Cruise weddings are always adventurous and romantic leaving the couples with a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Imagine sailing in the never-ending ocean or a sea with the cold winds hitting your face, doesn’t it sound like your little slice of paradise? Well, to add icing on the cake, picture a DJ playing the tracks by the deck, whilst you sip cocktails and relax with your BAE in a comfy recliner chair — sounds like a plan, right?

Thanks to exotic private beach locations, significantly cheaper costs, and the pristine beauty of the sea, cruise weddings are gaining much popularity nowadays. However, planning a wedding on a cruise ship isn’t a cakewalk as it may seem. So, if you are not sure where to begin planning for your cruise wedding, fret not.

Check out this complete guide on planning cruise weddings:

Know Where To Get Married On A Cruise

Wedding planning 101: Know that your wedding will be considered legal only when you plan it within a country. This means your ceremony won’t be legal while you are sailing in the open seas. So, having it onboard at your home port before the cruise sails is a good idea. You can also plan your wedding at another port, or choose a private beach which lies along the cruise’s scheduled route. Opt for one of these spots to tie the knot:

  • On an open deck with sea views
  • An open atrium with 360-degree built-in space for the audience

weddings at cruise

Image Source: ayanakomodo

Legal Requirements For Getting Married On A Cruise

One of the biggest hurdles to cross while planning cruise weddings is to make sure you have a captain or someone else, onboard who could certify and be able to officiate your wedding. If you are planning to get married at a cruise, you must follow the laws of the country where the ship is registered. Be sure to do your research, talk to a travel agent who specializes in weddings, and apply for licenses far in advance.

cruise weddings

Image Source: Isrrani photography

Also, don’t forget to research international laws and navigate through foreign government regulations depending on your location. For example, if you are getting married on a port or an island, the laws of that port city will be followed. 

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What’s The Ideal Duration Of Cruise Weddings?

Generally, ship cruises range from:

  • 3 – 6 Nights 
  • 7 Nights 
  • 8 – 13 Nights 
  • 14+ Nights 

So, if you are planning a cruise wedding with your close friends and family, a 3-6 nights cruise is sufficient since everyone on your guest list will have to plan their vacation beforehand.

Timeline Of Planning A Cruise Wedding?

Since cruise weddings are much in rage, make sure you book early to avoid a sold-out sailing or extra holiday surcharges. It is recommended to plan your wedding on a cruise at least 9 months in advance taking into account the best seasons to sail. Make sure you talk to your travel expert to plan the cruise wedding during the most suitable months. 

cruise wedding planning

Image Source: meenal d rock

Also, once the dates are finalized, convey the same to your guests ASAP. This will allow them adequate time to plan their time off from work, manage family schedules, and more.

Also, check out The Ultimate Wedding Planning Checklist.

What Cruise Line You Should Pick? 

Since cruise lines like Royal Caribbean (00 1 305-341-0204), Carnival ((800) 764-7419), or Princess (1-800-774-6237) host many weddings on cruises and have full departments dedicated to group travel, you can never go wrong with them. However, if their packages don’t fit your pocket, try coordinating with your wedding planner and travel agent to look out for other options.

cruise ships

Image Source: ayanakomodo

Where To Book Your Cruise From?

There are multiple ways to book your cruise:

  • Direct booking from a cruise line website
  • Online travel booking platforms like CruiseDirect, Travelocity, or Expedia
  • Calling the cruise line’s reservation center
  • Use a travel agent 

Average Cost Of A Cruise Wedding?

Planning a cruise wedding is cheaper than planning a wedding on land. (Yes, you will save a lot as compared to other types of destination weddings). An average cost of planning a cruise wedding is INR 7-8 Lacs whereas an average in-home wedding costs around INR 25-30 Lacs. 

P.S. A cruise wedding is a great option for the budget-conscious couple. However, they can be as elaborate as you would want them to be. For example, you can add water sports or port city visits to your package to enhance your experience.

ShaadiWish Tip: Book your cruise as a group since it is cost-effective. Cruise lines offer various deals and offer for groups, especially if traveling for a wedding. Deals can include a free room for the bride and groom, an onboard private reception area, dinner seating arrangements, free cocktails, and other welcome gifts for your wedding party.

Make Sure You Hire A Wedding Planner

You can either hire a cruise ship planner to help with the arrangements or book a wedding planner that specializes in destination weddings. Just make sure you select someone who has done a destination wedding at the port of call that you are interested in. Plan your destination wedding with ShaadiWish and leave behind all the stress. 

planning a cruise wedding

Image Source: Isrrani photography

Have A Plan B

Weather is generally unpredictable. And, no matter how organised you are, sometimes during bad weather conditions, cruise ships may not stop at your preferred ports. Therefore, if you are planning to get married at a port of call, you may want to keep a plan B. 

Final Checks

About a month before the actual departure, make sure to call the cruise line to finalize all the details. Reconfirm how many people are attending the wedding and how many you are expecting to cruise along.

weddings at cruise

Image Source: meenal d rock

Planning cruise weddings is not difficult if you have the right wedding planner by your side. Though it can be time-consuming at the beginning. Once you have finalized your cruise and destination, the rest is fairly simple. 

Book Best Wedding Planners for your wedding day.

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Shivangi Goel

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