Your love story is unique …
To make sure your wedding ceremony is just as unique, secure the marriage officer’s service once you have booked the venue, so you have enough time to plan this important part of your wedding day. Make sure the marriage officer is registered at Home affairs and is familiar with Home Affairs regulations.
Discuss in detail the criteria of your ceremony, but also make sure that the marriage officer will complete the marriage register which you will sign with two witnesses on your wedding day. It is important to receive a South African marriage certificate on your wedding day and confirm that the marriage officer will register your marriage personally at Home Affairs within three working days of your wedding.
To keep in mind when planning your ceremony
- Plan the ceremony set up once you know the venue because it is important to have enough space for the couple and the bridal party as well as the photographer and videographer to easily move around.
- If you have a musician, band or string quartet, make sure there is enough space to accommodate them and for everyone to enjoy their performance.
- Reserve seats for parents/grandparents and the bridal party (if they will be seated). Ask a person who knows these guests to direct them to their seats.
- Make sure the bridal party knows where to stand and what role they will play before, during and after the ceremony.
- Ensure that the best man will have water close by – you need to plan for the unforeseen.
- It might come in handy if the groom, maid of honour or parent close by have tissues ready.
- Make sure that the registration table is big enough for signing the register. Use the bride’s bouquet as décor to save costs.
- Discuss all details before, during and after the ceremony with the marriage officer. He/she needs to be informed in order to take responsibility for the order of service.
- Inform the marriage officer of all those involved with the ceremony: DJ, musician, videographer, photographer, wedding planner and any other party who might be doing a reading/poem etc.
- Your vows should be meaningful, so take the time to write them. The focus during the ceremony is after all on you, the couple.
- Make sure to have a plan B if you have an outside ceremony so you do not have to stress on the day if the weather does not play along.
So much planning goes into your wedding day, so remember that it should be about your love for each other and your future together. So enjoy every moment of your special day.