Your wedding in New Zealand
What style of wedding?
“New Zealand’s relaxed marriage laws allow small wedding parties to use venues and locations that are not suitable for larger weddings – like National Parks – so there are so many options,” says Minetta Hope, of The Wedding Company. “You can fly by helicopter to a spectacular mountaintop near Queenstown or within Aoraki Mt Cook National Park, or sail the crystal clear blue waters of Abel Tasman National Park to a secluded beach or island. More traditional options include a quaint stone church on the edges of Lake Tekapo – complete with views of the Southern Alps.”
How long does it take to get there?
London to Auckland takes around 25 hours, to Wellington it’s 29 and 30 to Christchurch.
What time of year is best?
Summer (December-March) is the most popular time. “The weather is generally warmer and more stable in February and March,” says Minetta. “Although cooler than summer, the weather in April and November is still good, and you also miss the holiday crowds. Winter is good for white weddings.”
“New Zealand is one of the easiest and most hassle-free countries in the world to get married in,” says Minetta. “There are no residency requirements – you just need to lodge a Notice of Intended Marriage Form with the government. You’ll also need any divorce or death certificates relating to previous spouses.” Upon arrival in New Zealand, one of you must sign a statutory declaration in order to receive a marriage licence and Particulars of Marriage forms which you sign on your wedding day. There is an excellent summary of all the requirements here.
Getting married in New Zealand is great value for money. “The majority of our couples pay between NZ$5,000 (£1,950) and NZ$10,000 (£3,900).”
The UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office: www.ukinnewzealand.fco.gov.uk
New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade: mfat.govt.nz/Embassies/2-Foreign-Embassies/index.php
New Zealand Department of Internal Affairs: bdm.govt.nz
New Zealand tourist board: www.newzealand.com
Wedding planners or specialist operators
The Wedding Company: www.theweddingcompany.co.nz
Bridge & Wickers: www.bridgeandwickers.co.uk
Find honeymoon operators near you in the Y&YW Directory.
Find the perfect honeymoon destinations in the Y&YW Directory.