How Much Does Eloping Cost?

Money makes the world go ’round and in order to respect it, you have to be intentional with what you’re expecting from it. Your partner asked if you’d spend forever with them, and you’ve said yes, but now you have no idea how much this is about to cost ya. You just know that spending tons of money on one day with hundreds of on-lookers and racking up thousands of dollars of debt was not how you wanted to start your future together. Take a dive in here and see just how much does eloping cost.

Getting married and vowing your love for one another doesn’t have to mean eating ramen noodles and PBJs for the next year. Did you know that traditional weddings are running upwards of $20,000 to $30,000 according to Zola?!

that’s 5,000 coffees at Starbucks…or brand-new car…or 75 round trip plane tickets.

You know what’s a better idea? Getting married in one of the most beautiful places on earth while also crafting the most wildly romantic and authentically ‘you’ portraits could cost you less than that! The bottom dollar is the cost of eloping is based solely on what your budget will allow. Can you get married for less than $5,000? It definitely possible! Let’s break it down.


This calculator will give you a roundabout estimated cost of what it would be to elope! Of course, the more detailed and elaborate you go, the more it will cost. I recommend have a little wiggle room to accommodate for any extra expenses that may arise as well.


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Elopement Cost Breakdown

When you opt for a non-traditional approach to your wedding day, you also say goodbye to some of the traditional expenses that come with having a larger wedding (with 50+ guests). Here’s a list of things to think about when planning your destination wedding or elopement. These will have you questioning how much does eloping cost versus having a traditional wedding.

Traditional Wedding (in Alabama)

Venue $3,000-$10,000

Catering $15-$100/per guest

Florals $1,000-$4,000

Cake/Desserts $500+

Photographer $3,000+

Videographer $2,000+

Wedding Attire $2,000+

Hair & Makeup $300+

Entertainment $1,000-$3,000

Stationary-Invites, RSVP, stamps $500

Gifts for guest $1000+

Wedding Planner $500

Licenses $100

Officiant $150+

Wedding Insurance $200+

Elopement or Destination Wedding

Venue (Permits) $0-$150

Dinner or Private Chef $50-$200/hr.

Bouquet Only $200

Cake & Champagne for 2 $75

Photographer $3,000+

Videographer $2,000+

Wedding Day Outfits $300+

Hair & Makeup $0-$200

Marriage License $100

Travel (Airbnb, Plane tickets) $0-$1,000+

Optional: Officiant $100+

These are rough estimates on things you can count on spending your money for to complete wedding day. Some elopement photographers act as multiple different vendors which will allow for even more savings. Finding one that is ordained as well as one that is a natural born planner, (hello, it’s me!), can allow you even more savings!

Getting married can still be extravagant but in your own unique way. Knowing why you want to elope and knowing what you value ultimately will help decided which path is best for you and your partner. Are you scared to elope because you don’t know how to include your family? Snag my FREE guide with ideas on how to include family on your elopement.

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