Weddings Traditions and Requirements in the Turks and Caicos

It takes more than hosting a wedding to be legally married in Turks and Caicos

Applying for a marriage license in Turks and Caicos is simple, if not time consuming.  While waiting for their license approval, couples have the time to meet with vendors and venues that they have been working with from a distance. 

This is also a good time to make any last minute changes to your plans – like adding a bit of island tradition to your ceremony.

Local Wedding Customs

The people of the Turks and Caicos islands come from varied backgrounds, but the most prevalent are Africans and European ex-patriots.  Though there are no strictly Turks and Caicos wedding traditions of note, couples who wish to honor the island during there ceremony do have some options.

Try using some African traditions, such as wearing vibrantly colored woven cloth and head dress instead of a pristine white dress and tuxedo; or  borrowing from the Caribbean as a whole.  In the Caribbean, it is customary for a spiced fruit cake to be served at the reception.

Another way to bring the islands in to your wedding is by pulling some of the things Turks and Caicos are known for into your wedding décor.  Choose to have a Caicos Caribbean Pine (the national tree) at your wedding site, incorporate Island Heather (the national flower) into your bouquet, or have your attendants wear what is considered to be the national dress (simple, loose fitting clothing indicative of what some of the islands original settlers may have worn, as well as hand woven hats).

Finally, you can opt to serve island fare.  Conch is an excellent choice because it has great importance in Turks and Caicos, but any freshly caught seafood, local produce, and regionally distilled rum will do.

Modern Requirements

After the couple has been in Turks and Caicos for three days (72 hours), they may submit their application for a marriage license at the Registrar General for Special Licenses.   The Registrar General is located on Providenciales, and is open Monday through Friday between the hours of 9:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.  Couples must submit original copies of the following documents, as well as $50(USD) along with any forms given to them by the Registrar General:

  • Passports.
  • Birth Certificates.
  • Sworn affidavit that each person's current marital status is single.
  • Certified copies of Divorce Certificate if one or more parties has been divorced.
  • Certified copies of Death Certificate if one of the parties is a widow or widower.
  • Deed poll or adoption paperwork stating any past name changes.
  • Letter stating each person's name, occupation, marital status, age, present address, and father's full name.

Processing of the marriage license could take up to three days.  After that time, the couple is free to get married at any time.  In Turks and Caicos, a civil service must be performed by a Turks and Caicos Marriage Officer in order to be legal. You can contact the Registrar General at 649-946-2800.

Whether you choose to add a bit of island flare to your wedding, or make plans that showcase your own vision of what a wedding should be, a service in Turks and Caicos while surely be like a dream.  Just make sure you plan enough time between your arrival on the islands and your wedding day to gain license approval.


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