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Weddings in South Africa

Sun, sand and safari when you organise a South African wedding

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Your wedding in South Africa

What style of wedding?

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“South Africa has so much to offer for different style weddings,” says Sally Haines of Cape Town-based Weddings Abroad. “There are the stunning coastlines and beaches, winelands, mountains and game reserves. Our international couples tend to request outdoor ceremonies followed by afternoons in the sun that flow into an evening dinner function.” 

How long does it take to get there?

Cape Town is an 11- to 12-hour flight from London. And you just head south, so no jet-lag!

What time of year is best?

“The best time is from the start of October through to the end of April,” says Sally. “In Cape Town, we call March ‘Wedding Month’! The best two months in my opinion are April – due to the vineyards being full of grapes and beautiful in pictures – and November, when there is little wind – perfect for beach weddings.”

Legal considerations?

“There are no set rules to how long you need to be in the country before the wedding, but we suggest a minimum of three working days to confirm all the legalities, make final preparations and to relax before the big day,” says Sally. You’ll need to take the following paperwork with you: a 10-year passport with more than 6 months left on it; full, original birth certificates; a Letter of Impediment from your home country; a Decree Absolute if divorced; a Death Certificate (original) if widowed, plus your previous original Marriage Certificate; written consent if under 18. You will need at least two witnesses at the wedding.

Anything else?

“Couples are drawn to South Africa by the weather and the exchange rate,” says Sally. “There are no real challenges when getting married in South Africa as long as you can entrust your wedding planning to the function manager at your venue or to a local wedding planner so they can be your eyes and ears while you are not in the country.”

Useful websites

The UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office: ukinsouthafrica.fco.gov.uk

South African tourist board: www.south-africa.net

South African Online Wedding Directory: www.celebration.co.za

SA Venues: www.sa-venues.com

Wedding planners or specialist operators

Weddings Abroad: www.weddingsabroad.co.za

Find honeymoon operators near you in the Y&YW Directory.

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