Getting married in the UK (currently living in New Zealand)


Just curious if any poms are married/engaged to a kiwi living in New Zealand and whether they are planning to get married (or have got hitched) in the UK?

Me (a pom) is engaged to a kiwi and we are living in NZ. After a long time deciding when and where, we finally decided to get married in a civil ceremony (hotel) next September in England.

After contacting the Registrar at my hometown in the UK, we have been given new information, that we would have to be in the UK at least 7 days before we give notice to marry. Then on the 8th day, we can go in person to give notice - again it's back to the waiting game with 15 days to sit back until we can marry.

So, the total amount of time to stay in the UK is around 3 weeks. We had hoped to go on a honeymoon for 2 weeks if we arrive in the UK closer to the wedding day. If we have to go with the rules, then we would have to be away for at least 5-6 weeks and I'm not too sure my employer will let me have the time off.

I wondered if there is something we can do in New Zealand like giving notice at the embassy or something before we head to the UK?

It's driving me crazy!

If you can share your own experiences/advice, I'd love to hear from you!



  • I don't really know the legalities, but the only other way i can think around it is for you and your H2B to do the official marriage in NZ and then have a blessing in the UK? You can still have the blessing as if it were your wedding with a ceremony, readings, the white dress, bridesmaids, first dance, cake etc etc! image
  • 2012Bride2012Bride Posts: 318
    How about Scotland? There's no mandatory residency requirement.

    We are getting married in Scotland (live in London) and can post our forms to give notice, and then go and pick up the schedule 2 days before.
  • That seems like an excellent suggestion 2012Bride. Celeliza, I am sorry but as far as I am aware there is no way around this legal requirement in England. However, I would note that you can give notice up to a year before your big day, so maybe you could come over for 8 days as a holiday to visit your family some time in the years run up until your big day and then come back again for your wedding with no need to be there early or anything. I don't know if that's feasible with the cost of flights etc but it is something you could consider.
  • Hi,

    Thanks to those who responsed to my post.

    It's been quite stressful deciding what to do but we are getting closer to getting a clear mind on what we want to do.

    We have booked the hotel venue to get married and have the reception aswell so it's easier to be one place.

    My and fiancee have talked two options:

    1. Fly over 3/4 weeks before the wedding and have the wedding day as desired and follow the UK rules (giving notice etc).

    2. Get hitched at the Registry office here in NZ and get two witnesses to be there. Then have a blessing or ceremony in the UK at the hotel where we have booked.

    At the moment, we are considering option 2. We are both not religious so we might have a ceremony at the hotel as we will have been legally married. Does anyone know who can conduct the ceremony?


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