Heather Menzies

January 31, 2022

How much does it really cost to elope?

The Blog

Having a wedding is expensive – that’s nothing new. According to the 2022 Annual Wedding Industry Report published by Easy Weddings, the average wedding cost in Western Australia is $30,045. Before you start smashing open your piggy bank, let me tell you about an alternative you may have never considered. If you’re not keen on the idea of spending your life savings on one day, eloping may be for you! So how much does it cost to elope?

First of all, what is an elopement?

Elopements are small wedding ceremonies that can include up to 10 guests, or no guests at all. The small guest list is a major factor for the lower price point. They often take place in nature locations, like national parks, which are usually free to use.

Couple eloping in Lesmurdie Falls National Park

Average cost to elope in Australia

The cost of eloping can vary depending on what you plan to do. You can make your day as elaborate or laid back as you want. That’s the beauty of elopements, everyone’s dream day will look completely different. To give you an idea, on average expect to spend around $8,000 – $15,000.

This includes the following expenses:

  • Ceremony Venue Hire: $0 – $5,000 
  • Celebrant: $650 – $1,800
  • Elopement Photographer: $600 – $5,000
  • Flowers: $300 – $1,200
  • Videographer: $600 – $5,000
  • Champagne & Nibbles: $150 – $400
  • Hair & Makeup: $120 – $300

Keep in mind, you’ll also need to budget for outfits, rings, the reception venue or restaurant for celebrating after your ceremony, travel costs and accommodation. In the end, eloping costs half if not less than having a full wedding.

Couple having wedding photos in front of Mossman park boat shed

My elopement budget breakdown

When our big wedding was cancelled, thanks to Covid, we decided to elope instead. It was a real blessing in disguise. The intimacy and adventure of eloping was incredible and it cost half of what we were originally planning to spend!

Here is a breakdown of how much it cost us to elope:

  • Ceremony Venue Hire: $0 
  • Celebrant: Included with elopement photography package
  • Elopement Photographer: $3,000
  • Flowers: $250
  • Champagne & Nibbles: $60
  • Hair & Makeup: $250
  • Outfits: $3000
  • Wedding rings: $1450
  • Dinner: $200

Total = $8,210

I knew having an amazing photographer was my priority, so that was the first thing we booked and I based the rest of the budget around them. Our second splurge was on dinner. We wanted to celebrate our marriage in style and with great food.

I don’t regret any of the spendings on our elopment. Every dollar was spent on things that were important to us and that made our day feel extra special.

If you’re curious to hear more about my elopement story you can read it here!

My elopement story
My husband & I eloping in Bells Rapids – Photo by Folk Tales

Next steps

In conclusion, by ditching the big wedding and eloping instead you could save up to $15,000! The cost of your elopement depends on how elaborate your plans are, but either way, you can expect to spend significantly less than what you would on a full wedding.

I hope this helped give you a starting point for your eloping planning. If you’re ready to get started on your elopement journey, get in touch! I can’t wait to help you have the best day of your life and document every precious moment xx

Photo by Caitlin Ruth Creative

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