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11 Stories About Eloping That'll Have You Packing Your Bags

My husband and I had a big wedding. It was in a barn in Hudson, New York, and it was a near-perfect day, despite the fact that the year leading up to it and all the planning involved was, frankly, a nightmare. The celebration was incredibly romantic and amazingly fun, and I have zero regrets about having a fancy blowout for our special day. But whenever I hear stories about eloping, I have to admit that an intimate, stress-free elopement does sound pretty nice (especially when I consider how much money couples who elope save).

Elopements can sometimes cause as much drama as traditional weddings do. When all the people who love you don't get to witness your big day (or even know about it), feelings can get hurt. But no matter what others think, your wedding day should be a reflection of what you and your partner want, not your families. Whether you plan something traditional, quirky, over-the-top, or quiet depends on the vision that you and your SO have. If your dream day only includes the two of you, an officiant, and a witness, then an elopement might be for you. If you're on the fence, these dreamy elopement stories from Reddit might change your mind.

B&B Wedding Bells

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My husband and I eloped and it was wonderful. The trip was probably the best four days of my life! We went to a very nice bed and breakfast in a historic area. They had an elopement package, so for about $1k, we had a little ceremony with an officiant. They provided the cake and the flowers and a four-day stay in a gorgeous luxury room. We're private people so it was ideal for us.

rachelbeee

Peak Privacy

Maybe this isn't technically an elopement, but we ran off and got married just the two of us, although we told family and friends ahead of time. We flew to Colorado where you can sign your own marriage license without an officiant or witnesses. We climbed up a mountain to Hanging Lake, said some words to each other, signed our paperwork, brought it back to be recorded, and it's all official and legal! We'd both been married previously and so [we] wanted to avoid a big affair for the second time around, but we both agreed we'd wished we'd done it that way the first time. So much less stressful not worrying about everyone else and just focusing on the two of you. A great way to start a new life together!

zebrafreak420

Waterfall Wedding

My husband and I eloped in Niagara Falls this past summer.
We invited four of our besties (two couples). Got a venue outside, right across from the American Falls. We did the tourist thing in the morning, then did ... some of our photo shoot, and got married right at sunset.
Then we did some more photos and had dinner at a steak house.
It was romantic and amazing. And all about us. We didn't have to worry about any family BS or making other people happy. The day was completely our own exactly what we wanted and nothing else.
We had a blast and would make the same decision again.

GingerDryad

Quiet Key West Celebration

My husband and I eloped/honeymooned in Key West. I still wore a gown and he wore a suit, which made for some gorgeous photos on the beach. We then just spent the week there eating, drinking, and swimming. It was a lot of fun, really special, and we've never regretted not having a formal wedding. In fact, every time we attend one we talk about how glad we are that we eloped. Weddings are a lot of work, a lot of running around, and sometimes the focus just becomes on the party rather than the couple.

thesixthamethyst

Coastal Service

My hubby and I eloped. We'd been together for 12 years, didn't want a fuss or a big to-do. Considered having just a small wedding but then realized how many people we could potentially offended with, 'If you invite them then you have to invite them, too,' scenarios. We felt like we either invite everyone or no one. In the end we figured we'd invite no one. That way everyone is treat the same. Didn't even tell people we were doing it. We just went up to the coast for a few days. Our nine-year-old son was there, [and] our witnesses were the couple who ran the B&B we stayed at. It was perfect. It was about us. Would do it again exactly the same way. When we got home we personally told family and close friends before announcing it on FB.
We did have a party a few months later, just [a] buffet, and we invited everyone.

kirsten1980

Central Park Party

We eloped and I 100% recommended it! No regrets whatsoever — we had this special day just for us instead of running around and trying to talk to 100+ people and doing a bunch of things that we didn’t enjoy.
We chose NYC and it was beyond magical. Had two friends come and meet up with us, one officiated and the other was our witness. Then we had a first dance in Central Park as someone sang to us while playing guitar and a hill full of people sang to us. Then we wandered around the city and just enjoyed each other’s company.

owlalwaysloveyou7

Snow White Moment

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My wife and I eloped around five months after an unplanned pregnancy. Although the baby rushed things along a bit, both of us already felt we were headed in that direction anyway, so it wasn't too big of a stretch on the relationship.
We had intended to fly to the West Coast to be with some close family friends and elope there as informally as possible, putting off the 'real' marriage ceremony for a year later when we'd bet settled into our new place and parental lifestyle. We advertised it as a non-event, because there would be literally no family there (and no friends aside from this family), and didn't want to make anyone feel excluded.
For the eloping 'ceremony,' we had intended to walk to a park, say, 'I love you,' and stuff, exchange rings, and call it a day. (Our friend Mark got a license to officially marry us.) Although much of it remained light and informal, it turned into something very sacred for us. We improvised our vows, and our friends each offered a blessing to us for our future together. I kid you not, a bunch of animals either walked up or appeared nearby during the ceremony: a cat, a deer, a duck, an eagle, a woodchuck, a frog, and perhaps another I'm forgetting...
So, we continue to describe it as a formality — a precursor to the 'big' event next year — but it will always have a very special meaning for us, and privately we will celebrate the date as our real anniversary.

NebbishD

Iceland Union

Long story short — my husband is British, I'm American. I moved from Texas to England a few years ago. December 2014 we got engaged and had to go through the process of applying for a fiancé visa, so while I did this I had to be back home in Texas until it was approved. It got approved and we had a six-month time frame to get married. We couldn't decide where to have a wedding, it felt too fussy, and we wanted to save money because I would have to apply for yet another visa after we got married and visas are expensive. In the end we decided to elope in Iceland. Got super cheap flights, used AirBnB because it's much cheaper than hotels, and we stayed in Iceland for a week as our honeymoon.
Honestly, it was the best choice for us. We didn't have to worry about any family spending money to fly to either America or England, we didn't have to worry about wedding costs or debts, and we made the entire day about us and only us, which felt more intimate and special. Once we were back in England we had a mini reception with his family and friends and over Christmas we flew to Texas to visit my family and had another mini reception with my family and friends.

booo-you-whore

New Orleans Nuptials

We flew to New Orleans on a Sunday, checked into a fabulous B&B in the late evening, had flowers and a boutonniere delivered to the B&B Monday morning, and got ready to go. We met up with a photographer a little before our courthouse appointment, had our little ceremony, and departed the courthouse in a vintage limo. It was a great day and we got great pictures to document it all. We knew the pictures would be important to our family, so we spent most of our budget on that. After the wedding, we spent the rest of the week exploring New Orleans. It was perfect.
Logistically... I planned the courthouse appointment, photographer, flower delivery, and limo in advance. It wasn’t super cheap, but it was significantly cheaper than a full wedding and it was really special. I was nervous about timing and coordinating all of the vendors, but it all worked out perfectly in the end. The rest of the trip we just played by ear — we had zero plans or agenda — and it was fabulous and stress free!

jubilancenjustice

NYC Ceremony

My husband and I took a trip to New York City and eloped there last December. We told our immediate families and our closest friends and had a friend come with us to be our witness. Honestly, it was just as magical as any wedding we could’ve had and it felt so much more special because it was just about us. I felt so much pressure to please both families every time we talked about a wedding and we decided we shouldn’t feel that way. We spent an amazing week in NYC and got to see Hamilton on Broadway. 10/10 would recommend.

siemprehayquimica

Hawaiian Hideaway

We are [a couple] from California who eloped to Hawaii a couple of years ago. It was just the two of us, and to make our elopement easier, we hired a company to do the preparation for us.
It was our 'Nothing fancy, just love' moment and [we have] no regrets. We ... managed to save money for investments and more important things in life. It’s not how you tied the knot but the quality of partnership that matters.

Marythatgirl

Elopements aren't for everyone. Maybe you've always dreamed of having a huge venue, a live band, and 400 of your closest friends with you on your big day. But if you and your partner would rather celebrate with a party of two, you might just prefer the sort of wedding day these couples had.