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If you're thinking of eloping, read this first!

If you're thinking of eloping, read this first!

The emotional stress and financial strain of hosting a wedding makes some couples think about eloping as an easier option than walking down the aisle in the big white dress. But what might seem an easier option at the time can have its own set of pitfalls if not handled correctly.

For every bride and groom-to-be who consider running off and tying the knot in secret when it all gets too hard, we play Devil's Advocate to decipher if this is the best decision for you.

1. Both parties need to be committed

Just like a happy marriage, the idea of eloping requires commitment from both sides of the fence - the bride and groom. If one half of the happy couple loves the idea, but the other is dragging their well-manicured wedding toes, then you need to examine both side's motivations. If one party has regrets about the way your marriage begins, this can harbour resentment and isn't a great beginning for a lifetime of wedded bliss.

2. Weigh up the pros and cons 

If you have equal agreement from both sides that elopement is the best way forward, you next need to consider what the potential fall-out may be from family members and friends. If you don't anticipate this to be overly dramatic and you deem it to be worth the risk, then it's your decision to proceed. But be honest about how you will really feel about potential fall-out, as negativity surrounding your nuptials is not something you want to ha

ve to deal with as newlyweds.

If there are key players you're concerned about (parents, siblings, BFF's), it may be best to let them know you're plan beforehand to allow them time to adjust to the idea.

3. Destination decisions

If eloping to an exotic destination becomes just as much hassle and almost as expensive as planning the big day at home, remember what your reasons were for deciding to elope in the first place. Deciding on the location for your elopement can be just as important as choosing a wedding venue. Continue to think about what is important to you as a couple and ensure it meets these criteria. If you're heading overseas, remember to check out the legalities to ensure your union is a valid one.

4. Make your announcement count

How you choose to break the news can have a big impact on how friends and loved ones react. An email image, invitation card, social media snap or snail mail postcard are popular options - remember to keep your message succinct, positive and to-the-point. Some couples choose to have a more relaxed celebration following their elopement, to offer loved ones the opportunity to share in their happiness and acknowledge their official union.

Elopement: yes or no?

Like every decision made in your journey to become betrothed, it is up to you as an individual couple to decide what suits best. However you decide to embark on your nuptials, you can find every detail to create your ideal celebration at