Elopements and Intimate Weddings; What is the difference

Intimate or Elopement

Elopements and Intimate Weddings; What is the Difference?

Over the years, both elopements and intimate weddings have become incredibly popular thanks to a move away from ‘traditional’ weddings and a desire for more low-key or private ceremonies. However, while you may have heard both of these terms when researching different types of weddings, you might be wondering what the difference is? Well, we’re hoping to set aside one from the other to help you decide which is right for your special day.

Intimate or Elopement Weddings

What is an Elopement?

In traditional terms, elopement refers to when a couple gets married in secret, usually by going away together somewhere private yet romantic.

Today, while some couples still choose to elope as just the two of them, others involve their family or a few friends to act as witnesses, but the ceremony tends to remain a swiftly planned and private affair.

Intimate or Elopement Weddings

What is an Intimate Wedding?

Simply put, an intimate wedding is a small wedding with fewer guests than a classic wedding.

Rather than inviting everyone you know from family and friends, to distant relatives and neighbours, if you have chosen an intimate wedding you can you choose your guest list with only your closest friends and family to join in the special occasion. Intimate weddings are usually for guest numbers between 10 and 30 guests.

Intimate or Elopement Weddings

The Differences between Eloping and choosing an Intimate Wedding

There’s no denying that eloping and intimate weddings do share similarities, however, there are some notable differences that may help you decide which style of celebration best suits you and your loved one.

Intimate or Elopement Weddings


For many couples, one of the most appealing aspects of an elopement is that the focus is purely on you, the happy couple. Having a ceremony and day that solely revolves around you means you can tailor your special day to your dreams and wishes, with no other guests to cater to.

Intimate weddings do tend to be slightly larger but still with only a select few guests joining you, you’ll have a lot less to consider than you would for a bigger wedding, meaning you can be far more specific when it comes to choosing a venue, accommodation and catering that is right for you.

Intimate or Elopement Weddings


For the most part, elopements can take place in a number of different locations, whether that’s in the midst of the countryside or at the top of a towering urban skyscraper. Choosing somewhere that is special to you is always a nice touch, or even somewhere that neither of you has ever been to before but that you can explore together as newlyweds.

If you’ve chosen to have an intimate wedding, when considering your venue you will have to factor in a few more details such as seating and catering for a small group of people. Finding a venue that specialises in small intimate weddings will ensure you aren’t lost in a big venue built for bigger weddings with hundreds of guests.

Intimate or Elopement Weddings


Perhaps the biggest difference between elopements and intimate weddings is the cost of these celebrations. With just you and your witnesses, eloping tends to be less expensive, and couples can often save money by being more flexible and choosing a date or time during quieter periods.

Alternatively, if you’ve asked guests to join you for your intimate wedding celebrations, you may need to give a little more thought to a date that will suit everyone as well as factoring in the cost for any must-have aspects you’d like for your big day such as photography, food, and flowers.

At Tree Top Escape, we specialise in providing a personal service to ensure you can do your wedding your way, whether that’s a romantic elopement filled with cherished moments or an intimate wedding shared with those special people in your life that mean the world to you. There are so many options we can offer to suit you, and we make it easy to plan with our recommended supplier list and wedding coordinators to support you throughout and make sure your wedding day runs smoothly.

For more information about our small wedding venue or to start discussions with one of our friendly team about your special day, please get in touch by giving us a call on 01769 629069 – we’d love to help!
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