According to a study The Know did, the average cost of a traditional wedding is $34,800.

As an adventure wedding and elopement photographer, I’ve been a part of elopements from just the couple to weddings with over 200 guests, I want to share with you what I’ve learned over the year about the cost of weddings and elopements.

Important To Know: What is an Adventure Elopement? And How Much Does It Really Cost?

Let’s get down to it : Just like everything in life, everyone has different budget, the cost can vary depending on what you truly value. No matter much money you spend on your wedding/elopement day doesn’t say anything about who you are or what your values are. This blog is to share with you the average cost for an adventure elopement and what you get from investing in such.

What is an Elopement, and does it cost more then the courthouse?

An adventure elopement is far different from a courthouse elopement. An adventure elopement focuses on an intimate experience, so you can truly choose to celebrate your marriage in an adventurous and unique way. Maybe it’s hiking up the in mountains of Alaska to share your vows, maybe it’s a romantic picnic on the beach. It could be going to Sedona for the first time so you can experience something new together as a start of your marriage. You could be exchanging your vows in a country that you both have been dying to visit together. But most of all, your elopement day should be all about you and the experience that matters to you as a couple so you can create memories together in an authentic way that truly reflects the two you instead of what “traditions” should be.

Have you thought to yourselves "why do we need a bridal party?". Does the thought of inviting 300 guests and making sure everyone has a good time when you can’t remember the last time you spoke with them prior to your wedding day make you uncomfortable??

An adventure elopement doesn’t mean you need to ditch all traditions, it just means you get rid of the ones that don’t make sense to you, whereas you can keep the ones that you truly value.

With an adventure elopement with me, you are investing in what you truly want to truly experience.

Real Elopement vs Wedding Costs: The Break Down

Average Cost of An Elopement $13,425

What you’re paying for:

  • Photographer ~$2575
  • Wedding dress / attire ~$3,500
  • Not really a venue, just a wedding permit ~$150
  • Officiant ~$500
  • Flowers ~$500
  • Hair and Make Up ~$400
  • Caterers / Food for Guests (if you decide to have some) ~$500
  • Cake ~$300
  • Event Planner (some elopements with guests might need an elopement planner) ~$2,000
  • Travel and Accommodation ~$3000
  • An epic adventure & long lasting memories for you and your partner ~$Priceless
  • A personalized and authentic experience crafted for you ~$Priceless

Average Cost of A Traditional Wedding: $39,275

What you’re paying for:

  • Photographer ~$2575
  • Wedding dress / attire ~$3,500
  • Venue ~ $10,000
  • DJ / Band ~$1,500
  • Officiant ~$500
  • Flowers ~$3,000
  • Hair and Make Up ~$400
  • Caterers / Food for Guests ~$10,000
  • Cake ~$1500
  • Event Planner ~ $2,500
  • Travel and Accommodation ~$800

Adventure Elopement: What Are You Really Paying For? And How Much Are You Saving?

As you can see in the table above, the true cost of a wedding photographer and elopement photographer are exactly the same. In fact, my elopement and wedding packages are exactly the same. If you book me for an adventure elopement you get 2 full days of 10-hours of elopement coverage, it would cost the exact same amount another couple who books me for their 10-hour wedding day.

This is because most of the time, in an elopement, your photographer is more than just that, I am also your planner, coordinator, resource, the main point of contact for all your questions and concerns.

A skilled elopement photographer often spends countless hours of research to scout out the most beautiful locations to elope, unique Airbnbs to stay that fit your personality and vibe, best time for light and photos in the region, and finding vendors around the area to bring your vision to life.

In terms of photography, you are paying exactly the same.

In terms of everything else, you’re saving the money on a venue, and OTHER miscellaneous personnel's related to having a venue and catering. You’re no longer OBLIGATED TO feed hundreds of guests. You’re no longer decorating tables, venue space, AND ceremony sites so that your wedding doesn’t look so empty. In most cases, almost all of my couples use that money to spend on an adventure, experience, and honeymoon.