How To Plan A Cruise Wedding In 6 Steps

If you want to know how to plan a cruise wedding, consider these six steps to get your dream cruise wedding. Planning weddings on cruises can be overwhelming, especially if you’re doing it yourself instead of hiring a wedding planner. 

We will also discuss what you’ll need to get married on a cruise. But if you also want a ceremony by the shore, you can read how to plan a beach wedding

how to plan a cruise wedding


DIY Cruise Weddings: How To Plan A Cruise Wedding


Step 1. Planning the destination length

  • Start to plan the wedding location and the length of travel
  • Wedding cruises are available to different destinations, and the length of the cruise can also affect your wedding plans
  • Your wedding budget should influence your cruise length and destination
  • For the wedding location, it should be on board, port of call, and at the port of departure 
  • As for the cruise length, choose what applies to your budget and the type of wedding you want; the size of your guest list can also affect the cruise wedding length
  • Intimate weddings on a cruise can be between 3 to 6 days, while those who want to party with friends and family can go for 7 to 14 days, depending on budget and everyone’s time availability; remember that some guests can’t take time off work for a very long period  


Step 2. Plan the wedding date and book a cruise line

  • The next step for planning a cruise wedding is selecting the date based on the length you want
  • If you are limited with a budget, you should avoid peak season for cruise weddings
  • Consider asking your guests about the date that they’ll be comfortably free
  • Since you have no wedding planner, you will also arrange and find the cruise line for your wedding
  • Ask yourself the type of wedding you imagine with your guests
  • Select a cruise line that will allow destination weddings at a port of call
  • Compare various cruise ship companies to find the best value for money wedding package
  • Book your cruise for the wedding via their website, reservation center, travel agent, or an online booking platform like CruiseDirect for wedding cruises


Step 3. Acquire the legal needs for cruise weddings

  • After you have planned the destination, duration, and date, and booked the cruise line, the next step for planning a cruise wedding is to organize your wedding legalities and accomplish them
  • Learn the international laws for the marriage license you’ll need for your cruise wedding
  • Alternatively, you can get a quick civil wedding, so you don’t need to worry about your union being legal


Step 4. Send the cruise wedding invites

  • Like other weddings, you should notify your guests of your marriage plans ahead of time
  • Send the cruise wedding invitations 12 weeks before the wedding
  • You can choose a nautical theme for the cruise wedding invitations 
  • Provide information like the direction to the dock or wherever you’ll meet since you’ll use cruises 
  • Some weddings also happen in the port of departure, so consider some allowance when writing the time for the ceremony as the guests get to the ship


Step 5. Make the wedding website

  • After you arrange all the legalities, you should organize your wedding website
  • The website will contain all the information for the cruise wedding that you can’t write on the invitations
  • The cruise wedding website is not much different than the usual wedding website, but you can always elaborate on details like the dress code and activities to expect for the whole duration of the cruise


Step 6. Find wedding vendors and needs for cruise lines

  • The final step for planning a cruise wedding is booking the vendors
  • Check the vendors and wedding needs not included in the cruise ship wedding package 
  • Make sure to acquire all your wedding needs like the outfits, decors, and cake on time


How Do You Get Married On A Cruise Ship?

  • Find a wedding package offered by a cruise line that fits your budget and needs
  • Check if you’ll have an officiant for your ceremony and if you’ll have the wedding aboard but expect that the ship will be in port; some ships also have wedding chapels or lounges on board 
  • Alternatively, you can have the ceremony and reception before the ship leaves port; this is useful if you have guests who can’t sail 
  • Acquire a marriage license in advance of your cruise wedding
  • Check the marriage policies with the cruise’s wedding consultant 


Can You Do A Wedding On A Cruise?

You can get married on a cruise, and most mainstream cruise lines offer wedding services. The ceremony may be aboard or at the shoreside,  then you can spend the rest of the cruise duration like a vacation with your friends and family. 

And for guests who don’t know what to wear, please check the couple’s wedding invites or wedding website. You can also read what to wear to a wedding on a yacht as the dress codes might be similar. 



Was this guide helpful? You just learned how to plan a cruise wedding by starting with the destination length, wedding date, finding a cruise line, and getting the legal needs, invitations, websites, and wedding vendors. 

You can acquire a wedding package from the cruise line for your convenience. If you know a wedding planner specializing in this type of wedding, you can consider having one to save you the stress of comparing cruise lines.

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