Have you ever saved dreamy beach wedding pics in anticipation of your special day? Maybe you’ve thought about going barefoot underneath your gorgeous gown so you can feel the sand between your toes as you wed your beloved. Have you studied seasonal beachside temps or wondered how your bridal hairstyle will survive a stiff beach breeze?
If so, this article is for you, Destination Lowcountry wedding candidate!
Tip #1 Preliminaries
Before Beaufort County will let you skip down the aisle (legally, anyway) there are a few requirements. Both applicants must apply in person at the Office of the Judge of Probate at the Beaufort County Courthouse or Probate Court Satellite office on Hilton Head Island. Wedding ceremonies performed on the beach require a permit (24-hour waiting period after application) from the Town of Hilton Head Island. Valid identification is required, including Social Security number and another form of ID, such as driver’s license with picture or current passport. Note that a blood test is not required, and that SC does not have Justices of the Peace, but both notaries and ministers can perform the ceremony. A marriage license can be used statewide and cost ranges from $50-$95.
Tip #2 Venue
The Town of Hilton Head requires a permit in order to perform a ceremony on the beach. You must complete a “Wedding on the Beach Request Form” and submit it complete with date, time, location, duration, number of attendees and any other pertinent information. Hilton Head Island has an astonishing variety of venues, including country clubs, sailboats, a lighthouse, oceanfront ballrooms, and even yachts! But the overwhelming majority prefer our flat expanses of sand and breathtaking ocean vistas.
Tip #3 Wardrobe
It’s nearly impossible to find a designer wedding gown on the Island, so you may want to purchase yours before arrival and bring it with you or have it delivered. Make sure your groom does NOT wear a full tuxedo. Typically, it is hot and humid near the beach, and the last thing we want is for your groom to be uncomfortable.
Tip #4 Season
September and October tend to foment tropical storms, so be warned! Also, check local temps and rainy seasons before nailing down a date. Spring and Summer are busy times for venues, so reserve yours early.
Tip #5 Wedding Planner
Local wedding planners are knowledgeable about the area and, because they often have arrangements with certain local businesses for discounts, they can help you meet your budget. With a planner, you can breathe a sigh of relief that your wedding details are taken care of, and focus on the most important aspect—enjoying every moment!
Tip #6 Budget
On Hilton Head Island, your dream wedding can be as lavish or as intimate as you’d like. Minimum venue costs for 50 can range from $1,800 to $10,000, depending on location and available amenities. You will be surprised at the variety of venue choices on the Island, all with stunning ocean, golf course, marina or Lowcountry marshland views.