Getting married on board

Share your experiences of getting married onboard a ship, or ask any questions you have about getting married onboard - even renewing vows.
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melsea
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Getting married on board

Post by melsea »

I wanted to write on the original one asking this but there isn't a button to post on it so I have done it this way.

My husband & I got engaged while on the Aurora's Grand Voyage 2010, it was when we were at the port of Dubai that we got engaged. A bit bizarre as we could not actually act as though we were engaged due to the very strict laws of showing affection in public. Back on board, it wasn't until the next night that we could tell our table companions we got engage because not all our table guest were there that night, also one of them was very excited that they bought a ring at the gold souk and we didn't want to take their thunder. So while at our meal the following night we told our table companions and well we celebrated with drinks all round and it was just fabulous.
It didn't take long to figure out that getting married on board was what we wanted to do and we had already had booked next years world cruise on Aurora so we set in motion of booking our wedding there and then. The food & beverage manager Daniel was brilliant and he arranged for the dates at sea for that cruise. I looked at our itinerary and worked out when would be a fabulous place at sea to get married. February 15th 2011 in the South Pacific two sea days before Tahiti, perfect.
P&O were just brilliant in our planning then and when we got home, it was still many months before we could actually put things in together and officially fill out the necessary legal forms.

Highlights for us apart from the actual ceremony which was performed by Captain David Pembridge were,
1. Coming down the steps of the main dining room where we were greeted by a rapturous applause by the restaurant diners having been announced by the restaurant manager Frankie De Souza
2. Having our wedding breakfast with our 10 guest who did not know they would be guest at our wedding, outside in the Pennant Grill having had a wonderful day in Bora Bora, dress theme was Tropical, just magical.

I would definitely rate and recommend having a wedding on board a cruise ship. We were given what we paid for, what we expected and so much more. Our wedding coordinators, we had two, Ben Piper and Hannah were excellent and made our wedding day special in all aspects.

Well done P&O you us proud.

Mel & Bill


Joesmum
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Re: Getting married on board

Post by Joesmum »

Sounds wonderful Melsea.

For those considering a wedding at sea this is my experience so far:

I'm getting married on 25th Feb on Ventura. We cruised with RCI 2 years ago for the first time and like many others were bitten by the cruise bug. We wanted a low-key, stress free day as we had 'the works' first time around and all the associated pressure and after considering eloping to Gretna and a local register office my partner had the best idea he's ever had - 'let's get married on a cruise and combine the wedding and honeymoon'.

We chose P & O because the wedding department was in the UK and I thought it would be easier to sort out any problems. So far it's been relatively simple. Choosing the cruise, date and time of ceremony and completing a few simple forms. (The ceremony, for people who don't know, has to be on a sea day if you're getting married on board). We chose the first available sea day which was originally the 26th but a change of itinerary meant it was moved to 25th. This made no difference to us as it's just the 2 of us and no invitations, etc had been sent. Could have been a problem I suppose if invites/favours with date of wedding had been printed! Think you are warned about itinerary changes in the small print when you book the wedding.
Flowers, cakes, etc are ordered from a brochure if you choose to have them and I'm booked in for hair and makeup in the Spa. I believe I have a 'trial run' for both on embarkation day.
From reading thread on P & O forum I think I'll be met by the wedding co-ordinator when on board to go through the details. The only thing that's concerned me is that there is no contact from wedding dept apart from issuing the forms for the marriage licence and invoice for payment. Could be because there's nothing further they can do and it's all taken care of on board. Have no idea who the wedding coordinator is ( have a vision in mind of Frank from 'Father of the Bride' which would be hysterical) or the name of the Captain who will marry us. You can choose the vows, any poetry and music you may want as you walk into the wedding from a book P & O provide or take your own cd.
My dress has to be packed in my case (we're on a chartered Thompson flight) but we do get an extra 5kg luggage allowance each. This is something to think about if you have a 'big' gown! I've read that you get your wedding dress/suit pressed on board and someone will help you to dress, if needed. We are going it alone so witnesses will be provided from crew.
There are probably lots of other questions I had answered on the other forum that I can't think of right now and I'll be able to answer more myself after the event. Watch this space....... :wave:

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melsea
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Re: Getting married on board

Post by melsea »

Joesmum

Congratulations.

From what you say there isn't much of a gap between when you board and you getting married. If you have any concerns do take them up with the coordinator as that is what they are there for and they should be able help you with absolutely anything and they also liaison with all the other departments that are involved in your special day. Do not be scared to ask for anything, they will gladly do it.

We had our outfits pressed free of charged. As to witnesses you might want to invite your table companions if you are club dining but it sounds as though you want it to just be you two and the crew.
Whatever you have just relax and let everyone be in charge.

Good luck. Will be thinking of you...

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arrbee
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Re: Getting married on board

Post by arrbee »

Just wanted to wish you and your partner all the best.

We saw a couple who had got married on our cruise last month and they looked like they were enjoying their day and they both looked terrific. They were on their own too, apart form their little girl.

Mind you, I did think it ws funny that they were sitting in the Sports bar, still in their finery, surrounded by footie fans watching a live match :lol:


Joesmum
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Re: Getting married on board

Post by Joesmum »

Thank you both for your good wishes.

Now in Birmingham hotel for the night before flight tomorrow. Hubby-to-be loves his rugby so luckily the Wales/Italy game is on Sat not Monday or I may well have been in the same position. :D

My vows don't include the word 'obey' so suppose I could have declined anyway. :lol:

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JenniC
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Re: Getting married on board

Post by JenniC »

Have a wonderful day :P
Jenni

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melsea
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Re: Getting married on board

Post by melsea »

Have a fabulous time, do let us know how it all goes..

On the evening of our wedding day the dress code was smart casual and we were the only ones dressed up which for us made us feel even more special as we kind of stood out.

You will love it...

Mel

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Boxermum
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Re: Getting married on board

Post by Boxermum »

We got married on Christmas eve 2011 on board Arcadia. We arranged and paid for hair, makeup, flowers and cake with the wedding department in Southampton. When we boarded I wanted to book some spa treatments so went straight to the spa and the girls noticed I was to have bridal hair and make up done so I arranged with them myself time for trial (did it at 5.30 that day, not advisable if you don't want to miss sailway) and the time on wedding day for hair and makeup. The wedding co-ordinator I believe can do this for you but we didn't get the invitation to meet with our co-ordinator until the next day. When we did meet up with Craig he bought us a coffee and went over how the whole wedding would be. We gave him our CD with our music (make a back up copy and try them before you sail) and he took us to the wedding venue to see it. He was very good and every time we had any questions he got back to us quickly. We met with the photographers too before hand and arranged with them any special photos we wanted. I had my wedding dress pressed and it came back perfect. We invited our table companions to the ceremony and our friends who were with us arranged with Jane McDonald to come along too since I'm a huge fan of hers. The day itself was amazing. Can honestly say I didn't feel stressed. I spent the morning at the spa being pampered, had room service sandwiches then my other half got ready and disappeared to the Crows nest to meet the other guests whilst I got ready with the help of my friend and the photographer. The ceremony itself is now just a blur but was just what we wanted -intimate and special to us. We had champagne, posed for some pictures with our guests then got paraded around the ship to have more pictures taken. We had a brief 5 minutes in the cabin to freshen up before making our way to the dining room where the head waiter was waiting for us, he introduced us and escorted us to our table whilst encouraging the whole restaurant to clap. Our cake was brought to the table after dinner so we could cut it and the waiters serenaded us with "Congratulations". We had a few more drinks with our table companions and returned to our cabin to find our towels made into swans with noses touching to form a heart. Great day and wonderful memories. Would recommend this type of wedding to anyone.
Yvonne


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Re: Getting married on board

Post by Boris+ »

We had our renewal of vows - and everything went so beautifully.

I have had friends who have had their ceremonies on dry land, but I wouldn't have missed ours at sea not for all the tea in China. Our guests had a great time too - and the photos were well worth while getting done. We left the ship with a wonderful photo album, fabulous memories and the mandatory gift of a silver photo frame and crystal glasses from the Captain.

Our ceremony day was a formal evening, so we all got dressed around about tea time, and whilst the chaps wore suits the ladies wore evening dresses, and then afterwards whilst the ladies relaxed with champagne the chaps quickly went and changed into their evening suits. We all kept our ceremony buttonholes/corsages on for the evening, and there was a lovely special flower arrangement on our table for dinner - which remained for the rest of the cruise.

If you 'think' you would like to do your renewal of vows onboard - GO FOR IT, and have a wonderful special time.

Em :)


simeon
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Re: Getting married on board

Post by simeon »

Congratulations on what I hope is just the beginning of many wonderful years of joy and happiness. We didn't get married on a cruise, but we have heard countless stories of how amazing the experience has been for people. We have a few friends who have been married during a cruise in one manner or another. Some did it on the ship while others did it on shore at one of the exotic ports where the ship docked for a day or so. We are coming up on our 10 year anniversary in the very near future and we have been discussing the idea of renewing our vows on a cruise. Your story only helps sell me on the idea. Thanks for taking the time to share!

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