Ceremony Basics

Home

Our ceremonies are straight forward, simple, and follow a basic traditional western and American wedding format appropriate for beach weddings.

FYI: Hawaiians did not get married, there is no "traditional" Hawaiian wedding ceremony so, do not ask for a expect a "traditional" Hawaiian wedding. These "traditions" are simply made-up by wedding websites and officiates. With that said, there are some Hawaiian accents and traditions commonly done by locals during wedding ceremonies like the giving of lei, blowing of the Conch shell, and other Hawaiian elements that are a nice addition to any beach wedding in Hawaii.



Ceremony Type & Styles

Ceremony Types:

- Wedding/Marriage: Choose this ceremony if you want to be legally married in Hawaii. This will require that you make an applications for a marriage license from the State of Hawaii, pick it up, and bring it to the ceremony.

- Vow Renewal: Choose this ceremony if you are already married and want to celebrate your marriage of so many years.

- Wedding/Marriage Recreation: Choose this ceremony if you just got married and/or want to have another ceremony in Hawaii and not a vow renewal. A lot of times we're doing these for couple whose families do not know they are married yet :)

- Important: Choose either Male/Female or Same-Sex, so that we can assign the properly licensed officiate and one who has the proper ceremony for each couple or you may not have a ceremony otherwise and no money will be returned.


Ceremony Styles:

-
Romantic: This is a non-religious marriage ceremony.

FYI: Our officiates do a lot of weddings and a reference to God may slip out. It doesn't really happen often if at all but, if the mere mention of God offends you or simply telling the minister that you don't believe in God during the ceremony if it does, is a problem, we suggest you find another website.


- Romantic
Christian non-denominational:

This is a traditional non-denominational Christian based ceremony. It's for anyone who believes in God.

FYI: It's a ceremony for all peoples and denominations. Our minister's do not preach, do not do the laying of hands, read scripture, sing, etc. but, they do ask for God's blessing.


-
Romantic Hawaiian or Christian Hawaiian accented ceremony: We include Hawaiian elements to give your ceremony a uniquely Hawaiian feel. It includes in addition of Hawaiian, a Conch shell blowing (called a "Pu") by the officiate, and Hawaiian theme minister attire wrap or "Kihei" or the minister wearing a Hawaiian lei.

FYI: We may also add additional Hawaiian elements are an appropriate addition within the framework of our ceremonies. We generally don't do hula dancers, fire dancers, or sacrifices, unless, you ask :)


Details

When you fill out our Prices and Planning Order Form, you're going to select the "Ceremony Type" and the "Ceremony Style".

The "Ceremony Type" is pretty obvious and there is only one applicable selection. We need to know this to assign the properly licensed officiate.

You'll have several choices for your "Ceremony Style". If you do not make a selection, the default is our "Romantic non-religious ceremony".

All ceremonies are created to appeal to the greatest number of people and without offense i.e. none include anything which any normal person would object to hearing or repeating in a ceremony. FYI: Some websites scare you into believing you'll hear "obey" or other archaic wording.

Ceremonies are appropriately personal, but not mushy, thoughtful, but not "preachy". Actual wording will vary from officiate to officiate.

All ceremonies are the same in terms of format and differ only in certain parts and wording,

All ceremonies usually take about 8-12 minutes and depending upon specifics of the ceremony, ceremony style, and any other ceremony additions up to 12-15 minutes tops.

We do not have written copies of ceremonies to share or approve. Each officiate has their own proprietary "words" and these may vary from ceremony to ceremony depending upon the specifics. Additionally, while we may assign an officiate, that person may change by wedding day.

All ceremonies start with the short introduction (or conch blowing if Hawaiian style), a few words about marriage, commitment, and love, an "affirmation of intent" through the exchange of vows, an exchange of rings (if any), exchange of personal sentiments (if desired), a Hawaiian lei presentation (if any), the pronouncement, the 1st kiss, and certificate and license (if any) signing.

For a marriage, it's the officiate's legal duty to ask, "Do you take XXX to be your wife/husband" as an affirmation of intent and to hear the answer verbalized (and believe it's true LOL). This is done as the rings are exchanged (the sign of your commitment). If no rings, we do it during the lei exchange (if any). If a vow renewal, it's not a legal requirement.

No worries, you do not have to write "vows" but, we do allow time for you to exchange sentiments, expressions of love, or personal "vows" after the exchange of rings or during a lei exchange (if any). It can be as simple as a "I love you" or written. Just let the minister know that day.

FYI: In Hawaii, giving lei is a sign of love, respect, importance, honor, etc., given on special occasions. A Hawaiian lei presentation is also a great way to include your parents, children, and friends in your ceremony.



What Happens on Wedding Day?

- Be early, do not be late! If you arrive late or are not ready to proceed (or both), it's not going to be good, extra fees will apply, and services could be performed in part or not at all.

- If a marriage ceremony (not a vow renewal) bring your State of Hawaii issued marriage license to the ceremony. If you do not bring your license, we can do a ceremony but, you will not be legally married.
- Be early, do not be late! If you arrive late or are not ready to proceed (or both), it's not going to be good and extra fees will apply and/or services performed in part or not at all.

- If driving on your own, we'll be waiting to meet you at the designated meet spot (not the ceremony site). You'll see us sitting there and we'll flag you down.

-
Do not walk out to the ceremony site. Do not sit in your car. If you arrive early (suggested) and walk around, just make sure you come back on-time. Note: If using our transportation, no worries.

- Be ready to walk out to the ceremony site at the meet time, usually 15 minutes before the ceremony.

- We'll walk out to the ceremony location together.

- If you're parents or guests are late, we may have a few minutes to wait but, if not, we're gonna have to start. Starting late means late fees or service being shortened or not at all and no monies will be returned.

- If you owe a cash balance payment that day, you're going to give it to the lead site vendor, which is usually the photographer. Please have in exact amounts. If you forget the cash, you'll need to make payment after the ceremony by credit card using our website in the amount listed on your contract.

- The officiate and photographer will give you ceremony instructions just prior to the ceremony. We'll set you up "in-place" or give instructions for a processional if provided for on your contract. Once everything is set, the ceremony will start.

- No worries, just relax. Our minister and photographer will guide you through the ceremony.

-
After the ceremony, you'll sign the marriage license (if not a vow renewal), the officiate will certify it, take it. and electronically submit it to the State of Hawaii. The Health Dept. needs to process it and record it.

If you applied for your license on-line, you'll be able to download a temporary license usually, within 2-3 business days.

-
Your official certified marriage license will be mailed to you from the Heath Dept. in 30-45 days. If you paid to expedite processing, it will be sooner.



Answers to Common Questions

Can we exchange our own vows in our ceremony?

Yes. Let the minister/officiate know that you have special words to share.

We usually have couples do this during the lei exchange. FYI: As a matter of official duty and the law, the minister is required to ask you, "Do you take XXXX to be your wife/husband/partner?"



Can we approve the ceremony words and what's said?

No. Why not?

When you get married in a church or by a judge, they don't tell you the words, nor do you get a copy for your inspection and approval. Our officiates operate under the same principles.

Additionally:
- Each officiates has their own ceremony memorized.
- Ceremonies are proprietary to the officiate.
- Words spoken vary with the specifics of the ceremony.
- The assigned officiate may be replaced.

Consequently, knowing or approving the words is not possible. Just be assured that all of our officiates perform a ceremony with nothing that would be objectionable to the average person.



Can we get a copy of the ceremony after the wedding?

No, ceremony wording proprietary plus, exact ceremony wording varies from wedding to wedding. If you want to remember the exact words spoken, get our video service.



Can we tell the officiate what to say?

No.



Can we speak with the officiate?

No. Direct contact with our vendors is not part of our service and they may be replaced. All questions should be directed through us.

Note: To get the best price, we eliminate the vendor time for communicating with clients through email, phone calls, contracts, etc.. Simply, we/you get a better price without it.



Can we meet the minister?

Possible, but a meeting is not necessary and not included in the cost. You could meet the minister before but, it will cost you a minimum, as much as the service cost, up to you.

FYI: Meeting with us is also not necessary. Everything is on the contract and all the details are set when you make payment. Consequently, there should be need to meet and no final details to confirm. If there is, you used the wrong company LOL.



We "believe" but, don't want a really religious ceremony.

No worries. Our Romantic Christian ceremonies are a "lite" version religious ceremony.



We're not religious.

No worries. Select our romantic non-religious ceremony, no God.

With that said, we do not guaranty that a reference to "God" won't slip out. Our officiates do a lot of all kinds of weddings each day and sometimes the mention of Go just comes out. If this is a problem for you, don't book us! Most officiates mention a "higher power", "universe", etc. as part of their ceremony so, if you don't want this either, don't book us. We simply can't allow the outcome of our job hinge upon a inadvertent reference to "God".



Can we use our own Officiate/Minister?

No sorry. We've have had problems with that.


FYI:
Our officiates understand how we like our ceremonies performed, how we like to "set-up", and what we expect of our photographers, videographers, musicians, and other vendors. This enables our minister, photographer, videographer, and musician to perform at the highest level as an integrated team versus other websites who just hire a bunch of people assembled together to do their own individual thing.



Can we not see each other before the ceremony?

Yes. Order a processional. See our Prices and Planning Order Form.



Can we include cultural traditions in our ceremony?

Yes. You can add your own personal or cultural traditions but, let us know when we make your contract so we can schedule the extra time and cost for the time if any necessary.



Can we include our children?

Of course. We don't have any set way to include children, so let the officiate know and he'll include them as he see's fit. The best and simplest way is to include them is a lei presentation, a family sand ceremony, or a family prayer if you are having a Christian ceremony. Let us know on the Order Form and we'll assign our officiates who are best at this.