Although many couples forego the planning, pack up their bags and fly to the nearest epic location they can get to in 24 hours the majority of eloping couples actually plan pretty far in advance! Almost farther in advance than a “regular” wedding. Simply because of travel. Travel rates and expenses can be super pricey last minute, as can a photographer and an off-the-rack dress or suit that fits you perfectly enough to hike a trail or not get ruined in your backpack.
We all know, the further you book a flight, place to stay, transportation, etc. in advance the more money you are likely to save. Which explains the reason why Eloping can be super affordable, yet super epic.
When you’re planning an elopement you should also think about what region you want to elope in and when their busy season is (if they have one).
For example, in the Midwest, you will most commonly find couples Eloping in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, at the Sand Dunes or Hocking Hills State Park in Ohio. Our busiest time of year in the Midwest is definitely July through September. Which means transportation prices will most likely be higher, and hotel rooms or airbnb’s may be booked for months in advance.
(pictured below - left: pictured rocks, MI. pictured - right: hocking hills state park, OH)
This is one of the sole reasons why to plan your Elopement in advance. In fact, on average most engaged couples started planning their Elopements 1 to 2 years in advance.
This is likely due to cost of travel to the region you plan on eloping in, along with other factors like finding the perfect elopement dress, booking an elopement photographer in advance (because you’ll want to snatch the perfect photographer for your elopement before they are booked) and researching any permits or licenses you might need to get married in a certain location.
When you Elope close to home, your timeline can be a bit more quick, because travel costs will be low and you can be pretty flexible. Most couples who tend to arrange their elopements months or years in advance are probably eloping somewhere epic or having a crazy adventure elopement that (quite literally) needs to be planned. The chances of you and your significant other running off the buy plane tickets to Africa to Elope in Kenya in even 3 weeks is possible, but doesn’t have a high probability of working out the way you want it to.
(pictured below - Giraffe Manor in Nairobi, Kenya because how cool of a place to elope if you really did decide to go to Africa!?)