One interesting and memorable way to get married is by doing so on a cruise ship. This is a fun-loving destination wedding option that is becoming increasingly popular. Many people find cruise ship weddings exciting because they blend the elements of a beautiful destination wedding with the honeymoon. If you want to get married on a cruise ship, it's important to research the process in which to do so.
Difficulty: Moderately Easy
Things You'll Need:
- Travel agent
Passport or birth certificate
Divorce or death certificate
- Travel agent
- Passport or birth certificate
- Divorce or death certificate
Learn about the legalities. It is important to know that legal weddings cannot be conducted while the cruise ship is sailing through international waters. However, there are certain instances, such as when a ship has a certain license, in which this is indeed possible. The majority of cruise ship weddings occur when the ship is at a port. Certain cruise lines, such as Princess cruises (See Resources), can manage sailing weddings. Research your specific cruise line and find out whether that is a possibility for your wedding.
If you plan on a Caribbean cruise wedding, your ceremony will most likely take place at a port of an American city such as Tampa or Miami, Florida. However, marriage on American territories such as Puerto Rico (a commonwealth of the United States) and the United States Virgin Islands is also very possible. It is important to follow the specific port's laws regarding marriage ceremonies, however. If you want to get married in Aruba, you must have been on the island for a minimum of 1 day before the ceremony can happen.
Use a cruise line that will plan your wedding for you. The majority of cruise lines have their own in-house wedding planners, which makes the whole process significantly easier for you. The wedding coordinators are capable of handling every last detail, from the cake and the flowers to the entertainment and food. In general, you will likely only have to specify certain easy details, such as your preferred decor color and the size and shape of the cake you desire. Cruise ship weddings are ideal for people who are not nit-picky about planning every single detail of their wedding.
Be aware of your time line. It is generally advised to try to book your cruise ship wedding between 8 months and 1 year ahead of time. It is very smart to plan as far in advance as you can, especially if you plan on having a large and elaborate wedding. Also, the more time you give the cruise ship to plan your wedding, the better your options become regarding where on the cruise ship your wedding takes place, the time the ceremony happens and which cabins you stay in.
Speak to your travel agent. Using a travel agent is the best way to book a cruise ship wedding. The travel agent is capable of handling every detail, from which cruise ship is best for weddings and so on. When the travel agent books the cruise ship wedding, you will then be assigned your own personal wedding coordinator who will start work on the planning of your wedding. In general, the price of the wedding planner is included in the cruise ship wedding package, which the majority of cruise lines have.
Make sure you get a blood test done a minimum of 10 to 15 days before your cruise ship wedding takes place. You must bring your passport or birth certificate and identification. If you have been married previously, then you should also bring either a divorce or death certificate.
Lars Tramilton has been writing professionally since 2007. His work has appeared in a variety of online publications, including CareerWorkstation. Tramilton received a bachelor's degree with a focus on elementary education from Kean University.