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Legal vs. Symbolic Ceremony... :0S Help!

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#11 krishna69z

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  • 209 posts

    Posted 30 July 2009 - 06:37 PM

    We've decided that we've got much better places for the 1200$ that it's going to cost us to legalize our documents to legally get married in Cuba so we're going to do the symbolic ceremony and get it legalized when we get home. We're just not going to tell any of our guests (especially my mother!!!). To us it will be our real wedding and feels better than paying the "marriage tax" of having your documents "legalized"

    Good luck with your decision, just make sure YOU are comfortable with it never mind anyone else.

    #12 EDSROSA

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    • 510 posts

      Posted 30 July 2009 - 08:40 PM

      We are doing a symbolic wedding for a couple of reasons, my FI was previously married so it would have cost us more money for translation of documents the $1000 diff btn symbolic and legal was put towards our honeymoon. Find out if your resort requires a marriage cert prior to performing your symbolic ceremony (My hotel does not) because if they dont you could always have a legal ceremony after you get back from your DW

      Good luck

      #13 SSNM

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      • 675 posts

        Posted 30 July 2009 - 11:31 PM

        I just got an email from Dreams Palm Beach that you do not need any documentation to have a symbolic ceremony; therefore, you could just do the symbolic, have it exactly how you want it, when you want it, and then sign papers in your own country afterwards (or before if that makes you feel better).

        But just like everyone has said, go with your gut. I, too, want my first wedding kiss to be the one where I am legally married so I completely feel your angst. But I still think what happened with your friend's wedding would be the most ideal situation because you get the benefits of both worlds; a personalized ceremony and then the legalization in the same day in a nice and very cost effective resort; a rare combination as far as destination weddings go in my opinion :) I am soo going to ask about that!

        #14 ACH2009

        • Jr. Member
        • 330 posts

          Posted 31 July 2009 - 01:25 PM

          We had a Catholic ceremony at DPC so we had to get legally married beforehand. I was worried about the same thing, however I can tell you that it did not make that day any less special for me. Having the legal ceremony here made it much easier and it didn't take away from our wedding day. We never told anyone that we were already legally married therefore it didn't take away from their experience either.
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          #15 lesandlynda

          • Jr. Member
          • 199 posts

            Posted 31 July 2009 - 03:03 PM

            Hey Taratoons - as you can see from the responses, it's a very personal and individual preference. Either way is popular and often done. The key is to decide what YOU want (as was already said) Take some alone time and really reflect what ultimately feels right inside. There is no wrong choice. Only options. You pick and decide - then be confident it's the right choice. You are the only one who can know what's best for you.

            You either make the right decision, or you make the decision right......win/win. Relax and enjoy - it'll all work out .......

            #16 Ottawa Bride

            Ottawa Bride
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            • 37 posts

              Posted 31 July 2009 - 05:53 PM

              We've decided to do both. Originally, we were just going to do the civil ceremony - make it legal, get it done and over with in ten minutes then move on to the party! Luckily, our travel agent is a destination wedding specialist and is also fluent in French, English and Spanish... she will be taking care of the translation of the documents for us and giving us instructions on when to get the paperwork in order and where to go to get things done (also helps when you live in the capital and can just drive to the Dominican consulate!)... her fees for taking care of documentation as well as arranging everything with the coordinator at our resort is pretty minimal (I believe $250ish - keeping in mind that most of our guests are also booking through her).... all to say that the legalization part of the civil ceremony hasn't really been a worry for us.

              Now for the decision to also add a symbolic ceremony... though I thought it would be nice to get it over with quickly, the more I thought about it, the more I wanted an actual 'ceremony' (and I don't mean to offend anybody by saying this)... to me, I just felt that adding a symbolic ceremony would make it more personal and less 'legal'. I got to thinking that I didn't want it to be a matter of "Do you? yes. Do you? yes. sign here, sign here, you're married, yay!" I wanted meaningful readings and though we're not super religious, it meant something to me to have our marriage blessed. We too have contacted Pastor Rick York and he has agreed to come to the resort the day of our wedding... apparently, the judge does his thing first and then Pastor York follows with a Christian ceremony. When we first asked our wedding planner about adding a symbolic ceremony as well, we were told that we would have to buy both packages through the resort (the civil wedding package as well as the symbolic wedding package... which we didn't want to have to do)... I'm not sure whether his prices vary depending on location, but for our resort Pastor York's charge is $300 plus the cost of a day pass - a little easier on the wallet! Just another option :)

              #17 shoyum

              • Jr. Member
              • 159 posts

                Posted 11 August 2009 - 11:18 AM

                I am going to be doing a symbolic ceremony, mainly because of the cost factor and all the paperwork that is needed otherwise. We will just gett married at home before we leave but not tell our guests. We are saving around $1000 by doing this and we dont have to go through the headache of getting all the documents translated into spanish.

                #18 Kits55

                • Member
                • 607 posts
                • Wedding Location:Secrets Maroma Beach
                • LocationRiviera Maya, Mexico

                Posted 11 August 2009 - 12:06 PM

                Haha! Chicken nuggets vs. a Big Mac! I am just as indecisive as you it sounds like!! It took me over three months to find and decide on which resort to have our wedding at. And OF COURSE I kept second guessing myself until it actually happened. I am so indecisive that sometimes I'll just ask my husband if I should have a cookie or whatever it might be. It's really sad!

                We chose a legal ceremony and I was VERY adamant about having a legal ceremony in Mexico. I really wanted to be married on April 25 because it was one year since we were engaged. I usually don't like same date big events BUT I did want something easy to remember since I'm not always the best at remembering dates! haha

                For Mexico and at our particular resort (secrets maroma beach) it was a pretty simple occasion. We DID have to be at the resort three FULL business days before the actual wedding day. We DID have to have blood tests but they were quick and painless (they took blood from the brachial artery as opposed to just a simple finger prick) even though the resort doctor showed up about an hour late.

                We had our blood tests on a Thursday and got married on a Friday. I think we possibly could have arrived at our resort on Wednesday instead of Tuesday. I think the main reason for the three day rule is because the blood tests can take longer to process at certain times?

                At our resort we did NOT need any extra paperwork or anything to make our marriage legal. We only needed our passports. I have NO idea how we got away with that considering that some girls need practically their entire life stories.

                I also did not want our guests to ever find out that we had legally wed either before or after our Mexico ceremony. I know that no one would have found out if we didn't want people to but I felt like I was cheating myself and them if we had a symbolic ceremony.

                If I could do it all over again I would still have a legal ceremony although I would be more prepared for sure! Because you may be getting married at resort that requires a lot of paperwork for legal ceremonies it will be up to you whether you have the time and inclination to get all of the paperwork processed. I will say that it only took about 2 months for us to receive our English translated marriage license.

                Good luck and let me know if I can help in any way!

                #19 floridagyrl82

                • Newbie
                • 8 posts

                  Posted 18 August 2009 - 12:11 AM

                  Decisions, decisions. My fiancee and I are leaning towards the symbolic ceremony. We still haven't 100% decided but it would save us a lot stress and money doing it this way. Does anyone know if PPC offers a religious symbolic ceremony? Has anyone done this?

                  krishna69z Good luck deciding!

                  #20 nsbride2010

                  • Sr. Member
                  • 2,528 posts

                    Posted 18 August 2009 - 11:11 AM

                    My FI and I are marrying in Punta Cana on Canada Day next year, and after enough thought we decided to do a Symbolic Ceremony in Punta Cana and are going to get married here in Canada on June 21st (the first official day of summer!) to avoid the extra cost and paperwork. We told my parents, simply because we need witnesses at the wedding at the Courthouse, but even my FI's parents will be in the dark about it! For us here in Nova Scotia it costs only about 480 dollars total for the licence, cert., ceremony and change of name, compared to about 1200 for a legal ceremony in DR. I mean to each his own, but this is what works for us! :)

                    Good luck deciding! :)
                    Enjoying marital bliss since July 1st, 2010

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