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Everything You Need to Know About Eloping in Portugal

April 10, 2020

Every year we do several elopements in Portugal and we always say that even though we love planning bigger weddings, intimate small ones are our favorites! It saves years of stress and we can have such outside-of-the-box ideas. Because when you are doing something just for yourself you are more authentic.

The elopement gives the couple the freedom to be themselves and to have more fun. Eloping never made more sense than now. It’s such a good memento to talk about it! There are a few questions that some of our couples usually do that may help you understand what’s an elopement and how it goes on the day.

Talking about money, how much do I spend in an elopement and what’s included? 

As like all of our weddings, there’s such a big price range that you can count on spending when you are doing a wedding. That depends on a lot on the vendors you hire, the location you choose and the number of details you would like to introduce on the day. Also, if you have an elopement with just the two of you it’s different than having a few guests. Our elopements can go from 2 to 10 people, more or less. Our couples usually spend around 10.000-20.000€ at their wedding. That value includes the wedding planning service, event design with rentals and flowers, small graphic design details, photo, video, venue and accommodation from 1 to 3 days, cake made by a cake designer, makeup and hair artist, a celebrant and the menu. We plan the wedding as it was a bigger one: find a date, book the place, hire and manage all the vendors, design the event and build a timeline, coordinate everyone on the day and do the assembling and disassembly. Most of our vendors have special fees for elopements what's helpful.

And if I have a lower budget? 

Our minimum spendings allow us to provide you with the best service possible with the right vendors for you. We can not compromise on making your wishes come true if we don’t have room for it. It’s always best to compromise on the number of services you want for the day that on the quality and having more for less. We can not make to your expectations, by seeing our portfolio, and give you the same service for a lower price. Unforgettable memories can have its price and we like to make sure that we work with the best locations and vendors in Portugal.

Do I need to have all the vendors? Does it work as a package? 

No, at all. That’s why our weddings can have such different final breakdowns in terms of costs. It all depends on your budget and on your wishes. If you want a ceremony with a celebrant, a violin, photo, video and sparkling wine and cake at the end, you can have it, but we also have couples that only say their vows, exchange rings and do their photos. Every extra is optional and you can customise your wedding according to your wishes. As we say, there are never two weddings alike. We do everything from scratch and just for you.

Do you only do weddings in Lisbon? 

Most of our weddings are in Lisbon or close by like Sintra and Alentejo, but every year we have a few weddings in the north and south of Portugal. We don’t work with a close list of venues so that allows us to be available for weddings all over Portugal or even abroad. You just have to keep in mind that the further we are from our base location the most money you will spend on staff expenses, not just for us but for a few vendors if they are also from Lisbon (dislocation fee, accommodation and meals).

How can I have a breakdown of the costs of the wedding? 

If you are interested in eloping or even doing a regular wedding we always do a Skype meeting before giving a quote. On that meeting, we will discuss your vision and requirements for the day. After that, to help you translating your budget into the wedding day we give you price ranges for all the services you may need, along with our suggestions of venues on the styled you described us. That way you can already be sure about your decision on getting married here. Further in time, after the booking, you give us your feedback on the list of venues you liked the most and we get back to you with a complete breakdown of expenses for that location, getting the final sum for the wedding (pending on your options for the vendors and decoration but based on our experience).

Is easy to have privacy on an elopement? 

Totally! If you hire the right people you will have a good amount of options that give you that private moment on the wedding day. Even with bigger hotels. The best is always having space with a big garden and beautiful corners. We also have options where you can rent a nice bed and breakfast and have space all to yourself. 

Do I need to keep a secret? 

Not exactly. We have a lot of couples that elopes because they don’t are the kind of people that likes to be the centre of the attentions and don’t even want a big wedding (besides the reason that is a really budget-friendly option versus doing a big wedding). They are just looking into spending a good time together and celebrating their love on their intimacy, with no pressures or demands from family and friends. So they let their family know in advance and do a wedding plus honeymoon all on the same trip. And you can still announce it to the world! It's always a good idea to do an announcement in place of an invitation. It makes family and friends feel included in the big day even if they weren’t physically there.

Will I completely lose the magic not celebrating with my loved ones on the day? 

None of that... a lot of our couples organize a big dinner party to share that moment with their friends when they get back home. Even later you can do something bigger. Sometimes the timings on our lives are very different from year to year and that gives you the freedom to not wait until you have a big chunk of money together. Elope now, do a bigger wedding later, or do a bigger wedding and later elope. Why not?


Do I need to get married to elope?

Sometimes we have couples that just want to do a vow renewal alone or with their close friends and family on a very small event. You don’t need to put a ring on it to celebrate. We have couples that are already married or even never get legally married, and they just sign that day as a celebration of what brings them together. The act of telling the other person what he/she means to you is reason enough to do something special. Even if you are already married and you didn't have the chance to do what you wanted on your original wedding this can be a good opportunity to get wild. There are no rules on love!


Do you help planning the trip?

We don't organise vacations, but we already were hired before to help planning a honeymoon! But for real, we always help our couples with their doubts about transportation, good places to go, to eat and to stay. We actually have a file with our recommendations all over Portugal (although more focused in Lisbon, where we are base on). So even if you need some guidance about how to navigate around our country we are your friends and it's our pleasure to give you our best tips.

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