4 Questions To Ask Yourselves Before Eloping in Queenstown

Let's just be real, planning a wedding is hard work and now a days there are so many extra things that the world of instagram and facebook are telling us we need to have to make it the perfect day .... the list is basically endless... and so is the stress. I've met brides who are completely calm and collected that 2 weeks before the wedding get so stressed they can't even talk about the event without either starting to shake or just full on crying. It's tough out there folks. 

Glenochy Wedding Photography

So when you're in the begining stages of planning the perfect day, why do so many people consider jumping on the next plane to Queenstown (hi 👋🏻) ? And how do you decide if it's right for you? Let's talk about 4 questions you should be asking yourself when you're trying to decide between the 100 people party or the 2 person tango. 

1. What do you want your day to be about? 

Queenstown Elopement

I would say when you start planning your wedding, you realise very quickly what your priorities are. Those little things you've always wanted to happen on the day that you can't live without. This will impact your decision a lot. If you've always imagined walking down the aisle with all eyes on you, and having a raging dance floor till the wee hours of the night.. eloping is probably not going to be for you. On the other hand, if you've always wanted to go somewhere secluded, with only your closest friends and/or family around you to celebrate, it can probably stay on the board of options. 

Another side of this to think about is what traditions are you picturing having as a part of your day? Although when you elope these things are still possible, but you'll just have to think about who needs to be there (ex. if you want to include anything that includes a priest, the top of a mountain won't really be an option as a ceremony location... unless you have a super cool priest I guess!) 

Glenochy Wedding

2. What is your budget? 

Budget is one of the main reasons people tell me they chose to elope. Weddings can get expensive man... A real up side with elopements is often people steps a fraction of what the average wedding would cost but still get to hire the best vendors for the job, or get to fit in something that they would never dream of if they had spent their budget on a big day, such as a an awesome stylist to create the perfect ceremony and reception space, a helicopter ride to a secluded mountain lake, maybe that epic dress you wanted but with all the other expenses couldn't afford! Honestly, when budget comes into play... elopements have weddings beat. 

3. How many feathers will be ruffled? 

Glenochy Elopement

A big reason I've heard from couples struggling to plan their wedding is - 'Our family would have killed us!' or 'our friends wanted to be there.' Both completely understandable, and if you want your day to be about your family an friends, this makes complete sense, or even better - if your parents have the resources and are going to pay for it, then hell, head on over to the knot and start looking for venues. But otherwise, it's not their day, and honestly, as harsh as it sounds... they'll get over it. This day is about you, and by caving in and just doing what your family or friends expect....nine times out of ten, you'll regret it, and fuck regretting things in life, especially one that could put you in debt. 

4. Have you considered the other option? 

Gay Wedding Queenstown

If you are in the middle, you want friends and family there but don't want to host a huge event... why not go for an intimate wedding? In Queenstown, these are the most common weddings I shoot.

To be consisted an elopement (in my books), is under 30 people, and so an intimate wedding is between 30-70. That might still seem like a lot of people, but let me tell you .... Considering that most weddings range from one to three hundred... and 70 is nothing! I consider it the perfect size if you still want your day to include the people in your life, but you want to be able to still focus on the two of you. Although it limited you to a venue, where as an elopement can happen on any old mountain top or field, it's still a great way to compromise.


BONUS 5. How do you really make your day special?

Okay, so I feel like before instagram really became a thing, people thought eloping was just heading down to the courthouse and signing a few papers. Now, don't get me wrong, I love a good shot gun wedding, they're always epic, but there is a lot more you can do with the whole elopement thing, especially when you choose somewhere like Queenstown to do it. 

Because it's only you, and you've got a pretty low cost as it is, I always love when couples really make the experience their one. Whether that means hiring a stylist to create a beautiful arch for their ceremony and a private reception for the two of them to enjoy the surroundings in a private forest (example below) or that hiking 5km into the mountains, or even heading down to the lake, getting hitched then spending the rest of the day enjoying wine on the beach - your day is yours to create, and with out without others, my goal is to make it memorable and beautiful, whatever that looks like to you! 

Queenstown Elopement