Elope to Hawaii for a Stress-Free Wedding on the Beach!

Are controlling mothers, crazy families, outrageous costs and boring local venues causing wedding day blues? Ditch the stress, save your money and elope to Hawaii for a simple, romantic, budget friendly wedding on a sun kissed white sand beach!

Secret Beach, Ko Olina

Waimanalo Beach

Elope appears to have become shorthand for "small destination wedding," "wedding that is not financially insane," or "wedding that allows us to not invite all the people we would rather not invite." - Merriam-Webster.com

Secret Beach, Ko Olina

The last thing any couple needs is to start their marriage off all stressed out and deep in debt for a single day in their life they mostly won't remember due to all the chaos and overwhelm. I am the lucky Hawaii wedding photographer who gets to photograph the happy, relaxed couples barefoot in the sand while saying their vows to each other in a very intimate ceremony. Many times it's just the two of them, or at most, a couple of good friends or parents in attendance. The mood is light, relaxed and carefree and isn't that just what we all want on our wedding day?

Waimanalo Beach

Waimanalo Beach, Sherwood Forest

While a basic half day wedding and reception in the US can easily hit $20,000 and just goes up from there, the average Oahu beach wedding package can be had for under $2000. And that includes everything you need: beach permit, license, flowers, wedding photography, wedding planner, etc.

Of course, you can arrange for most of these things yourself, but the wedding planning companies that do thousands of these beach wedding packages per year can save you a ton of work and hassle. The one place I believe they often fall short is on the photography and videography services. Hawaii beach wedding photography is surprisingly challenging due to the harsh light (mid day) or low light (sunset) conditions found at Hawaii's white sand beaches. And I am seldom impressed with the quality of the Hawaii beach wedding photographers offered by these companies (check out my blog post "Natural Light vs Flash Photography." for more thoughts on this.)

Makapu'u Beach wedding portrait

The good news is that you can usually choose hire your own Hawaii wedding photographer instead of using their low-paid beginners. You want the best wedding photos of your special day and that means hiring an experienced Hawaii elopement wedding photographer that creates the work that is most pleasing to YOUR eyes.

Oahu's North Shore sunset wedding ceremony

Sunrise beach wedding ceremony at Bellow's Air Force base

Another popular low cost use of the Hawaiian beach ceremony is the vow renewal ceremony for couples wishing to renew their vows in a meaningful, intimate and romantic setting while also keeping the costs low. Many Oahu wedding planners offer the vow renewal ceremony as well, and we are always happy to help you with a referral if needed. Like a wedding or elopement ceremony, marriage vow renewals are all about personal preference and can easily be tailored to fit your vision.

Vow renewal ceremony at Waimanalo Beach

Vow renewal, Waimanalo Beach, Oahu

Some couples want a very private and intimate wedding elopement ceremony, and there is only the couple, the officiant and the wedding photographer present. Some couples bring a long their parents or just a couple of close friends. Other couples invite all their friends and families, rent a big house and have a week of celebration and fun on the beach, capped with getting married on the beach at sunset surrounded by all their loved ones. That's the great thing about eloping to Hawaii - it's as private and intimate as you want it to be.

Just the two of us, North Shore Oahu

Wedding rings over bouquet

Family & friends celebrating at Kailua Beach

In closing, a Hawaii beach wedding or elopement ceremony is best suited for engaged couples seeking a quiet, intimate, simple and low cost wedding. These type of wedding ceremonies also appeal to adventurous, irreverent and quirky bride and grooms who are seeking a unique wedding experience in the beautiful natural setting of Hawaii. An Oahu Hawaii beach wedding will appeal to couples who like the idea of being barefoot in the sand with foamy waves lightly lapping their feet, the warm Hawaii trade winds ruffling their hair, and rain squalls passing nearby. It's definitely NOT for the bride who wants every hair in place or her dress kept immaculate.

If you love gorgeous wedding portraits surrounded by nature at it's finest, I would love to be your Hawaii wedding photographer!

North Shore Sunset wedding portrait

White sands of Waimanalo Beach

Makapu'u Beach wedding portrait, just after a rain squall passed over

Claire & Luke's wedding started off sunny....

...then came the downpour...

...only to clear up in 20 minutes to get more spectacular wedding portraits!

Planning a wedding elopement to Hawaii? Contact me today for a free quote! You can also see our Oahu wedding photography packages here, our Maui wedding photography pricing here, and our Kauai Wedding & Elopement packages here

For more information about Hawaii wedding photography check out some of my other wedding blog posts here. And last, if you'd like to see this Hawaii elopement & wedding photographer in action, check out these fun behind-the-scenes videos here!

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