The Top 10 Reasons to Elope

When trying to figure out if eloping is the right thing for you there are a lot of questions that you may have. I am excited to share with you the top 10 real reasons why couples choose to elope. Contributing additional knowledge from what I’ve learned working with couples who decided to elope & how they described the benefits of their own experience. These reasons are why they made the choice to intentionally plan a day solely around their desires was a more valuable experience than having a large wedding. You may have other questions as well.

Benefits of Eloping

When planning a traditional wedding there are many moving parts to take into consideration. It’s easy to get lost in the shuffle of it all when all you really want to do is spend the day celebrating the love you share with your partner. You don’t want to worry about who turned in their rsvp, if there’s a problem with the caterer or following a strict timeline so you don’t keep your guests waiting. Maybe a big wedding just isn’t your style & you’re ready to throw out the rule book & create your own tradition. More & more engaged couples are realizing that if they don’t want their wedding to feel like work, they elope. Elopements have become more popular for many different reasons. So let’s break down the top 10 reasons to elope from couples like you.

1. The “Just Us” Experience

This is easily first on the list of the top 10 reasons to elope. The “Just Us” experience that an elopement provides is unparalleled. It’s ultimately one of the top reasons couples choose to elope over having a traditional wedding. They want to spend their wedding day together celebrating their love. Not spend only a handful of moments alone together being preoccupied with entertaining guests or follow a strict timeline. Spending time trying to escape the anxiety induced by trying to make other people happy. For example, having the groom be dragged away to deal with family members meanwhile the bride partakes in a tradition that isn’t important to her isn’t the way most people want to spend their wedding. All too often during large weddings, couples aren’t able to spend much time alone for many different reasons that are seemingly impossible to predict.

When you elope you & your partner have the entire day to spend together. Creating a day authentic to your love story. A day that reflects your values without any added pressure, anxiety, or obligations to anyone else. Choosing to elope is choosing to prioritize you & your partner & the day you commit yourselves to one another. Whether that’s going on a having a picnic by a lake, exploring a new place, or building memories with a select few loved ones. You’re able to enjoy a stress-free day that’s 100% dedicated to you.

2. Eliminating Planning Stress

One of the most considerable differences between large weddings & elopements is the planning. Of course, with a traditional wedding, there are so many questions to answer.

Who do we invite? Does anyone have any dietary restrictions? How many plus 1’s should we allow? What venue should we choose? The list goes on & on.

You end up asking more questions about how you can make your wedding day great for everyone else instead of curating a day that’s all about you & your partner. To be clear, just because you are not planning a big wedding does not mean that you care any less about the experience that you’re constructing. If anything, it means a whole lot more. You are creating a valuable experience & taking a risk inventing a perfect day with your partner.

Consequently, this is another great benefit to eloping & why couples choose to elope over having a large wedding. They have made the decision to throw tradition to the wind & design an experience unique to themselves. To you maybe that’s choosing a fancy Airbnb & hiring a private chef to prepare a delicious meal. Maybe it’s visiting a destination that you’ve always dreamed of exploring. Perhaps it’s going on a hiking adventure in your favorite national forest. No matter how you break it down eloping is a more personal & enjoyable event to plan. Just you & your partner consulting with your elopement photographer to construct the day you’ve always dreamed of. Above all, you have complete control to do as much or as little planning as you like. That’s the beauty of eloping, it’s all about what you want!

Couple eloping at Sparks Lake near Bend Oregon. Outdoor venues are one of the top 10 reasons to elope.

3. Valuing Experiences over things

Couples who value experience over material things naturally tend to be drawn to elopements. They aren’t concerned with renting a ballroom & decorative centerpieces. They are more focused on prioritizing themselves & their happiness on their wedding day. & why shouldn’t you?! It’s YOUR wedding day. Rather than spend $70 a person on 150 guests to eat & drink, spend that money to travel & pamper yourselves. To put it simply, eloping couples would rather spend a few hundred dollars on a permit instead of thousands on a fancy venue. Whether you love the outdoors & all that it has to offer or just want to have stunning wedding photos in a scenic location. You’re valuing above all else the moment in time you are sharing with the one that you love. Creating a once-in-a-lifetime experience that you & your partner will cherish forever.

4. Benefits of a Drama Free Wedding Day

Let’s be honest, we’ve all got difficult relatives. Some of us are super close with our families & some of us aren’t. There is also the possibility of family expectations or social pressures that can stifle your experience of your wedding day. Regardless there seems to be no way to avoid drama on your wedding day no matter how hard you try. Although maybe having some close friends & family there is very important to you & I am definitely not saying you can’t invite anyone. But take into consideration who you really want to be there & how they will contribute to the day.

The best way to break it down is to think of the people who you consider your “first family”. Those individuals who for you & your partner who are your chosen family. The people who will 100% prioritize you & your partner on your wedding day. These people are grateful to be a part of building a memorable experience based around you & your partner. The couples that choose to elope are making the choice to do what feels right for them. They are positive that everyone they invite is in alignment with their idea. This choice easily fits its way into the top 10 reasons to elope because you are creating an adventure with your partner & of course you want to ensure that you both have an amazing, stress-free day.

5. Eloping is Intentional & Meaningful

Choosing to elope is an intentional decision based on above all else, the happiness of you & your partner over any expectations & pressures that others may try to put on you. Consequently, your elopement becomes more meaningful. Together you are curating an intimate experience for you both to share with the one you love. You’ve made the decision to not be tied up with timelines, to-do lists, & guests. This is a great benefit to eloping & why it’s made its way onto the top 10 reasons to elope. At a large wedding, it’s difficult to make time for your partner when so many other people are demanding your attention.

To put it simply it’s just easier to focus on each other and the moments you share when you choose to elope. Everyone has their own unique & authentic version of who they are & for some people that means not having a traditional wedding. To be completely vulnerable, giving yourself the opportunity to be entirely present on the day that both you & your spouse commit yourselves to one another.

6. Not the Center of Attention

Whether you’re an introvert (like 40% of the population) or an extrovert wanting to create an intimate experience, an elopement is a more rewarding experience than a traditional wedding. Not having to worry about being judged, other’s opinions, or having to please other people. You don’t have to water down your heart-felt moments or consider your audience when reciting your vows. After all, it is YOUR wedding day, why wouldn’t you want to be who you truly are while focusing solely on your partner.

You have the freedom to be your truest selves & express exactly how you really feel. Leaving all of the expectations of others in the wind to enjoy your wedding day with the one you love. I have seen couples hold back tears at their ceremony. Brides tell me they don’t want to mess up their makeup and are so worried about what feels like a performance. Saying your vows to your partner should not feel like theatre. Whether you choose to invite a few guests or have a “just us” experience, eloping makes saying your vows so much more intimate and meaningful.

7. Gorgeous Photos

All couples that get married care a lot about capturing gorgeous photos to remember their wedding day. Of course, I know that it may seem like no matter what type of event that you choose to plan for your wedding day that you can get beautiful photos. Although I cannot completely disagree that I have found that the eloping couples that I have photographed have been more relaxed than couples at large weddings. Couples that choose to have a large wedding are forced to follow intense timelines & attend to guests. With eloping, you’re forced out of the 30 minutes of rushed “look at me and smile, now kiss each other and laugh” routine.

When you decide to elope the day is yours! This is another important benefit of eloping & why this is on my of the top 10 reasons to elope. There are no situations to handle or guests to keep happy that remove you from being present with your partner. Allowing you & your partner to be more laid-back & enjoy every moment with each other, which gives so much room to capture beautifully emotive and natural photos. This all is so important when getting photos taken on your wedding day. It supports you & your partner to comfortably let your guards down & be your quirky true selves. This shines through so much in the photos that I’ve taken for eloping couples.

8. The Benefit of Saving Money Eloping

Now it’s no secret that the average elopement (costing roughly $5000- $15,000) isn’t going to be as expensive as the average wedding (costing roughly $34,000). The reception of large weddings often consumes up to 50% of the wedding budget. Which feels pretty insane to me. Therefore, when you decide to elope you have so much more room to invent your own idea of what your wedding day should be rather than follow traditional rules. You can elope on a mountain top at sunset or your favorite beach at sunrise. The choice is yours!

Since you don’t have to worry about the costs of hosting 150+ people you get to design an adventure for you & your spouse to cherish. Whether that means traveling to a destination so you can instantly start your honeymoon or going to the local spot where you spent countless memorable times already. It’s no secret why this is another one of the top 10 reasons to elope. The choices that you make for your wedding day get to be focused around the enjoyment of you & your partner.

9. Leave No Trace

A lot of couples who choose to elope are avid outdoorswomen & men. Though I’m definitely not saying you need to be gung ho about the outdoors to elope. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Although a lot of couples who choose to elope are big fans of what the outdoors has to offer. Regardless, having a Leave No Trace philosophy is important to many eloping couples & something to take into consideration. If you aren’t familiar with leave no trace it essentially means that you leave no trace of yourself or your activities in the outdoor locations that you visit. Pretty simple right? If you haven’t considered this type of policy I highly recommend learning more about what you can do to adopt this for your elopement.

Let’s also take a second to talk about how much waste comes from a traditional wedding. Did you know that on average a wedding of 150+ people can result in up to 400-600lbs of trash & roughly 63 tons of CO2? This includes single-use plastic flatware, cups, plates, napkins, balloons, flowers & the list goes on. A single wedding can potentially produce as much waste & emissions as 4 people in an entire year. It’s insanity. Anytime you see pictures or attend a lavish wedding you have no idea of the aftermath. In all honesty, large weddings are bad for the environment & wasteful. This goes hand in hand with valuing experiences of things. You are making a conscious choice to value not only your own happiness but also the environment when you choose to elope. You can tie the knot with your partner in a low-impact way while still having an unforgettable experience.

10. Choosing to Elope is an Adventure

One common characteristic of couples who choose to elope is they are not satisfied with the status quo. They are not content to go through life with the same routine just going through the motions. They face the journey of life with their hearts open, chin up with belief in what they’re doing. They’re all adventurers in their own way. Choosing to elope means that the world is your oyster. Your wedding instantly becomes a build your own adventure story that you get to write with your partner. You can go wherever you desire & do whatever you want whenever & however you prefer. Whether that’s a sunrise hike up a mountain that you’ve always wanted to explore or visiting your favorite spot on the beach for sunset.

These are the Top Ten Reasons to Elope!

To sum it up, choosing to elope over having a large traditional wedding means that you & your partner are choosing to do what is right for you. To create your own tradition & write your own story. In my experience in photographing elopements, the couples are always incredibly happy with their decision for the reasons I’ve discussed above. They enjoyed every minute of their wedding day & the photos that captured their first moments as a happily married couple. Taking pleasure in each other’s company without any outside distractions. Prioritizing themselves above all else & creating an experience that will last a lifetime. If you are ready to talk about how you can plan your elopement please contact me for a free consultation & we can discuss what your needs & wants are to create your perfect day!

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You see a stranger’s puppy & it takes everything in you not to run up & cuddle it.

Your dress gets dirt on it, and you shrug.

You think ice cream & wine is always an acceptable dinner option. Always.

You LIVE for the feeling of sunshine on your skin & wind in your hair.

You’re already screaming YASSSS WHERE DO I BOOK YOU?

I'm Emilee

I'm an elopement photographer who specializes in planning, crafting, and documenting untraditional weddings. I believe a wedding day should be filled with traditions that resonate with you. I'm here from start to finish to make that happen. Want to chat about your plans? Click below to set up a free consultation! 

You see a stranger’s puppy & it takes everything in you not to run up & cuddle it.

Your dress gets dirt on it, and you shrug.

You think ice cream & wine is always an acceptable dinner option. Always.

You LIVE for the feeling of sunshine on your skin & wind in your hair.

You’re already screaming YASSSS WHERE DO I BOOK YOU?

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