Florida Elopements and Intimate Weddings During COVID

It happens with EVERY wedding – one day the wedding planning is going swimmingly, and the next, you’re considering running away and eloping on a mountain. Just as Florida elopements and intimate weddings started to trend, it became mainstream.

Now that COVID-19 is a worldwide pandemic, more and more couples are choosing to elope or drastically cut their guest lists.

BUT THAT’S NOT A BAD THING!

As a Florida elopement photographer, my heart breaks for couples (especially Sonju Photography couples) that have been forced to make hard decisions at this time. It’s not fair. To have spent years daydreaming, planning, and building excitement for such an amazing wedding day and then to have it all coming to a screeching halt just fucking sucks.

And while 2020 couples scramble to postpone or downsize their wedding, newly engaged couples are trying to secure 2021 dates. And some venues and vendors are limiting their availability so they can remain profitable, making it even trickier.

But weddings aren’t about the number of guests, the fancy food in weird glassware, the seventeen bridesmaids, or how luxurious the venue is. Weddings are about the couple. Their story. Love. (Ok that’s enough mushiness for now)

Intimate weddings and elopements in Florida are just as magical

WHAT’S HAPPENING

COVID has thrown couples and south Florida wedding vendors into a tailspin. Postponements, cancellations, and major planning changes during this uncertain time has forced everyone to truly focus on what’s most important – and how to do it safely and legally.

As of this blog post (and I’ll update as things change), South Florida has opened most non-essential businesses, but we’re still limited to gatherings with 50 or fewer people. So while I can still bang out beautiful album designs and get 2021 couples on the books, I can’t legally (or safely) photograph any large events…

But that doesn’t mean weddings and gatherings are cancelled. Many couples are shifting to “micro-monies”, micro-weddings, or true elopements. Other couples are honoring their original wedding date with a small ceremony and reception some time next year.

Elope to Miami, the Florida Keys, or anywhere in South Florida
Some of the sweetest events I’ve photographed had less than four people in attendance, myself included. And honestly, I’m welcoming the change and look forward to the smaller events and intimate ceremonies.

ELOPE NOW, PARTY LATER.

To me, there’s nothing more romantic than getting ready together and comforting each other as the nerves set in.

Reciting your vows to just your partner.

Or hearing the water lap against the shore as you hold their hands.

And really loving on each other as you grab some photos around town after the ceremony (without worrying about signature cocktails or the off-white dress your aunt decided to wear to the reception)

If your plans have shifted and you’re now thinking about eloping to Miami or somewhere else in the South Florida area, I’d love to chat! Or if you’re full steam ahead with your 2021 plans to fill up a ballroom with all of your favorite people, LET’S DO IT.

Either way, you’ll be married. And I can’t wait to photograph such a special day in your lives.

Couple's hands with their new wedding bands as they sit on the dock at a private home in Key Largo shortly after their intimate wedding ceremony

Have your wedding plans changed? Considering Miami or another Florida destination for your intimate wedding? Elopement packages start at just $850. Click the link below to get in touch!

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