Why have a wedding in France? If somebody were asked about France, they’d almost always refer to it as a ‘romantic’ country, whether they’ve visited or not. And well, they wouldn’t be wrong – France is truly the embodiment of all things romance. There’s a reason why newlyweds always consider going to France for their honeymoon. In fact, its reputation has also made it a popular destination to tie the knot.
Like their love for wine, the French go big on wedding celebrations! From extravagant proposals to dreamy ceremonies, a wedding in France is nothing short of a fairytale. Therefore, whether you’re a local or a tourist looking to have a destination wedding ceremony in France, planning the perfect French wedding is surely daunting.
Lucky for you, we’ve compiled a complete handbook for everything you need to know about weddings in France. You can also check our guide for destination weddings in France. From legal requirements and venues, to accommodation and logistics, this guide contains everything you possibly need to know to marry the French way.
The only wedding ceremony that is considered legally-binding in France is a civil ceremony, which is held at the city hall. The process for that isn’t the easiest.
For instance, you and/or partner must reside in France for at least 40 days. Plus, have a complete set of required documentation to be allowed to marry in France. We mention this in detail in our guide on Parisian weddings. Then there are religious ceremonies, for the couples who believe practicing faith is a major aspect in their lives. However, since they aren’t legally binding, you must have a civil wedding ceremony in France beforehand.
We’re often asked if foreigners get married in France. Of course! They can either go through the process of having a civil ceremony. Otherwise, to avoid complications, they can choose to get married in their home country, and have a symbolic ceremony in France.
Symbolic ceremonies have gained quite the popularity in France, mainly because of the convenience they offer. Performed by a celebrant or officiant, symbolic ceremonies allow the couple to focus on their special day without worrying about legalities.
Pro tip: Try to book your officiant in advance to have a better idea of the requirements. In fact, to avoid any last minute bridezilla moments, try planning and booking everything in advance. If you do wish to go for a civil ceremony, check out our guides on Paris elopements and on Parisian weddings to know about the documentation and any other requirements you will need to fulfill.
Before we jump into how much it costs to plan a wedding in France, please allow us to introduce ourselves.
We are The Paris Photographer, a team of friendly and fun professional wedding photographers, based in Paris and available to photograph all over France (also in Europe). The team has been created by Fran Boloni, award winning photographer. Our aim is to provide high-quality wedding photography with a variety in photographic style. We know that photography is subjective, that’s why our artists have different artistic vision and we are sure that you can find the best fit for the wedding of your dreams.
Explore our team and book a photographer or videographer now, for your wedding in France.
If you are looking for a wedding videographer, please follow this link to discover our portfolio of wedding videography.
You will be pleasantly surprised that a wedding in France is not exuberantly expensive. However, the total cost depends on how grand or intimate your wedding event is. A wedding with a guest list of 50 will surely have a different budget than a wedding that hosts, let’s say, 300 guests.
So, let’s talk numbers for a wedding France that has about 100 guests. On average, a classic wedding would start around €20,000-€30,000. A luxury wedding in France would go up to about €70,000 – €150,000. And for our fancy queens who wish to go all out on their special days, an ultimately grand wedding can range from anything over €150,000 and go up to €400,000.
The cost of your wedding in France will also depend on how far in advance you plan the event and on the number and quality of wedding vendors that you plan on hiring. Indeed, many vendors have a more interesting rate if you book 1 or 2 years in advance. As to the quality of a vendor, the prices vary depending on the number of years of experience and the quality of the service that is being provided.
It’s very important that the first step to planning a wedding involves clearly setting out a budget. Not only will it keep your expenses in check, but it’ll give you a way to track your spending as well as keep you relaxed.
Pro tip: The only currency accepted in France is the Euro, but major credit cards are readily accepted in nearly all areas, excluding the ones that are exceptionally isolated.
It’s not a surprise to know that France is adorned with breathtaking venues to have a wedding in. From the luxurious salons of The Ritz in Paris, and the luscious gardens of Chateau la Chevre d’Or, Eze in southern France. To the breathtaking view Yachts de Paris offers of the Seine River, France will have you spoilt for choice when it comes to wedding venues.
We can’t possibly cover all the beauty that France has to offer here in one post – so head over to our comprehensive guide on the most romantic venues scattered around France. From charming chateaux to grand hotel ballrooms to romantic beaches, we believe that each location has its own unique vibe, and you’re guaranteed to have a memorable wedding.
Yes, of course! There are two conditions though: a) One of the either parties (bride or the groom) must be catholic. b) They must either be a student, an Alumni of Notre Dame or a parish member of Sacred Heart. Oh, and the cost is a $750 church fee. And no flowers allowed (sad but true).
Like most countries, Spring (late March to early June) and Autumn (late September to early December) are considered the best times for a wedding – the weather is pleasant and the ambiance is delightful.
Summers are usually hot in France, but if you’re in the mood for a beach wedding, you can definitely consider planning during summertime. While the north is quite chilly during the winters, southern France often offers cold breezes and sunny days. Perfect for an outdoor wedding. Check out our quick guide on beach weddings in France to plan the perfect summer wedding!
Pro tip: Look for venues that can cater to last minute changes if the weather suddenly decides to be moody. Have a plan B ready in case you need to move the ceremony indoors.
There’s a lot that goes into planning a wedding ceremony in France, and vendors play a pivotal role in determining how your special day is going to turn out (no pressure, dear vendors). Here’s a list of the vendors that will add value to your big day:
The wedding vendor that along with the wedding planner, spends the entire wedding day with you. The wedding photographer and videographer makes sure to capture the most meaningful moments of your wedding day and strives to show the story the way it looked and felt to you, the bride and the groom.
Explore our talented wedding videographers in France.
To be honest, a wedding planner makes your life easy. Instead of going through the stressful journey of planning your entire wedding day on your own, it’s much simpler to graciously accept the shoulder wedding planners lend you.
More importantly, wedding planners know everything there is to know about weddings, so we recommend it if you’re going for a destination wedding France. There’s a reason why it’s so easy to rip off tourists – they don’t know much about the place. Not only will a planner assist you in every way possible, but they’ll get you the perfect wedding for your personalized budget!
If you’re looking for a wedding planner for your destination wedding in France, we’ve compiled a list of the top 10 wedding planners in Paris, along with how to pick the right one. The list is in the works.
Pro tip: Have a detailed meeting before finalizing the wedding planner, so they understand your vision. You also need to be comfortable with them to speak your heart and know that they won’t judge you when you ask to have at least 10 champagne towers. Now that’s a wedding we would LOVE to attend.
A French wedding can come in many different colors, sizes and forms, but the trademark of it is the beautiful harmony of delicacy and charm that is depicted all over, from the venue to the décor to the cutlery.
If we were to think of a French wedding, it would be something like this: Luscious flower arrangements floating everywhere, dainty flatware and tableware. These elements coordinated to complement each other. Plus, the venue dripping with hues of gold and pastel-toned colors, such as blush pink or white. Oh, what a sight for sore eyes!
Since our love for weddings in France is endless, we’ve made a complete guide to have the perfect Parisian-themed weddings. In this guide, we discuss everything you need to know, from décor to even the makeup a French bride goes for!
You know that they made the effort to be there for you on your big day. So we sincerely believe guests should be taken care of generously, especially if it’s a destination wedding ceremony in France – I mean, they’ve traveled across the world for you!
It’s always a good idea to plan activities that your guests can indulge in when they’re not busy with the wedding festivities. It will take time, but it will warm your guests’ heart to see the effort you’ve put in to make sure they enjoy their stay. Here is a list of some thrilling activities you can arrange to keep them hooked!
Other than that, it’s crucial to organize accommodation and logistics for your guests beforehand, to avoid any stress on the wedding day.
Pro-tip: There are several venues that offer gorgeous areas for a wedding reception, as well as accommodation for your guests. This will help you save some major bucks as you won’t have to worry about driving them back and from the venue.
Just talking about French weddings has left us feeling fuzzy – imagine how we feel when we’re actually at one. Starry skies, exquisite wine, delectable food and love in the air – France is truly a memorable experience. Tying the knot in the most romantic world in the world is a dream for many couples. We really hope we’ve helped you come one step closer to making this dream a reality!
Let’s create magical photos of your dream wedding in France!