Achieving your dream destination wedding isn’t without a few detours along the way. Depending on your country of choice, this often involves spending a ridiculous amount of time just getting your legal documents submitted and approved, effectively delaying your planned nuptials for months. Now, if you’re not one to weather through the agonizing wait, fret not because there are quite a few countries out there with more lax wedding laws to choose from.
Consider these five countries below and tie the knot hassle-free.
1. The Bahamas
The Bahamas has kept up its title of being the World’s Leading Wedding Destination for 2015 and 2018, and continues its reign this 2019, as awarded by the World Travel Awards. With its idyllic dry and warm weather, azure waters, and refreshing beaches laden with white and pink sands, the accolade comes as no surprise, especially when the marriage requirements for foreigners seem to be lax in comparison with most countries.
Couples may apply for a marriage license a day after they land in the Bahamas. As for guests who arrive via cruise ship, they must secure a letter from their ship’s Guest Services stating that they’ve been in Bahamian territory for 24 hours. You will then be guaranteed your marriage license the next day after applying, which is valid for 90 days. Meaning, you’ll definitely have plenty of time to enjoy the islands for your honeymoon right after getting hitched.
Click here for a complete list of Bahamas' marriage license requirements.
2. Puerto Rico
Another tropical destination to consider is Puerto Rico where no minimum length of residency is required. Aside from the usual official documents such as your valid passports, IDs, and birth certificates, you’ll only really need to worry about three crucial documents before you can say I do.
This includes a medical clearance as proof that you’re both healthy enough to get married as issued by doctors from your home country. Secondly, you’ll need a sworn affidavit stating that you’re visiting Puerto Rico for the sole purpose of getting married and will return home thereafter. Lastly, you’re required to purchase an Internal Revenue Stamp from one of their colecturias (government offices) to be included once you submit all your paperwork at the Demographic Registry Office at the Fernandez Juncos Station in San Juan.
Click here for a full list of Puerto Rico's marriage license requirements.
Whether it’s a civil or religious wedding you’re out for, you can easily have your dream nuptials in the sunny archipelago of Malta. This quaint island has everything from over 300 churches, to serene beaches, and more modern villas and five-star hotels. They even boast of grand scenic castles for couples who have their hearts set on a royal wedding motif.
No minimum residency is required for you to get hitched in Malta. Simply fill out Form RZ1 to be submitted to the Marriage Registry in Valetta or Gozo to secure a marriage application. Take note though that your application must be received at least six weeks before your planned wedding date, but not more than three months before.
As far as wedding locations are concerned, you might love the intricate interiors of Pallazzo Paraiso, the gorgeous Castello Zammitello Villa, or the romantic gardens of Villa Bologna.
Click here for a full list of marriage license requirements.
Yet another island to consider declaring your vows in is Mauritius. You’ll only need to reside in the country for one day before getting the green light for your nuptials. Make sure though to get your documents in a month before your proposed wedding date. For foreign nationals, this includes applying to the Civil Status Division to state that you are not a resident of Mauritius. In order to obtain this, you must submit the required official documents to the Registrar of Civil Status where a notice of your marriage will be posted thereafter before you’re finally allowed to marry the following day, granted all your paperwork has been received.
Click here for a full list of Mauritius' marriage license requirements.
If you’re not one for getting hitched in a tropical island nation, how about going for a Scandinavian country like Denmark, a.k.a. the Las Vegas of Europe? After acquiring a Schengen visa, a wedding in Denmark is pretty much a walk in the park as they require minimal documents to approve your marriage license. Depending on the town hall of your choice, the waiting period ranges as quickly as from a minimum of two days to a maximum of two weeks.
Pertinent documents you’ll need include your passport, Schengen visa, residence permit from your home country, a certificate of your marital status, and your birth certificates.
A famous location to get married in is the Kronborg Castle in the town of Helsingor. Rife with history and oozing with medieval sophistication, the castle is most known to many as Elisnore, a.k.a. the setting of William Shakespeare’s Hamlet.
Click here for a full list of Denmark's marriage license requirements.