Weddings & Vow
On A Budget
You Have Q’s, We Have A’s
Is A Cocoa Beach Wedding A Good Fit For You?
Cocoa Beach weddings are awesome and for most, are a perfect fit. You’ll need to understand there are unknowns such as weather, beachgoers, seaweed on the shoreline, sun in your eyes, etc. In other words, if everything is not Pinterest perfect are you going to be disappointed or will it ruin your day? Our Cocoa Beach Florida Weddings are beautiful and at the end of the day, you are married! You may have stressed a little, but no matter the outcome, it will be a memorable day!
What happens if it rains?
First and foremost, if an indoor alternate site is desired, it will be your responsibility. However, this usually will not be a problem if you follow our advice.
Morning weddings are best to avoid rain, plus you have wait out time. When planning an evening wedding, allow at least 90 minutes before the sunset. We will need some wait out time. You have to be flexible! If moving the time up or back to avoid being in the rain, you and your guests need to be prepared. We do not change days for rain.
What about hurricanes and tropical storms?
In the event of a likely storm, your deposit and balance can be used towards another date within the year. We can also be proactive and flexible if moving the date a day earlier or a few days later will help. This is the only time a date can be moved. Remember, we are a barrier Island, meaning that we evacuate during hurricanes which include hotels on the beaches. We all pretty much live on the beach or one of the other islands. Hurricanes are not an every year thing.
Are the beaches crowded? I want a private area.
Yes, the beaches can be crowded. We have no private beaches. Morning weddings have the best potential of fewer crowds. 90 minutes before sunset can be less crowded but then you have the risk of potential rain. Holidays, weekends, spring break, and summer will be more crowded. Nov-Jan is typically the best time unless we are having summer-like temps. You will most likely have people in the background, umbrellas etc. As stated earlier, we do light photoshopping, this will not include taking everything out.
Do you do sunset weddings?
Because the sun sets in the west, the answer is no if you are expecting a ball of sun dropping down behind you over the ocean. If you are asking about the time of day, then yes, but no closer than 90 minutes before sunset for a start time. Most people think you are going to automatically get beautiful colors etc. This doesn’t really happen on a daily basis, but when it does- it is pretty. It is a nice time of day though!
Do you do sunrise weddings?
We do but there is a fee. $75 per vendor. For example, a wedding with an officiant, photographer, and decorations would be $225. Decorations are limited, but we are happy to discuss what we can do. Sunrise weddings are not for everyone. Think about how early you will need to start out. Think about your guests, kids, etc. If you are not a morning person, you will not become one all of a sudden. Sunrises range from beautiful balls of light to just pretty colors, to not much if it is really cloudy or foggy.
Where do you do weddings?
Please go to the toolbar and read “ceremony sites“. We have put together a few sites with photos with pros and cons. Of course, if you have a site in mind, we will certainly consider it. Hotels and beaches are not always an option. You need permission. They do not own the beach, but they do own the access. If you are renting a beachfront condo you might need permission as well. You may be unfamiliar with certain areas and will give you the best advice. You can choose to take it or leave it.
I want to book, what do I do?
Go to the toolbar and choose “Book My Wedding“. Once we get this info, a contract will be emailed. Return the contract and payment within the 7-day hold date. A check is preferred, but a CC invoice can be sent. Once everything is returned, we will email everything you will need for your wedding or renewal, including ceremonies to choose from, and a form called wedding details.
Have people lost dates by ignoring the hold date?
Yes, unfortunately, some dates are more popular than others. If we have an inquiry for a date while the contract is out and the hold date is still valid, I make a waitlist. Once the hold is up, the next couple is called; however, if you need a reasonable extension, I am happy to help you as long as a waitlist has not been started.
I am late for everything. Can we start late?
No. A wedding that starts a few minutes late is normal, anything later is considered poor planning. With the exception of waiting out rain, no wedding should start late. A late fee after the first 15 minutes is due in cash before the wedding starts. $50 per vendor every 15 minutes. We really don’t want your money, but we do want to start on time. For this reason, it is enforced. Orlando is at least an hour away, add more time for beach traffic, etc. Starting late in the evening can be catastrophic since we could be in the dark.
I have changed my mind, is my deposit refundable?
No, deposits are not refundable, no exceptions. Please do not put us in the awkward position by asking. Deposits are given to vendors to hold the date for you. Balances are nonrefundable if weddings are canceled within 30 days of the contracted date. Balances are due one month before the date.
I do not want to cancel just postpone, is this OK?
You can put your deposit toward another date as long as the new date is within a year of the original wedding date. This needs to be decided within a month of contacting us with the postponement.
Can I remove or add things on my contract?
Only small things such as the number of chairs can be removed. You can add things as long as they are available. We do multiple weddings at different sites and are sometimes limited as to what is available. It is best to contract everything you want sooner than later so we can ensure it is available, but at the same time, don’t decide too quickly that you go over your budget and then can’t take it off.
Will there be seaweed on the beach?
Sometimes there is quite a bit; other times, nothing. We are not allowed to rake. Between turtle season restrictions and erosion control, seaweed removal is a no-no! It is usually not in our immediate area. Some of the beaches farther south are thinner beaches and can tend to have more seaweed that will be visible from the ceremony site.
Do you perform same sex marriages or vow renewals?
Absolutely! We are proud to support the LGBTQ community!
We do not want to see each other. Is this do-able?
Yes. The groom will need to arrive first and be on the beach 30 minutes before the wedding starts. The bride will arrive 15 minutes before. We will keep you away from each other- no worries. If you are OK with seeing each other you can arrive together.
How many all together can I have attend?
Our weddings are usually pretty small. Preferably 35 or under, including everyone. However, different situations may accommodate larger groups. Time of day, the site you choose, etc will factor into it. However, our weddings are never over 50 unless you are at a beachfront hotel and they are hosting your reception with an inside area if needed or if you have secured an inside area elsewhere.
For a wedding 35-50 please speak to us and we will explain the different options.
What months will it be hot?
Just figure it will be hot no matter what month you choose. April-Oct can be ridiculously hot! Nov-March will probably be hot as well, but if you are going to have cooler days, it is more likely to be during these months. We have had 90’s in Nov, Jan, and Feb. Not really normal. I always tell this story… “One year in January, we had 8 days in a row below freezing. Not normal. The next year the same 8 days were all in the 80’s which isn’t necessarily normal either. So in winter, your guess is as good as mine.
Should I bring water for my guests?
Yes, we encourage it! If the forecast is calling for 80’s and 90’s, water will be needed. Your guests will thank you! Please think of your elderly guests, babies, and other small children when planning a beach wedding. Only you can determine if your guests will be able to handle the weather. The safety of your guests is the responsibility of the couple when it comes to heat. PLEASE bring water when there is extreme heat; you’ll be happy you did. Florida heat is a different heat!
Will the sun be in my eyes? Will I be squinting?
If there is no cloud cover, then you can assume that the sun is out no matter where it is in the sky and the sun could be in your eyes. It can even reflect off the sand and water. If you are highly sensitive, you could be squinting even with total cloud cover. Children seem to have a hard time. We always tell people not to wear sunglasses for photos; however, if they are needed, by all means, wear them! We want you to be comfortable! Seriously, everyone is different, there is just no perfect time.
What should we wear when it comes to the heat?
Light flowing gowns are always better for the bride. There are actual beach wedding gowns found in most bridal shops even if you live in a state without a beach. For the groom and male bridal party, suits and tuxedos are very rarely a good idea. Something more casual such as khakis and light, short-sleeved shirts are always best. Even consider wearing shorts. As I said with the potential of summer temps even in the winter, it is best to choose lighter clothes. This goes for guests as well.
May I bring my own bouquet, etc?
Yes, that is not a problem. The only thing we require if bringing your own flower girl basket for rose petals is they MUST be real, fresh petals. We will NOT allow you to put them down on the ground if they are not real. This is strictly enforced and we have had some get very angry over this. We take care of our beaches. Litter fines are $100. Silk bouquets, etc. are fine.
May we provide our own professional photographer?
Sure. If they need to utilize our decorations after the ceremony, we ask that they do so immediately so we can break things down.
Why do you offer only 10 chairs?
We are all about budget weddings. We have found over the years of experience that chairs on the beach are certainly something you can do without and save money. You can choose to have no chairs. If you have some elderly guests or just want them for immediate family, it is perfectly fine. Guests do not think twice about it. Obviously, you are not limited to 10 guests.
Can my family and guests take photos?
Yes, but if you have a professional photographer there, your guests can enjoy the ceremony. There have been countless times when we look out and nobody is watching the ceremony. We have had guests yell at “photographers”, move them out of the way, etc. I am not sure when it became ok to be invited to a wedding and then appoint yourself the photographer, but it seems to happen at every wedding. If you would like anything announced regarding not taking photos, let us know, we would be happy to announce it. Really happy!
Do I have to have someone walk me down?
Absolutely not. Many brides walk down alone.
I want someone to walk me, give me away, but who?
Anybody can walk you down. Any family member, mom, dad, or even both, stepfather, brother, kids, best friend, etc. This is your wedding and every situation is different- do what makes you happy! This person can give you away by being asked “who gives this woman to be married to this man?” Or just walk you in.
Do I have to have bridal party?
No, you do not!
Do we need witnesses? It is just us two.
In the state of Florida, you do not need witnesses. You will notice on the marriage license that there are two spots for witnesses which can be left blank or if you have a bridal party or guests you would like to sign, we can do that. But again, leaving them blank is fine.
For a vow renewal, do I need a marriage license?
No, you are already married. We do not need to see your original license either.
How do I get a Florida marriage license?
Whether you are local or destination, visit our Marriage License Information page to learn everything you need to know.
When will my balance be due? And how do I pay?
Balances are due one month before the wedding date. As with the deposit, a check is preferred. We keep our prices down to help you. Please help us by paying by check or money order so we can avoid paying credit card/debit card fees. We can certainly send you an invoice for CC/debit payments if needed. Overseas and Canadian payments need to be made through Pay Pal. This way payments can be made in US dollars.
Do you provide a place to change?
No, we do not. Beach parks have restrooms, though they are not ideal. Most come dressed even if using a beach park for their ceremony.
Do you have a referral for someone to come to me for hair/makeup?
Yes, if it is a local hotel or home, we do have someone that can help you. “Local” meaning the Cocoa Beach, Merritt Island, Satellite Beach, and Indialantic area. Once you are booked, you will receive the “help list” with the local information. We can also refer you to someone that will come to the Orlando/Kissimmee area.
Many of our couples will stay in the Cocoa Beach area for the night to make things less stressful especially for morning weddings.
I have my own officiant, is this OK?
Yes, you will need to make sure they are qualified to perform a wedding in Florida. They should know the answer to this. If not, they need to contact the Courts to make sure. If ordained on the internet, please give this much thought… It is your responsibility to make sure your marriage is valid. They will be responsible for returning the license to courts to be recorded. This is part of their job of marrying you. Just as it is ours if we marry you.
Do you charge extra on U.S. holidays?
We are closed on New Years Day, Easter, The Sunday and Monday of Memorial Day Weekend, July 4th, The Sunday and Monday of Labor Day Weekend, the entire Thanksgiving weekend (4 days), Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.
We do weddings on the following days, but there is a holiday fee $50-$150 depending on what’s contracted and which vendors are used: Good Friday and the Saturday before Easter, the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend and Labor Day Weekend, New Year’s Eve.
What days do you do weddings?
We do weddings 7 days a week, except for the US holidays above. Start times depend on the time of the year, the day of the week, the number of guests, and what needs to be set up, etc.
Do I need a permit for my wedding?
No. At this time, no permits are needed. However, if this should ever change, whether it be by the city or county, the couple whether contracted or not will be responsible for any costs. We have been providing Cocoa Beach Weddings and other cities in Brevard County for almost 14 years. This has never been a topic. If it were implemented, our best guess would be that it wouldn’t cost much. But that is just a guess.
Where does my engagement ring go?
The wedding rings go on the left hand most of the time. There are some countries where it is customary to go on the right hand. If you have an engagement ring, the wedding band needs to go underneath, remember, closest to your heart. So this means you need to put the engagement ring on the other hand for the ceremony. You can immediately put it on top or wait. His ring will be much easier. If you are having trouble getting the ring on, then the recipient might need to help a little.
Do you do weddings before we sail out of the port?
Yes, we do many before you set sail. We have found the best time to start the ceremony is around 10 am. If you have a larger group, you might start a little earlier for photos.
How far is Cocoa Beach from Port Canaveral?
That, of course, depends on where exactly you are in Cocoa Beach. Nothing is far from anything here, as we are a small city. We would venture to say the farthest you might be is 8-12 miles.