Posted By Admin on February 03, 2019
SELECT YOUR WEDDING DESTINATION
While you could go as far afield as you choose, there are a few things to consider when choosing/planning a destination wedding:
The SCENERY – Whether you are planning to get married on the Irish cliffs of Moher, on the beach in Maldives, Chapel on Stilts in Bora Bora or the Namib Desert, the scenery/backdrop will set the stage for your wedding theme. The CULTURE of the country of your destination wedding will also play a major role in your special day.
The STYLE – The style of your wedding (traditional/formal/informal etc.) has to complement your surrounds.
The SIZE and INTIMACY – How many people are you planning to invite or will it be only the two of you? The number of guests that attend your wedding will be affected by the distance that has to be travelled.
The SEASON and CLIMATE – It might be wonderful to marry on a Caribbean beach in January, but you will not have the same climate for your wedding in May. Also remember peak seasons do influence the travelling costs.
The COST – the costs for the wedding ceremony varies from country to country and wedding package to wedding package. Having 10 of your nearest and dearest on a cruise could cost less than having a formal wedding ceremony and reception for a 100 people.
The PLANNING - Could you plan it yourself or would you have to use a Wedding Planner or Tour Operator? If you are planning the wedding yourself, you will spend a lot of time on research and getting the necessary documentation in order. This could be a fun project with a major sense of accomplishment at the end, but if you however do not have the time, it might be a very good idea to enlist the services of a Wedding Planner or Tour Operator.
The LEGAL REQUIREMENTS - Your marriage is governed by the laws of the country in which you are marrying and not by the laws of the country in which you are resident. In order for your marriage to be legally recognised in your country of residence, you must meet not only the legal requirements of the country in which you are marrying but also the legal requirements of your home country.
The below information is for South Africans resident in South Africa that wish to have a destination wedding abroad.
Now that you have selected your destination, we may look into the legal requirements for getting married abroad. Remember, this is a guideline and information should be verified with the Foreign Embassy or Consulate of the country in which you will be married.
In most countries you will need to produce some or all of the following:
Obtainable from the South African Department of Home Affairs
• Birth Certificate.
• 10 Year Passport (with at least 6 months validity remaining).
• Certificate of No Impediment (Valid of 6 months) - this document verifies single status and that you are free to marry. You will require the following documentation upon requesting this Certificate:
• A letter stating the reason for which you require the Letter of No Impediment.
• Certified copy of Passport or Identity Document.
• Certified copy of Death Certificate of previous spouse (if widowed).
• Certified copy of Divorce Certificate (if divorced).
• The applicable fee.
Please note: Some countries might require the following, so please ensure that you allow sufficient time for processing.
• Certificates no older than 2-3 months at the time of marriage.
• Certificates may need to be translated.
• Certificates may need to be endorsed or exchanged for a locally acceptable version.
• Certificates may need to be legalised (Apostille stamp).
• Certificates may require that witnesses swear an Affidavit.
• Decree Absolute (if you are divorced)
• Death Certificate and previous Marriage Certificate (if you are a widower).
• Adoption Certificate (if you are adopted).
• Proof of Residence – proof of your current residence i.e. utility bill.
• Letter of consent from a parent or guardian (if you are not of the minimum ‘age’)
• Name change proof stamped by a solicitor.
• Sworn Affidavits / Declaration of Single Status (no impediment) - signed and stamped by a notary public confirming both parties are free to marry.
Please confirm the age of the documents before submitting – some countries require some of the documentation to be no older than 1 month from the wedding date.
No matter where you chose to have your destination wedding, you should also be aware of the following:
• Documentation required will be original or certified copies.
• Authentication / Legalisation and Apostilles is usually required by foreign authorities before they will allow a document issued in South Africa to be used for official purposes in their country.
• Translations may be required if your documentation is not in the local language of the country in which you are getting married.
• Time Frame for submitting your documentation will vary from country to country.
• Some countries require that your documentation is submitted in person and other countries will allow a third party, such as a wedding planner to submit the documentation on your behalf.
• Some countries require that a set amount of time must have passed after a divorce before you can remarry.
• Some countries may require that couples have blood tests and a medical examination prior to the marriage taking place.
• Some countries may require certain nationalities to produce proof of entry and return.
Sources: https://www.weddingsabroadguide.com, http://www.home-affairs.gov.za