Los Angeles, the city of Angels. From the Hollywood sign and the beaches to the California sun and the bustling city streets, getting married in Los Angeles is exciting and fun.
Whether you’ve traveled from Arizona to L.A. thousands of times, or have never stepped foot, are deep in your wedding planning, or are in the initial stages and hoping to host the best day of your life in this city — here is everything you need to know about getting married in Los Angeles.
Getting Married in Los Angeles: The Basics
One of California’s biggest cities, LA has everything. But sometimes that comes with a price. The average wedding costs around $30,000. If you’re serious about LA, anticipate spending around $33,000 or more.
Although it can be pricey, you can’t beat the location and transportation. LAX is centrally-located and the largest airport in California. There’s public transportation to get from the airport to many different locations (including the beaches!), as well as Uber/Lyft.
1. Get Your Marriage License
As of the iconic June 26, 2015, where Supreme Court ruled that all same-sex partners have the constitutional right to marry, Los Angeles has quickly become a prime spot for same-sex marriages.
This city is one of the most LGBTQ-friendly cities in the world and it’s easy to find supportive vendors, locations, etc.
You can obtain a marriage license at the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder or County Clerk Branch Offices. Whether you’re getting married at a courthouse or other venue, it’s important to follow the license and civil ceremony processes.
You’ll need a valid ID/passport/birth certificate, dissolution/annulment papers if you were previously married, and pay a fee for the license as well as a $25 civil ceremony fee, if applicable.
*An important note: The LA County RR/CC does not record any marriage licenses that aren’t obtained in the county. If you got your license somewhere else — they won’t record or have the record on file!
2. Find Your Location/Accommodations
If you’ve decided on a civil ceremony, you might not need to worry about vendors, locations, and accommodations (unless you have out-of-town folks coming to your ceremony). If you’re having an official ceremony, then you have some planning to do.
It’s important to start thinking about your location and accommodations early. That way you can book right away and not worry about trying to find places that work for your specific dates. Because LA is such a large city, places go fast! The earlier you can prepare, the better.
Research different places and make sure to book hotel rooms in advance, as these go quickly depending on what concerts, sports games, etc. may be going on around the time of your wedding.
3. Find Your Vendors
Your vendors are what can make or break your wedding. Before booking, it’s important to get a headcount (or estimate) of how many people will be attending. This can help you make decisions about chairs, tables, and food, for example.
When it comes to catering, you want the best for your guests (and your wallet).
Places like Catering of Paris, for example, are perfect because they’re quality food at a quality price. The food you offer at your wedding is important and not something you want to be cheap about. It’s better to spend a little more here to ensure your guests are satisfied throughout the day/night.
4. Consider the Weather
Getting married in Los Angeles means that you’ll have good weather majority of the time. But if you’re not from the area, it’s a good idea to look into the weather so you won’t be faced with the unexpected.
LA doesn’t get typically get much rain. This makes an outdoor wedding ideal, but do keep in mind that the spring you might have fog/cloud covers from the water. The spring temperatures vary from low 60-70s, but the summer may creep up to the high 80s. If you have guests who will be sitting outside, it’s important to keep those things in mind.
If you’re thinking about a beach wedding, keep in mind that beach temperatures can be about 10-20 degrees cooler than inland locations!
5. Plan Fun Activities for Guests
Your guests (whether local or out-of-town) will love engaging with LA and getting to know what the city offers. If you really want to impress them, create a “city to-do” list with some of the best local restaurants, shopping centers, bars, museums, parks, etc.
Now You’re Ready to Start Planning!
Getting married in Los Angeles is exciting, beautiful, and fun! Whether you’ve already started putting ideas into motion, or are in the browsing stages, hopefully, this guide has given you some points to keep in mind as you prepare for your big day.
For other wedding tips and ideas, be sure to browse our website. Happy planning!