'I did it my way': How to plan a wedding in Vegas!
Flight Centre International Travel Consultant Eva Martin has meticulously created her dream wedding in Las Vegas. Here she shares with us why she made that decision and how you can do it too!
Like every little girl, I had always dreamed of my big white wedding day. But like many brides-to-be, it sooned dawned on me that the extravagant English wedding just didn’t sit well with me. The expense and decadence of weddings since the dawn of the celebrity magazine deal, had got out of control and after speaking with other brides, it seemed that a budget of £10000 would achieve only a basic wedding. The thought of spending £10000 that I didn’t have, on just one day, was incredulous!
So I started thinking of alternatives. I made a list of what was important to me and what I liked about other weddings I’d been too. I soon realised that for all of the cost and extravagance, how many flowers, cakes, napkins, favours could anyone actually recall? And at £250 for a basic wedding cake, the decision was easy.
My auntie had been planning her 60th birthday out in Vegas for a while and it seemed like perfect timing. I had always fancied the idea of Vegas. No fuss, no stress. A place where you could do as little or as much as you wanted. Sure, it offered over the top lavishness but where better place to get married than the Wedding capital of the world with an average of 120,000 ceremonies taking place each year. And if it was good enough for The King, it was good enough for me.
When I told people, there were the usual Elvis serenading me down the aisle jokes and turning up drunk at 3am to make a decision that you would later regret. But Vegas gives you the chance to do everything your way. From spending £20,000 to get married in the Bellagio chapel to a drive-thru taking you from single to married in just 10 minutes.
We started by looking at chapels and it soon became clear that this is very much America and not the UK. Their style is very different to our nation of churches. We looked through hundreds of chapels, reviews and advice and eventually made the decision of the classic Little White Wedding Chapel. This is perhaps the most famous of all the chapels in Vegas. Vegas’ only shortcoming is the lack of good photographers. This was so important to us as we knew that not everyone would be able to make it to the big day. We really could not handle having incredibly cheesy poses complete with silk flowers and unflattering camera angles. This was one investment we knew people would remember more than a dress or cake. The Little White Wedding Chapel is one of the only chapels that allows you to take in an external photographer for a fee of $150. Another great thing about Vegas, is that you don’t have to conform with the typical staid poses. We’re having photos taken on the New York New York rollercoaster and in front of the Bellagio fountains, not to mention that we are travelling just outside to a deserted miner’s town called Nelson. I haven’t seen many photos of a bride and groom propping up 1950s style petrol pumps!
I looked at wedding dresses to hire out there and whilst there were plenty of good options, I was a bit nervous to leave it until the last minute. Instead, I found a great option with Alfred Angelo who makes wedding dresses particularly for destination weddings. They are light enough to take with you and generally the same price as hiring. I will still be getting a little part of my childhood day dream!
We’ll be staying at the Paris hotel. It’s a great option right on the strip and echoes of our engagement which took place up the Eiffel tower. It offers enough low-key romance to mark the occasion and suits us as a couple.
One of my only worries was that not everyone in my family would be able to come. However, I soon realised long-lost aunties were making all types of excuses to get to Vegas! They know they’ll enjoy the holiday as much as we’ll enjoy the wedding and it means that the occasion isn’t just about one day.
Perhaps the greatest bonus of marrying in Vegas is our honeymoon in the national parks afterwards. We are spending 4 days in log cabins with breath-taking views across Monument Valley, Zion National Park and the Grand Canyon. I have always found it peculiar that weddings are so stressful, people need a holiday after it just to relax and recuperate! After our stress-free wedding, Jon and I are going to start our new adventure riding off in to the sunset, tin cans and just married stickers and all!