Over the past 13 years of planning weddings in Fiji we've been asked a lot of questions - that's what we're here for! The following is just a sample of those most frequently asked, but if there's something we haven't covered, please send us an email or chat on facebook.
Q. Is our wedding legal?
A. Yes, your marriage in Fiji is legal and binding and recognised worldwide
Q. What is the process for obtaining a Fijian Marriage Licence?
A. Essence Tours will organise your Marriage Licence for you prior to your departure for Fiji. To do this, you will need to provide the following documentation at least 1 month before your wedding:
- Birth Certificates for the Bride and Groom
- Valid Passports (with at least 6 months validity)
- Decree Nisi if either party has been previously married
- Death Certificate if previous spouse is deceased
- Certificate of Single Status or Certificate of No Legal Impediment is required to be produced if:
- Marriage is between a Fijian citizen and a foreign citizen
- Marriage by former citizens of Fiji
- Marriage between foreign citizens residing in Fiji
- Marriage applicants with visitors’ visas, or bona fide tourists to Fiji from Australia, New Zealand, USA, Canada, UK and EEC countries are exempted from the above requirement. Different rules apply for some other countries.
- Marriage applicants from Japan must produce the Koseki-Shouhon to certify their personal details
- Two witnesses who are 21 years of age and over must be present (If couple are traveling alone, most resorts are able to provide witnesses)
Please note that the marriageable age in Fiji is 18 years
Q. What do I have to do to register our wedding in Australia?
A. Nothing! Your marriage is registered in Fiji, and will always be registered in Fiji
– you can’t register it here as well, and there's no need to. It’s the same as if you were
married here and went to live abroad, your marriage would still remain registered in Australia.
Q. We’ve decided to get married in Fiji, but we’ve never been there before …. Where do we start?
A. Some couples prefer to do their own research and plan their weddings direct with
the various suppliers. But, if you’ve never been to Fiji before, or if you don’t have time to
spend many hours on the internet, you should consider using our services.
Essence Tours will act as a wedding planner and travel agent, at no additional cost to
you. We will look after all aspects of your wedding day and travel arrangements for
you and your guests, leaving you stress free and able to focus on the fun side of planning your wedding.
Q. When is the best time to get married in Fiji?
A. Fiji has much the same weather pattern as Australia's tropical north, so their wet season is traditionally between December and March. However, some of the best specials are available during these months, like free wedding packages, discounted
accommodation, etc. So don’t discard this period without checking out what’s available. While there might be more chance of rain, that can happen any time during the year, and the resorts are well prepared with “wet weather” options.
Q. What is the average price of a wedding in Fiji?
A. How long is a piece of string? The cost of your wedding will depend on the
resort you choose, the package that best suits you, the number of guests that travel with you, and whether you opt to add extra items or engage outside suppliers. However, as a rule of thumb, if you budget for AUD10,000.00 you should be able to achieve your wedding and travel, particularly if you choose one of the “all inclusive” wedding packages.
Q. How far ahead should I plan my destination wedding?
A. 12-15 months is an ideal amount of time, however, it is possible to plan it with only a
few months to spare if you’re eloping or just taking a small group of family and friends with you. Keep in mind that the more notice you can give your guests the more likely they will be able to plan and budget to attend
Q. How long do I need to be in Fiji prior to being married?
A. It is recommended that you are in Fiji three days prior to your wedding, to give you time to meet with your Wedding Coordinator and go over last minute details.
Q. How can my wedding guests book their trip?
A. To make your guests’ experience of coming to your wedding as easy as possible, you
should have us set up packages for them. It’s important to make sure that rooms are set aside at your chosen resort for your guests, to avoid the disappointment of not being able to get accommodation, particularly during peak travel periods.
Q. Which are the best resorts in Fiji to organise a wedding?
A. Nearly every resort in Fiji offers wedding packages, so it comes down to which
resort is right for you and your guests. Things that need to be taken into consideration would be:
- Do you want a garden, beach or chapel wedding?
- How many guests do you think will be traveling with you?
- Will you have children, elderly or disabled guests in your group?
- Would you like a “whole of resort” booking, ie depending on your group size, it may be possible to select a resort that will accommodate you and your guests exclusively ... great fun!
- What facilities the resorts offer, eg activities, Kids Club, babysitting, etc
Q. What is the best time to get married?
A. If you want to have some sunset photos, then from 3:00-4:00pm is a good
time for your wedding. For the most part your ceremony will take approximately 30 minutes and you need to allow another 30 minutes for toasts and photos with family and friends before going off for the bridal party photos. This timing will allow for some good daylight shots as well as the beautiful sunset photos for which Fiji is famous.
Q. How do I pack my dress for the flight?
A. The best option is to take your dress as carry on hand luggage packed in a garment bag. Advise the staff on check-in that you are carrying your wedding dress. Once you board the aircraft ask the hostesses to assist you by hanging your dress, or if there is nowhere to hang, then to help you lay it flat in the overhead lockers.
Q. Is it better to stay on the mainland or go out to one of the islands for our wedding?
A. There are any number of beautiful resorts, both on the mainland, or out on the islands, and you would be happy whatever your choice, and there are beautiful chapels and beaches in both locations. However, there are a few things to consider that might influence your final decision.
- The resorts on the mainland are more easily accessible (mostly within 1.5 hours drive from Nadi Airport) and most offer rooms with wheelchair access if you think you will have any elderly guests, or guests with mobility issues
- Some island resorts don’t have a jetty for disembarking from the launch, necessitating a transfer from the larger vessel to a smaller boat and then onto the beach. This may be a problem for some of your guests.
- When you choose an island resort, you need to be aware that if you are wanting a sunset wedding it will necessitate paying for the overnight accommodation and meals of the celebrant, photographer, DJ, etc.
- You also need to be aware that the last launch out to the Mamanuca Island Resorts departs Denarau Marina at 3:15pm daily and most flights from Australia will miss that connection (with the exception of the overnight flights), leaving you or your guests with the option of an overnight in Nadi or taking a water taxi. Water taxis can be cost effective if there are a number of guests able to share it, otherwise, they can be more expensive.
Q. If I contract with an outside supplier to provide some services for our wedding will the resort charge me more?
A. This varies from resort to resort, and in some instances, yes they do. This is something you should check with your resort before you contract with any outside supplier. It is always a good idea to check with your resort first as to whether they can provide the service you want without the additional expense of an external contractor.