Whats the difference between a symbolic or legal destination wedding

difference between symbolic and legal wedding
  1. Home
  2. Planning a wedding
  3. Whats the difference between a symbolic or legal destination wedding

Written by Wendy Wharton

A symbolic wedding and a legal destination wedding differ in terms of their legal implications and requirements. Here’s an explanation of each:


  1. Symbolic Destination Wedding:

A symbolic destination wedding is a ceremonial or symbolic celebration of marriage that does not have any legal or official recognition. Couples often choose this option when they want to have a destination wedding in a location other than their home country but do not wish to navigate the legal complexities and requirements of getting legally married in a foreign jurisdiction. In this case, couples usually complete the legal marriage process in their home country before or after the symbolic ceremony. The symbolic wedding can be personalized and tailored to the couple’s preferences, without being bound by legal restrictions.


  1. Legal Destination Wedding:

A legal destination wedding involves getting married in a foreign country or jurisdiction that recognizes the marriage as legally valid. In this case, the couple’s marriage is legally recognized by the government of the destination country, and they receive a marriage certificate that is legally binding. Legal destination weddings require compliance with the legal procedures, documentation, and requirements of the destination country. These requirements can vary significantly depending on the country and may involve paperwork, residency periods, blood tests, translations, and other legal formalities. Couples considering a legal destination wedding should research and understand the specific requirements of their chosen destination in advance to ensure they meet all the necessary criteria.


It’s important to note that the legal requirements and procedures for destination weddings can vary greatly from country to country. Some destinations have relatively straightforward processes, while others may have complex legal systems and require extensive paperwork. Therefore, it is advisable to consult with the relevant authorities or seek professional assistance, such as a wedding planner or legal advisor, to navigate the legal requirements effectively.

You May Also Like…