How to get married in Seattle

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How to get married in Seattle

Getting married in Seattle is popular and it's easy to see why. It's ultra-hip and has that Pacific Northwest chill charm that we all love, with tons of amazing locales and outdoor opportunities for your guests. From mountains to forests to quirky urban venues, the birthplace of grunge is still bleeding edge cool. To get married in Seattle, you'll need to know how to navigate all the legal requirements for making it official in Seattle and the surrounding areas.

We've got everything from the nitty-gritty of how to get legally married in Seattle, to a few of our favorite Seattle weddings, to special tips for how to save money in Seattle.

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Tips for planning a wedding in Seattle

Budgeting efficiently in Seattle can be challenging as its popularity makes it spendier than most cities. But you can totally cut your costs even more by limiting your guest list, choosing off-season dates, and avoiding heavily trafficked weekends like Seattle Pride Parade in June, Emerald City ComiCon in March, and the Seattle Marathon in November. Check with your venue AND local hotels to see if there any big events that could cause you issues with pricing, parking, and hotel block rates.

Ways to save in your Seattle wedding budget:

  • Look into non-traditional venues like restaurants for hosting smaller gatherings.
  • Choose in-season flowers for your decor OR opt for no flowers and decorate with items that mean something to you instead (board games? Funko Pop?)
  • Prioritize what's important to you and minimize the rest: if great food and a good photographer are important, see if you can skip things like a limo, a huge cake, and expensive favors.

Seattle is known for its overcast, misty days, but downpours are rare. The temperatures stay pretty moderate, ranging from highs in the 50s to the 70s on average. Be prepared for misty rain but don't let that stop you from enjoying some outdoor time. Just bring a brolly for fun photo ops!

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How to get legally married in Seattle

All couples who want to get married in Seattle must obtain a marriage license. Once you’re approved, there is a three-day waiting period before you can hold the wedding ceremony, and the license is valid for 60 days. You'll want to see all of the documents and requirements you'll need to fulfill at the Seattle Municipal Court.

Changing your name in Seattle
If you're planning to change your name after the wedding, get a few copies of your license to have on hand when obtaining your new documents. Hit up your local Social Security office, update your Passport, head to the DMV, and update your voter registration.

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Seattle wedding officiant requirements

Seattle does not require minister registration before performing a marriage. If you're getting married outside of the city, you should always check with the local city or town clerk to check that your officiant can perform the wedding in that jurisdiction.

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Offbeat Seattle wedding vendors

You may think finding skilled wedding vendors in Seattle is easy — it's a cool city with an abundance of amazing venues! But you may be overwhelmed with options and might have to do some research to find vendors who work with all budgets and all styles. You can find offbeat-friendly Seattle wedding vendors in our Vendor Guide. Don't miss our online vendors, too, for honeymoon registries, stationery, gifts, ketubahs, rings, guests books, wedding websites, and more.

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What did we miss about getting married in Seattle?

Email us your wedding planning tips and favorite Seattle vendors!

Ready to start planning a Seattle wedding? Head to our Tools page for wedding planning resources, our big planning checklist, editable planning spreadsheets, and TONS of wedding planning help and info.

Wedding Planning Tools

Photo credits: Jacquelyn Portolese Photography; Sioned Abuan; Lara Schneider Photography; Mary Kalhor Photography; Jenny GG Photography; Jonas Seaman

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