Elopement has been on the rise for years now, and one of the biggest reasons is because millennials, by and large, have embraced it.
What was once seen as a rare or even somewhat taboo form of marriage has become more than mainstream, due to a variety of factors, including societal and economic.
Millennials, in general, are known to buck tradition in favor of practicality. Many industries once thought of as “rock solid” have taken a massive hit in the last ten years due in part because millennials simply have no use for them.
Old traditions aren’t as important to millennials because they are often burdened financially. It was relatively easy for a couple to drop $15K or more on a wedding a few generations ago, but right now in the current state of our economy, that’s practically a financial death sentence.
The truth is, not only are elopements more wallet-friendly, they are often far more exciting.
What could be better than combining your wedding with your honeymoon? The thought of “running away” and getting married in a foreign, romantic city or on a secluded beach, rather than your local church, is starting to garner mass appeal.
And no wonder. There’s more and more evidence that elopements just work. They are easy to budget, much less stressful, there aren’t as many obligations to family, and they are far more customizable to beliefs and taste.
Here are a few of the biggest reasons why millennials are choosing to elope!
Avoiding Your Extended Family
Let’s get real, not everyone wants to invite Weird Uncle Joe to the most important event of their life, but are typically forced to out of tradition.
Many of us don’t have fully cohesive families. Some different factions of a certain family may indeed hate each other, and always cause drama in their wake.
For some, they’re just not that connected to their extended family. Random third cousins who you haven’t seen in a decade get a guaranteed ride to your wedding?
Not according to millennials.
Bucking the trend of huge family gatherings, millennials tend to value substance when it comes to who they let into their personal space, and that includes gatherings and get-togethers.
On the other hand, some of us have wonderful families, but hold to the idea that “everything isn’t for everybody.” Just because someone is distantly related to you doesn’t mean they get an automatic pass into the most intimate, special moments in your life.
For many millennials, just being able to have a simple, hassle-free minimalist wedding ceremony without a hundred people you barely know mulling about is reason enough to get eloped.
The Intimacy is a Big Draw
The simplicity and small nature of elopements is actually a draw in and of itself.
Years ago, it was popular to make weddings as big as humanly possible. The more people, the more food, the more flowers, the better. Big expensive dress, tons of decorations, no cut corners.
This kind of event rarely appeals to millennials, who look at such things as not only stuffy but as a massive waste of money.
Millennials are a generation that as grown up alongside the economic instability of the 2000s, and have seen firsthand what happens if you fritter money away. If our relatives didn’t get hit in the dot com bust, they got hit in the 2008 housing crash and recession, or experienced these hardships for themselves.
For the average millennial, every dollar saved is a dollar that can go to a more enriching experience.
This is one of the biggest reasons that small, intimate elopements are so appealing to millennials. You save a ton of money getting eloped, and typically the size of the event is a fraction of what it would be as a wedding. There’s just a lot less to spend money on, and a lot less “pieces” to get in order.
What’s more, millennials like the idea that elopements are more about the couple. It focuses on the romance and personal intimacy rather than the pageantry of traditional weddings.
Less Nerves and Stress
With fewer family members around, less money being spent, and more down-to-earth comfort and intimacy, elopements tend to be much less stressful than weddings, especially if you opt for an elopement planner that takes care of most of your needs.
Stress is one of the biggest issues these days, especially for millennials, who try and mitigate it at all costs. Stress, being the silent killer that it is, can pose a huge management problem for some people.
Weddings are traditionally very stressful. Nervous breakdowns before, and even during weddings, are not unheard of.
This kind of dramatic stress reaction is practically unheard of during elopements, because they have a much more comforting, casual feel. You can decide how much goes into an elopement in terms of events, obligations, and so forth, meaning that there aren’t really any stressors present.
It helps that the event doesn’t have a massive price tag, either.
Less stress means more fun, and that’s music to a millennial’s ears.
Not Tied Down by Tradition
Weddings by definition are a relic of tradition. They ooze with it.
Everything from what church to get married in, to gifts that are given, to throwing the bouquet, and everything in between.
Some of the traditions are loved, but others can be trite and tiresome, especially for couples who don’t necessarily want to carry on the traditions of their parents.
What’s more, tradition can often get in the way of a couple’s happiness. If the couple practices two different religions, or even two different denominations of the same religion, the question then becomes, which church are we getting married in, what style of wedding are we having, who is “marrying into” whose tradition, and so forth.
Eloping gives couples the freedom to do what they want, without fear of being trapped or hamstrung by tradition. In some cases, it’s not uncommon for modern elopements to even “combine” traditions, to form hybrid ceremonies that take bits from each religion or tradition.
There’s nothing outside of the rules in an elopement when it comes to how the actual ceremony is performed, and this is one of its great appeals.
Overall this makes for a much more personal, customized experience. No one has to necessarily give up something special to them just to get married, such as beloved customs or garb. Sure, you can often pull such feats off at a wedding, too, but you’ll encounter much more resistance and red tape. And depending on the families involved, they might not give the OK at all.
Marriage should be about the couple, full stop. This is what millennials believe, and it’s why they love elopements. Money, family, and tradition shouldn’t get in the way of a happy union!
Click HERE to learn the 5 secrets to a successful (and stress-free) elopement and BONUS checklist!