A request that I seem to be getting more and more frequently recently is for help with planning a wedding vow renewal in Central Park. Quite often I will get an inquiry about a vow renewal and I tell couples that we generally charge the same for a vow renewal as for a wedding, because it takes the same amount of time, effort and costs to do it. In many cases, though, a couple renewing their vows don’t want to spend as much on the occasion as a couple who are getting married. The problem is, if they want me to write a ceremony for them, provide an officiant to perform the ceremony and a photographer to take as many photos as they would for a wedding, then it’s difficult for me to charge any less than I would for a wedding, because that’s exactly what we do for a wedding.
I hope I’ve reached a compromise in my new Elopement Package than should be quite appealing to couples wanting to renew their vows as well as eloping couples. If it’s just the two of you (and maybe a very small gathering of guests) and you want to renew your vows in Central Park from Monday to Thursday, then I have a deal for you! We can do all that I’ve listed above, but with just one hour of taking photographs instead of the two hours that I suggest for a wedding for over $300 less than our most popular wedding package.
I originally designed this package for eloping couples, who often come from abroad and might be in town for several days, so can be flexible on what date they get married. Photographers understandably don’t want to commit to coming out for just one hour of work when that could mean that they would be unavailable for a full day of photography at another wedding. That’s more unlikely during the week than at weekends, though, and the photographers I work with get steady referrals from me, so are happy to take on some shorter jobs during the week to accommodate the couples who don’t feel the need to take very long taking photos around Central Park.
Couples have lots of different reasons for renewing wedding vows. Sometimes couples who got married with a rather basic ceremony at City Hall in the US or a registry office in the UK might contact me for a more personalized experience where they truly get to show their personalities and their love for each other. Sometimes I work with couples who have been married for many years and they have come to either an anniversary or birthday, and they want to mark the milestone with a vow renewal. Sometimes couples just happen to be New York for a vacation, and they decide to renew their vows while they are there, which turns the occasion in to an opportunity for a lovely family photo shoot in beautiful Central Park if they have their kids with them.
Sometimes a couple may have been through some challenges, such as serious health issues, or commitment issues, and it feels right to renew vows. One couple told me that their original real wedding was a disaster due to some family members’ actions, so they wanted to do it all again and enjoy it this time! For so many reasons; an already married couple might want to have a ceremony that is unique to them, in a beautiful location, and perhaps a small celebration with friends and family in an incredible city with something for everyone.
In the past, I have planned renewals or blessings for vastly varying sizes of groups. Because every ceremony I write is unique to each couple, we can cater to anyone. If you want to have a big group with you for your vow renewal, and you want to do it on a weekend, then due to the time commitment from all involved, then the price is probably going to be the same for a vow renewal or blessing as it is for a legally binding wedding. The only difference from our perspective is that a license is signed at the end of a wedding.
When renewing their wedding vows, a couple should consider which parts of their original wedding they might want to keep, and which parts they would want to change. It all depends on how things went the first time around. I have shared a few thoughts about in this previous blog post about renewing your wedding vows in Central Park.
For more information to help you with planning your own Central Park marriage vow renewal, visit our website, check out our prices here, or “like” us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram and follow us on Pinterest where you will find lots of lovely photos and many more inspiring stories of real weddings and vow renewals. Please note that the photographs used in this blog post are of weddings as well as vow renewals.