your bridesmaids? If you love parties and mingling with people, the limited or non-existent guest list of elopements will make you sad on your wedding day.
Eloping still has a negative notion in some families. Your parents or older relatives may frown upon the idea of an unannounced wedding. There are some cultures wherein traditional weddings take days, and this could imply a lack of respect for religion and culture.
Maybe you have a family tradition of walking down the aisle with your parents, making siblings part of the entourage, or throwing a huge engagement party. All of these will not happen should you elope.
Are you ready for…. *drumroll*… judgement? As you know by now, eloping has limitations. You won’t get to invite all your friends or spend the whole night dancing away on the reception dance floor.
You’d be surprised how some parents or families would argue that eloping will ruin their reputations. The unfortunate thing is that it may strain your relationship with others. Since you may receive some unsolicited reactions, there will come a time when judgements can affect you.
Imagine people saying:
“You’re eloping! *GASP* How inappropriate!”
“You got married? Why didn’t you invite me?”
Weddings are like reunions; you get to bond with relatives and friends you haven’t seen in years. Your parents will invite aunts and uncles who like making a scene. As chaotic as it can be, a wedding brings together several groups of people.
While there’s a chance that eloping can save you from drama, you also have to be ready for the possibility that it will fire back. Despite being the ones spending and stressing out on preparation, there are people, believe it or not, who will throw a fit and get offended by your decision.
A few years from now, you may look back and regret not holding a conventional wedding. You think you should have invited more people, walked down the aisle, tossed a bouquet, and so on.
The emotions of reminiscing the wedding day vary from person to person. While some couples won’t regret eloping, others might feel glum about skipping common wedding elements.
Lack of Mementos and Gifts
Should you elope, you may miss the opportunity to receive gifts. In this day and age, it’s becoming increasingly acceptable to ask for monetary gifts instead of things. Besides, you may have friends who know what gifts are going to be beneficial for your journey as a married couple.
Aside from that, I observed a lot of couples enjoy looking over their wedding pictures and reliving all the moments that happened on their special day. You may not have a wedding album or at least tagged photos from your loved ones if you elope.
As you can see, eloping has perks and disadvantages. Getting married is a huge milestone in life, and celebrating it should depend on what you and your partner truly desire. Follow what you think makes the most sense and prioritize your relationship with your spouse on a momentous day.