Frequently Asked Questions
With so many elopement services to chose from, why Elope to San Diego? Elope to San Diego™ holds an A+ rating with the San Diego Better Business Bureau and has won WeddingWire’s “Couple’s Choice Award” in 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011 & 2010.
Update: Elope to San Diego™ (aka: Vows From The Heart Ministries) won the prestigious 2014 “Torch Award for Marketplace Ethics” by the San Diego Better Business Bureau!
Beware of wedding or elopement services making unsubstantiated claims. ANYONE can say they’ve been performing weddings in San Diego for generations, or create their own emblem proclaiming they are the BEST, the BIGGEST, the OLDEST or MOST TRUSTED. Those claims don’t mean a thing without an objective, 3rd party accreditation or governance to back them up! Do your homework; check reviews on Wedding Wire, Yelp and others before you decide who to trust with your most important day! Check our ratings with WeddingWire and Yelp and then, compare our ratings and reviews with the other services.
Can you give any advice that will help? Our best piece of advice is this; This is an elopement! Throw away any of the formalities of a wedding. There is nothing to plan other than transportation, lodging (if needed) and obtaining your license. Really, it’s that easy. Remember, an elopement is running away with your beloved to make it easy and you can make it and it should be, stress-free.
Can we have chairs and an altar? No, that would not be an elopement, this would then simply become a small wedding and everything changes in style, presentation, etc.. We still offer this wedding service however, not through Elope to San Diego and none of the vendors offer specials. Full service Weddings, large and small, can be booked through this website at www.vowsfromtheheart.com
Can we play music from a smartphone, bluetooth speaker or the like? No, as this is an elopement and there is no processional or recessional to walk in or out from and more importantly, it’s very difficult as it is to to talk with wind, waves and people; adding music would only make this worse.
Do I have to get my license in California? Yes! Do not bring a marriage license from another State, it would not valid. If you reside in the State of California, you may obtain your license from your County Clerk’s office and bring it with you as it’s valid anywhere in the State of California.
Do you obtain permits required? No and there is no need for a permit for our elopement ceremony at the two primary locations we serve; Oceanside and Coronado.
YOU MUST however obtain a permit, in advance from the San Diego Parks Department to be married in La Jolla, Sunset Cliffs, Mission Bay or any San Diego Shoreline Park.
May I have my family and friends at the elopement? Yes of course, we limit the size to 20 guests (although strongly suggest you limit your gusts to 10 people) at the Coronado Dunes or Oceanside Cassidy Street locations and 2 guests at the Coronado Bay View Park location. All permitted events are limited to the amount stated on the issued permit.
One of the other elopement services charges more for more than 4 guests, do you? No and we have the same question you do regarding this practice by the others, why?
One of the other elopement services makes you upgrade to a $1000 package if there are more than 4 guests, do you? No and just like the question above, we have the same question you do regarding this practice by the others, why?
Do I get to choose the location? Elope to San Diego services are offered at 2 primary locations; Oceanside and Coronado. However, with permit obtained by you by the City of San Diego Parks Dept. we are available to help in La Jolla, Sunset Cliffs and Mission Bay.
Are there areas of San Diego you do not perform elopements? Yes and simply because an elopement is suppose to be easy. Traffic and parking is a major issue in parts of San Diego. We have the most popular sites listed on the site but if you have another preference, please check with us FIRST before booking. In most cases, something can be arranged.
Areas Not Served are: WindnSea Beach or the Surfer Hut, La Jolla Cove, La Jolla Shores, The Silver Strand of Coronado, Cabrillo National Monument, Torrey Pines State Park and/or Preserve, Any Dog Beach in San Diego, The Embarcadero or Seaport Village. There are also additional areas, please check first before booking or changing locations after booking.
Do we meet prior? This is an elopement, there are no meetings, interviews, ceremony reviews, etc. We’re the simplicity of a courthouse ceremony but with a much prettier view!
Are you available for a rehearsal? This is an elopement and there is no rehearsal as there is nothing to rehearse.
Can we review or write our own ceremony? No, and this would not be an elopement. Remember, the concept of Elope to San Diego is to make your elopement special at a beautiful location rather than the courthouse. Although we do offer our couples the opportunity to write and speak their own vows during the ceremony if desired, and also include one of the two acts of celebration listed and offered, there is no written ceremony to review or edit.
Do you work with coordinators? As this is an elopement there would be no need to hire or work with a coordinator. If so, you would just be having a small wedding. If you have one already, that’s okay however, he or she would not be needed at the ceremony site for any reason and would be better served for your plans before or after. We do not work with coordinators nor do we book third party for elopements simply because there is nothing to coordinate with the ceremony! We work with couples directly and do not allow services to have an additional fee added to it and do not participate in any “package” deals or offers with coordinators or will ever leave the impression that we are part of a group. Remember, we are here to serve and save you money! Just the two of us!
Do I have to use your vendors for photography, etc? Not at all however, we do highly recommend you at least look at the services the Elope to San Diego photographers offer if you are in need. They have all agreed to offer their services at a major discount to Elope to San Diego couples. Also, If you are using a photographer NOT associated with Elope to San Diego, there are many restrictions and they should know these before you hire them.
What if I have to cancel the date and time? The retainer is non-refundable and non-transferable to another date, time or location. You will have to agree to this numerous times during the booking process so there is never a misunderstanding of the terms; non-refundable and non-transferable.
What if it rains? The ceremony must go on! We provide a large three person umbrella in case of showers or rain. Remember, it’s good luck if it rains on your special day! If you secure another location in the same area, simply let us know and we will try and do our best to accommodate your new request of arrangements.
Can we include our children? Yes, of course and it brings such a wonderful element to your ceremony. Reading and acts of celebration can be added, at NO additional charge to help them share in the magic of your day!