Weddings in Jamaica

A wedding in Jamaica transforms your special day into a magical one

Photo credit: © Photo credit: © Eastwest Imaging |

Getting Married in Jamaica

If you are seeking an unforgettable wedding experience, you should consider hosting your big event in beautiful Jamaica. From exquisite landscapes and excellent climate conditions to delicious cuisine and a romantic built-in honey moon, a wedding event in Jamaica guarantees to deliver lasting memories.

Have you always imagined saying your nuptials while waves gently lapped onto the shore behind you?  Did you dismiss the idea because you thought it would be too complicated and certainly too pricey? Think again. A bit of exploration and heavy helping of meticulous planning can help make your dream come true.

Pros and Cons

Some people find that wedding event planning can be quite stressful, particularly when you have no choice but to place all your confidence in an event manager in a foreign nation.  For so many people, the benefits outnumber the negative aspects by far. Still, a destination wedding is not for everyone. The following list of pros and cons will allow you to decide if getting married in Jamaica is the most ideal choice for you.


  • Cost.  While you might not expect it, a Caribbean wedding can actually save you money - including the price of your flight. This is because destination weddings are inclined to be smaller events that fewer guests attend, therefore costing you less money in table settings and food. Many resorts also offer wedding and honeymoon package discounts, thus improving your savings even more. 
  • Weather.  Climate is a key factor for any event, particularly if you are planning your wedding at an outdoor venue. The average temperature in Jamaica ranges from between 80 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit throughout the year.  Rain showers do occur, but they are usually over before they begin. 
  • Planning.  Couples scheduling a destination wedding commonly hire an event planner (or one is assigned to you by your hotel when you purchase a wedding package through them).  This makes certain that a specialist thoughtfully takes every single aspect of your wedding into consideration.
  • Friends and Family. Choosing a destination wedding means that you can scale down your guest list - you don't need to feel obligated to extend an invitation to an uncle you aren't that close to, or your old college classmate.


  • Cost.  Many people feel burdened with the responsibility to pay for air travel and the hotel stay for their entire wedding party and guests.  If you decide to include all these expenses within your budget, a Caribbean wedding will undoubtedly cost more in the end.
  • Weather.  Jamaica is situated within the hurricane belt; therefore it is absolutely essential to remember that scheduling a wedding celebration during hurricane season (which lasts from the beginning of June through the end of November) presents a slight risk.
  • Planning. Because you will not be able to personally see and choose wedding items for the majority of the time leading up to your nuptials, you may find yourself becoming uneasy, feeling as though everything is out of your control.
  • Legal issues.  While preparing for your Jamaica wedding, an essential concept to keep in mind is that the guidelines pertaining to marriage licenses could differ from those you would come across back home. Obtaining a marriage license in Jamaica calls for time, so a suddenly scheduled wedding may not be feasible.
  • Family and friends.  Everyone you hope to have at your wedding may not be able to attend a destination wedding.

Why Choose Jamaica

Aside from the obvious beauty and tropical ambiance that hosting a wedding in Jamaica supplies, why would you choose to get married in Jamaica over all of the other options in the world?  Because planning a wedding in Jamaica is easy.  Jamaica is known as the birth place of the all-inclusive resort, and for as long as these resorts have been around, people have been having weddings at them.  This means that the staff at resorts and other local event planners are well versed in planning weddings with  couples living in other countries.  Their experience and expertise will make it very easy for you to plan a wedding that is right for you and right for your budget. 

Local Wedding Customs

A reception in Jamaica is all about the food, and large quantities of it.  A great way for you to integrate Jamaican customs into your own wedding is by serving up some of the culinary delights that locals might also provide on their special day.  Curried goat dishes, rum punch, and spiced fruit cake are common choices.  If you have a sweet tooth, consider this: in Jamaica, numerous cakes are commonly served at the reception, and kept covered until they are served, as a surprise for the bride. 

The celebration of a new marriage on the island is traditionally not a one day event.  The Sunday after the official wedding ceremony would customarily see the wedding party attend church to pray for the longevity of the new marriage.  After church, everyone would retire to the home of the bride's parents for a second reception - typically a larger and more boisterous affair than the first.  This was called Tun T'anks Sunday, and if you enjoy a good party, you may consider adding this day to your roster of wedding events.

Types of Ceremonies

Your Jamaican wedding can truly be whatever you want it to be: indoors or out, large or small, extravagant or low key.  Many couples choose to marry in Jamaica because they want to say their vows on a beach, or in a garden amid the tropical flowers.  Regardless of where you choose to host your ceremony, there is one way to commemorate the start of your union that is perfect for an island locale: with a sand ceremony.  The way a sand ceremony works is that the bride and the groom each hold a vial of different colored sand that they will simultaneously pour into a new, clear, container.  This represents two separate lives joined together to create one.


Despite the fact that a destination wedding often carries a smaller price tag than an extravagant wedding in your home town, it is still imperative that you take some time to carefully create a budget. To achieve this, take time to plan with your future spouse and crank out a list of everything you imagine you might spend money on, based upon importance to you. These items might include the catering, location, photography, and attire, among numerous others. After doing a bit of quick research, designate a price limitation to each item on your list, then total everything up. This will give you a ball park figure of how much money you can anticipate spending. Bear in mind that this total will change as you prepare for your special day, and the ordered list of key items will help you to know instantly what things you can cut back on and which items you would rather spend money on.


The great thing about getting married in Jamaica is that you can file all of your paperwork and receive your marriage license before you even get to the island.  If you hire a wedding planner or go through a resort, they will give you a date by which you send them all of your paperwork (usually a month or more before the wedding date), and they will file for you.  The documentation you will be required to present will include birth certificates, photo copies of passports, and any death, divorce, or adoption certificates that are relevant.

The day of your wedding is one of the most memorable milestones of your life, and organizing a destination wedding in Jamaica may be an opportunity for you to make that day all the more special. Just imagine getting married on a warm day amid the palm trees, with the sounds of the nearby ocean. If this sounds like heaven to you, a wedding in Jamaica might be just your style.


Help us improve! We welcome your corrections and suggestions.