How to Plan a Hawaii Wedding

Aloha lovebirds! Ready to turn your wedding into a Hawaiian adventure? With tropical beaches, welcoming locals, ideal weather, and tasty local food, it's no mystery why this island appeals as a place to make a part of your love story. However, planning your big day comes with decision fatigue and overwhelming opinions. Our number one tip: Make quick decisions on the big stuff and enjoy the details! This day should reflect your and your partner's personalities - so plan a day for fun, romance, and a lot of dancing!

Buckle up for a breezy guide to saying "I do" in paradise – where love is the language, and aloha is the vibe.


Budget Talk - Get it Out of the Way! (And Then Stick to It!)

Having a rough idea of what you can spend before shopping around for venues and service providers is wise. This will help you to gather information and quickly eliminate options before you become too invested in them. Consider the following:

  • Factor in travel costs, accommodation, meals, transport, etc.
  • How extensive is your guest list? 
  • How much planning can you do yourself or can you afford a wedding planner?
  • What are must-have items, and what can be left off the budget or done yourself?

The cost of your wedding will depend mostly on your guest count, the venue, and the island you choose. According to Aloha Bridal Connections, the average wedding cost for about 75 guests on Oahu is between $30,000 and $50,000, excluding airfare, experiences, accommodation, and your dashing wedding outfit. Expect to find a range of wedding costs; there is something for every budget.


Pick Your Dream Backdrop

Hawaii is a popular destination for tying the knot, so many options exist. Do you want a luxurious Hawaiian hotel? Or maybe a tropical resort with a laid-back vacation atmosphere? And let's not forget the beaches, where you can say your vows with your toes in the sand and love in the air. Choosing a wedding venue is fun. Research and pick something that caters to your dream day with one of their wedding packages. 

Hire a Wedding Coordinator

Wedding planners ensure everything goes according to plan so you can relax and indulge in the beauty and love of the day. If the budget allows, a wedding coordinator can take a lot of weight off your shoulders. Plus, they have local knowledge!


Selecting the Perfect Grinds (That's Hawaiian for Food!)

You want your guests to have an ono (delicious) meal! Hawaii has unique meal options that celebrate tropical flavors and local produce. Ensure that the chosen venue honors the island ingredients for a sustainable menu incorporating native Hawaiian culture. 

Many local food vendors offer the aloha spirit and casual island charm. Banan is a beautiful business that supports local banana farms. Its event cart serves dairy-free frozen treats - yum! 


Navigating the Marriage License Maze

Couples can easily apply for a marriage license online, pay the necessary fees, and find a performer to officiate their ceremony.

  • Performers looking to become licensed can conveniently register online with the state.
  • A marriage license in Hawaii costs $65, and you can apply online.
  • After completing the online application, both individuals intending to marry must appear together before a license agent to acquire the necessary license. 


Additional Tips for Your Hawaiian Wedding

  • Offer guests some suggestions and tips on accommodation. At Waikiki Resort Hotel, we've got deals that run year-round.
  • Dive into Hawaiian traditions, but familiarize yourself and your guest with how to navigate Hawaiian culture with sensitivity
  • Capture the moments and hire a photographer and videographer for your special day.
  • Avoid heavy tourist season, as traffic and prices can damage your day. Weather is excellent year-round, so plan for May to June or September to November, as these times have fewer crowds and lower costs.
  • Beach weddings not occupied by a state or federal park must have a state permit. 
  • Send out invitations early to give your guest ample time to save up and plan for their trip to paradise. Include fun tips to get them excited about exploring the island. 
  • Support local businesses in Hawaii - from florists to photographers and more. 

Planning your wedding in Hawaii is about mixing love, laughter, and a bit of tropical magic. Mahalo for letting Hawaii be part of your love story!