Eco-Friendly Weddings Abroad | Marry Abroad

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heart made of flowers


Eco-Friendly Weddings Abroad

You may be thinking that getting married abroad means that you can’t have an eco-friendly wedding, but you’d be surprised at the amount of things you can do to minimise your affect on the environment, even if you do choose to marry abroad.

As well as reducing your carbon footprint, many of the suggestions below will reduce your costs as well, therefore benefiting both you and the planet - enjoy!



  • Buy an ethical (non conflict) diamond if you can
  • Buy a vintage ring or adapt or re-size a family heirloom if you have one
  • Buy recycled jewellery or take a look on ebay


  • Send e-invites – either design your own or use one from an e-invite website
  • Use recycled paper and make your own cards
  • Set up a wedding website which your guests can access to reply to your invitation, keep up to date with progress, register for your gift list, get directions to your wedding and much more

Wedding list

  • Give to charity instead of receiving gifts
  • Plant a tree/buy a goat – use an alternative gift list to fund projects in the developing world
  • Don’t register for gifts you don’t need
  • Offset your wedding’s carbon footprint through your wedding list (your guests can contribute to offsetting the wedding)


  • Buy your wedding dress from a charity (and then donate it back again when you’re married). There are plenty of charities which offer a wide choice of wedding dress these days (Oxfam even have wedding dress shops)
  • Make your dress yourself, or have it made by a design student/your mum/someone you know
  • Adapt/wear a dress you already own
  • Buy a non wedding dress from the high street (some bridesmaids dresses are nicer than wedding dresses these days)
  • Borrow a dress (something borrowed, something blue etc.)
  • Copy the groom and hire a dress for the day

The Venue

  • Exchange your vows in the same place you hold your reception (if you are having your reception abroad)


  • Travel by train – make a holiday out of getting to the destination as well as afterwards
  • Suggest to your guests that they all hire a minibus and share the costs of getting to your wedding. Turn it into a road trip!
  • Offset your carbon footprint regardless of the way you travel to your wedding destination


  • Stay in local hotels not chain ones so you contribute to the local economy
  • If you feel sociable, hire a villa and share it with your guests (you could have a house party reception?)


  • Source local food for your reception whether you have it abroad or wait until you get home (or both)
  • Buy local drink, you'll get a better feel for a country if you drink their local brew
  • Have a fair trade wedding cake or ask a friend to make the cake
  • If you have your reception at home then ask friends to bring the food instead of presents, you'll get a much more personal array of food and it won't cost you a thing


  • For your ceremony abroad take silk or dried flowers and then reuse them if you celebrate at home too
  • Use a local florist who uses local flowers
  • Pick some flowers from the side of the road
  • Ask your friends and family to do the flower arrangements


  • Only print out the photos you actually need
  • Create your own wedding album by using an online photo printing company (it's more fun as you get to decide which photos you like the best)


  • Volunteer on a project
  • Fundraise for a charity by joining a trek/cycle programme
  • Relax in an eco resort/lodge