Elopement Misconceptions

A while back I asked many of my friends, family & random strangers if they could help me with answering some questions. The topic- Elopements!

What exactly is an elopement?

Even though I stated to everyone that there were no wrong answers, the responses I received were very interesting! There is unfortunately a lot of stigma and negative connotation concerning elopements. I am hopeful we at Seeking Venture can help clarify a bit more about what this topic is all about and possibly help with planning your own elopement down the line!

Myths and Maybes:

What are some of your first thoughts when you hear a couple is ‘eloping’? What do you think it means to elope?

Here on some of the most popular responses I received:

Getting hitched or marrying on a whim. False.

Most of the time we think of a couple getting ‘hitched’ by taking a plane to Vegas and saying some quick vows by an Elvis impersonator. However this is not to be confused with eloping! Somewhere down the line, these terms got intertwined and associated with each other. Elopements of course can be quickly planned, but most of the time it takes months to still figure out. So be careful when you use the phrase ‘getting hitched’ – this has nothing to do with elopements!

Elopements are a huge secret. Maybe.

It’s up to the couple if they want to make their eloping plans known to others. Some announce it during the planning stage. Or some couples may share the news afterward. Not telling anyone is a couples choice, whether they are getting eloped or not.

The bride is pregnant or someone’s green card is about to expire! False.

Oh boy! While we hope this isn’t the main reason someone is deciding to tie the knot, it still has nothing to do with eloping! Elopements most of the time are carefully planned and thought out. When someone is getting married quickly for the reason(s) above, THEN you can possibly say they are ‘getting hitched’!

A private intimate ceremony. True!

Whether it’s just the bride & groom, or a more intimate wedding ceremony with some friends & family, these ceremonies vs a traditional wedding are a lot smaller. We consider 30 guests or smaller to be considered an elopement rather than a wedding. Any celebration with 30+ guests but under 80 we would consider ‘an intimate wedding.’ Any guest count above 80 we think more as a traditional wedding.

The couple is broke or cheap. False.

Elopements are open to couples with any kind of budget. Of course it can save a lot of money! You don’t need to hire as many vendors or pay for food for all those guests like you were going to for that larger venue wedding. However it doesn’t mean you can’t have an epic elopement with a lot of value attached! Many couples choose to go to a place they’ve never been to. Your choice of location, where you stay, what you choose to wear and the vendors you use will still most likely cost thousands of dollars. But not ‘venue’ thousands! You can really stretch your dollar and pick what you want for literally everything, rather than saying to yourself ‘Oh, we will just go cheaper on the flowers and table favors.’

They aren’t planners. Maybe!

Maybe the couple has an idea where they want to have their elopement, and sometimes they have no clue where to start. That’s where we come in– Having an elopement guide really takes a lot of the stress and planning out of it for a couple. The couple still 100% chooses what they want to do, but we guide them along the way with vendor, location & timeline recommendations. We spend endless hours scouting for incredible locations, so they don’t have to.

A bride and groom kiss in a vineyard for their Carmel elopement.

Elopement Defined

So what is the ‘correct’ definition of elopement? I had a few sum it up perfectly. One of my favorite responses was “two people getting married the way they want to.” So much yes! Even though the planning might take months, it is normally a less stress than planning a huge traditional wedding. An elopement really means two people having their day the way they want, with a more intimate gathering of friends & family, or no one there at all. We consider elopements to be with 30 guests or under, but other photographers set their own limits.

It’s not for everyone!

Eloping might not be right for everyone. Some people might want to have a big, more traditional wedding and that’s cool too! The point of eloping is that you are doing it for yourself and your partner, not for other people. It’s about what the two of you want for your day and how you want to remember it.

But next time the topic of a couple eloping comes up, maybe you can help take out some of the confusion and educate someone else! There are many reasons why couple’s are now choosing to elope.

If you are thinking of eloping, maybe consider gorgeous Hawaii or Big Sur as your destination!

A redwood elopement in Big Sur.

Ready to start planning your own elopement?

Elopement misconceptions add to pinterest.
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  1. Alex C says:

    This is such a great post! It’s so interesting to see how people outside the industry view elopements and I love how you bust the myths and set the record straight! This is a great insight for anyone interested in elopements but aren’t super sure what that means!!

  2. Laszlo says:

    Nice article to understand well what`s really an elopement. I like these pictures too in the post. 🙂

  3. Sienna says:

    Yes, we are definitely rewriting the definition of elopement. Such a helpful article!

  4. So much good information for couples thinking about eloping!

  5. Sam K says:

    This is a very insightful article; Elopements are undiscovered territory for many couples, so this article will really help! I hadn’t considered some of the misconceptions you covered and I’m glad you covered them. Thanks for sharing!

  6. laura says:

    This is such a handy guide, I had no idea what preconceptions people have about couples eloping. Thanks for clearing up all the confusion !!

  7. Hanna says:

    Way to tackle and clarify the misunderstandings about modern elopements! There is such a pervasive connotation that we are pulling down and rebuilding!

  8. Elopements are such a great way to share an unforgettable experience on your wedding day!

  9. So good! I love busting myths about elopements. These blog has so much good info!

  10. Justyna says:

    Yes yes yes to all of this! Absolutely stunning shots accompanied the set!

  11. Magdalena says:

    What a great informative article about elopements. Also I loved the way how you wrote it.

  12. Traci says:

    I love these blog posts so important

  13. Cara says:

    YES! There are so many misconceptions to eloping and this totally clears them all up. Love that you wrote about this. It will be a great resource to so many brides and grooms and families of those eloping.

  14. caroline says:

    I absolutely love these myth busters! and gorgeous photos 🙂

  15. Jenae says:

    What a wonderful resource of information on Hawaii Elopements! Gorgeous photos to add!

  16. Afton says:

    Agree with all of these! Elopements aren’t what they used to be <3

  17. Justyna Butler says:

    So important to explain those questions! Great work!

  18. What a great article! Elopements have changed so much from what they used to be and are such a great option for people to get married!

  19. […] If you aren’t quite sure what it means to elope and you missed our other blog, check out Misconceptions About Elopements. […]

  20. […] back we talked about the Misconceptions of Elopements. Something we didn’t touch on is ‘The Selfish Argument’, because we thought it […]

  21. Nicole says:

    Ummm I LOVE how you set this post up- Starting with the misconception followed by the truth. Well done!

  22. Kaitlyn says:

    Lol, I love the true/false/maybe style for these misconceptions about elopements! I’m so glad you’re sharing more insight because the great thing about elopements is that the options are endless, and the old idea of eloping is not what it used to be (thank goodness!). <3

  23. Traci says:

    There are so many misconceptions about elopements thank you for Sharing

  24. corey says:

    Elopements are the best and so intentional. They take a lot of planning and its certainly not just a couple session. Love your post!

  25. Kristen says:

    I love how you wrote this! There are a lot of notions about eloping and it has definitely changed its meaning over time. You definitely clear it up!

  26. Sarah says:

    I LOVE this! So helpful and so true about some of the misconceptions surrounding eloping! Thank you so much for writing this!

  27. Andrea says:

    Yesss!!! My husband and I eloped a few years ago, and it was the most incredible experience! It wasn’t because we were cheap, or because we wanted to run off in secret. We just didn’t want to put all the time, effort and money into a big wedding because it didn’t feel right for us! We loved our wedding day and wouldn’t change a thing. 🙂

  28. Sabrina Kaye says:

    Love that you cleared up these misconceptions (and your titles gave me a little giggle haha) Great resource for couples who are unfamiliar with modern elopements!

  29. Laura says:

    While there are a lot of valid things you address in this post, I also just want to humbly say that there are couples who do still get married because one of their green cards are about to expire, and there’s nothing wrong with that! My aunt and uncle eloped the day before the COVID-19 lockdown started because of citizenship complications. Furthermore, this subject has been weighing on me personally during the pandemic, because my partner lives on another continent and we may not be able to see each other at all this year. If a couple is getting married because of visa reasons, that doesn’t mean they didn’t marry out of love or that it wasn’t carefully thought out. <3

    • Heather says:

      Thank you so much Laura for your comment! You are absolutely right– The point we were trying to make is that a couple should never solely marry for that reason alone. Being in love and wanting a life together is of course extremely important, and as long as they do then marrying to help out with legal issues such as green cards is absolutely okay! <3

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