How to Legally Get Married in Kauai: What You Need To Know

Planning Resources

Download my Free Elopement Planning Guide HERE! 

more Helpful Resources 

About the author

Hi, I’m Megan and your story matters to me. You deserve to break your wedding day from the traditional mold into something that is uniquely you.

I specialize in intimate mountain weddings and elopements and love working with people who are stoked to get married in nature surrounded by their closest family and friends. I am here for you and to organically tell your story. 

Getting married? Check out my recent work here and connect with me here to learn more! 

Get my Free guide

elopement pricing

meet megan

contact megan

Hi There

I'm megan



planning resources


couple walking on the beach for their Kauai Wedding

Getting married in Kauai, Hawaii, is like a dream come true for many couples. Imagine saying your vows surrounded by stunning beaches, lush green mountains, and the soothing sounds of the ocean. But before you can live this dream, there’s something very important you need to do. Understanding the legal steps to getting married in Kauai is the first step! This might sound a bit boring compared to cake tasting and dress shopping, but it’s essential to make your dream wedding happen without any hiccups. In this blog, I’ll guide you through every step you need to take to legally tie the knot in Kauai, from paperwork to permits. Don’t worry, I’ll make it as simple and straightforward as possible, so you can get back to planning the fun parts of your big day!

Why Should You Get Married In Kauai?

Choosing Kauai for your wedding is literally like picking the most beautiful spot on Earth to start your life together. Here’s why Kauai is such an awesome choice for your big day:

Amazing Scenery

Kauai is called the “Garden Isle” because it’s so stunning with its incredible beaches, huge cliffs, and waterfalls. Imagine taking your wedding photos with these stunning places behind you! It’s like having your ceremony in the middle of a postcard.

Chill Vibes

Unlike some places that are super busy and crowded, Kauai has a calm and cozy feel. This means you and your guests can kick back and really enjoy the moment without rushing around. It’s perfect for making your wedding feel extra special and personal.

Location Variety

Whether you dream of saying “I do” with your toes in the sand, in a lush garden, or with a gorgeous sunset over the ocean, Kauai has it all. There are so many unique spots that you can pick one that feels just right for you and your partner.

Easy to Elope

If you’re thinking about eloping (getting married with just the two of you), Kauai is perfect. It’s easy to find your way around to look for the best spot, and also the island’s natural beauty makes every corner feel like a private paradise.

Overall, getting married in Kauai isn’t just about the location, it’s about starting your adventure together in the most magical way possible.

Steps To Getting Married In Kauai:

Getting married in Kauai is a straightforward process that involves a few important steps:

  1. Apply for a Marriage License Online: You can start this process by visiting the Department of Health website. There, you’ll fill out the necessary forms and pay for your marriage license. After completing this step, you will be given a locator number, which is essential for the next steps in the process.
  2. Meet Legal Requirements: It’s good to know that there are no state residence or U.S. citizenship requirements to get married in Kauai, making it accessible for couples from various places. The legal age for marriage in Kauai is 18 years for both males and females. For anyone 19 years of age or older, a valid ID or driver’s license is required. If you are 18, you must present a birth certificate.
  3. Hire a Licensed Officiant: Choose someone authorized in Hawaii to officiate your wedding. They can help handle the paperwork.
  4. Get Your Marriage License: Meet with an agent in Kauai to pick up your marriage license. You’ll need to bring your IDs and your locator ID from the online application.
  5. Have Your Wedding: With all the legalities sorted, it’s time for your ceremony! Have as big or as little of a celebration as you’d like.
  6. File Your Marriage Certificate: Your officiant will usually take care of this step. It’s filing your marriage certificate with the state to officially record your marriage.

Overall, it’s always a good idea to double-check any current requirements or updates with the Hawaii Department of Health, as rules can change. Getting married in Kauai is an adventure. Taking care of these steps ensures your big day will be as smooth and memorable as possible!

Some Things To Know About Getting Married In Kauai

Having your wedding or elopement in Kauai is not only about fulfilling legal requirements, there are several other aspects to consider for an ideal and stress-free celebration. Here’s what you should know:

Weather Patterns: 

Kauai is known for its varied climate zones, so understanding the weather patterns is crucial. The north and east coasts receive more rain, contributing to their lush landscapes, while the south and west coasts are drier and sunnier. Planning your wedding during Hawaii’s dry season (May to October) might offer more predictability weather-wise.

Choosing the Right Venue:

Beyond the beaches, Kauai offers multiple breathtaking venues such as waterfalls, beaches, and luxurious resorts. Each venue has its unique charm and restrictions; some may require photography permits or have specific rules regarding decorations and noise levels. (Also, I always help with the permit process!) Some couples I captured in the past include a Cliffside South Shore Elopement and Sunrise Waimea Canyon Elopement if you want some location ideas!

Cultural Respect: 

Incorporating Hawaiian traditions, such as a lei exchange or a blessing, can add a meaningful touch to your ceremony. However, it’s important to approach these customs with respect and understanding. Consider hiring a local officiant or Kumu (teacher) who can authentically and respectfully integrate Hawaiian culture into your wedding.

Guest Considerations: 

If you’re inviting guests from off-island, provide them with information on accommodations, transportation, and activities around Kauai. Since travel to Hawaii can be a considerable expense, sending save-the-dates early will give your guests ample time to plan and possibly find travel deals.

Eco-Friendly Planning: 

Kauai’s natural beauty is unmatched, and maintaining this environment is crucial. Consider eco-friendly wedding practices, like using local and seasonal flowers, minimizing waste, and choosing vendors who prioritize sustainability.

Adventure Activities: 

Kauai is an adventure-lover’s paradise. From helicopter tours of the Na Pali Coast to snorkeling, hiking, or exploring Waimea Canyon, there are countless activities for you and your guests. Planning group activities before or after your wedding day can make the experience even more unforgettable.

Relaxation and Honeymooning: 

After the festivities, take advantage of Kauai’s serene beauty for relaxation or your honeymoon. Whether it’s a secluded beach stay, a resort experience, or an adventurous exploration of the island, Kauai offers a perfect start to married life.

couple taking photos in Kauai

Average Costs of Eloping vs. A Wedding In Kauai

The cost of getting married in Kauai can vary significantly depending on whether you’re planning to elope or have a traditional wedding.

Eloping in Kauai:

  • The cost for a couple eloping in Kauai typically ranges between $5,000 and $10,000, covering the essentials like photography and the ceremony.
  • Elopement costs in Hawaii are relatively affordable, with expenses as low as $65 for the application process.

Traditional Wedding in Kauai:

  • A traditional wedding in Kauai, on the other hand, can be considerably more expensive. For a wedding with around 75 guests, the average cost is estimated between $40,000 and $60,000. This estimate focuses solely on wedding expenses and does not include additional costs such as travel and accommodations.

Comparative Considerations:

  • The primary distinction in cost between eloping and hosting a traditional wedding in Kauai lies in the scale and scope of the event. Eloping generally has fewer guests, which significantly reduces costs related to venues, catering, and decorations.
  • Traditional weddings tend to involve more extensive planning, guest management, and customization, leading to higher overall costs.

Overall, whether you choose to elope or have a traditional wedding in Kauai, both options offer unique experiences against the stunning backdrop of the island. Eloping offers a more intimate and cost-effective approach, while a traditional wedding allows for a larger celebration with family and friends.

couple walking on the beach for their Kauai Wedding

The Next Step

Now that you know how to get married legally in Kauai, the next fun step is capturing those unforgettable moments. That’s where I come in! Booking me as your photographer means you’ll have beautiful photos to remember your special day forever. I know all the amazing spots in Kauai and can help make your wedding photos as magical as the island itself. 

Head over to my website and fill out my contact form. From there, we can set up your free consultation call. Your love story is unique, and I’m here to capture every smile, tear, and laugh along the way. Let’s make your wedding memories last a lifetime together!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *