Getting married in France with Kiss & Toast
Bonjour, love birds !
The magic of a wedding is not just about the day itself, but also about the unique journey you take to reach it. There is a certain “je ne sais quoi” about destination weddings, particularly those in France, that offer an experience that is simply unique.
Let us tell you a little bit more about planning a wedding in France and how our team at Kiss & Toast can bring your French destination wedding dreams to life, offering reassurance, love, and expertise every step of the way.
The Wedding Collections have been created to deliver a comprehensive project plan, paired with the experience of a dedicated wedding planner. Yet, there are a few things to know before planning a wedding in France and we hope you will find here all the information you need to make an informed decision. For any additional question you might have, our team is here for you.
We will also tell you more about how we select the venues that host our collections and the strategic partnership with Manon, your dedicated travel planner. To ensure a seamless experience, she will handle all logistics beyond the wedding ceremony itself.
Saying "Oui" to a French Wedding with Kiss & Toast
Things to Know Before Planning a French Wedding.
France, with its enchanting landscapes and timeless romantic charm, provides an idyllic setting for your wedding. However, saying “oui” in this beautiful country does require navigating through certain legal requirements that even us, french citizens, have to abide by.
A fundamental principle in French law is the separation of church and state, a concept known as laïcité. This principles means that the civil wedding is the only one to be legally recognised and that any religious ceremony must be preceded by a civil ceremony. The civil ceremony takes place at the local Mairie (town hall), and only then can a religious ceremony occur. Without evidence of a legal wedding, the religious ceremony cannot take place.
Another interesting point is that French residents are only permitted to get married in the town hall of the city where they reside in. So, to get married in France, you need to become a resident and at least one party must reside in France for a minimum of 40 continuous days immediately preceding the wedding in the town where you have chosen to host the civil wedding. This residency has to be in the town where the marriage is to take place. In some special instances, exceptions have been made for those with property or family with property in France, but this is entirely at the local Mairie’s discretion and is not a guaranteed option.
Given these stipulations, many international couples choose to conduct the legal part of their marriage in their home country. They then host the symbolic ceremony, which holds emotional and personal significance, in France. For many, the “real” wedding is this symbolic one, when they celebrate their engagement with all the people they love surrounded by the captivating beauty of France !
A Religious Ceremony in France
What about the dream of a picturesque French church wedding, you might wonder ? This is absolutely possible and adds a traditional touch to your ceremony. However, as stated earlier, the religious ceremony has to follow the civil marriage. Whether you are looking for a Catholic church, or wish to bring your own priest for an English-speaking ceremony, we at Kiss & Toast are prepared to guide you through this process to the best of our capacity. Some parishes are more welcoming than others, offering the perfect setting for your ceremony, and will be happy to welcome you to celebrate your catholic wedding.
Catholic ceremonies are the most common in Frnce but ceremonies reflecting other religious customs are absolutely possible as well. Protestant, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu – regardless of your religious or spiritual beliefs, we at Kiss & Toast can help guide you through the process. Always remember that these religious ceremonies will all have to be held after the civil union.
Symbolic ceremonies, with their flexibility and potential for personalisation, are quite popular amongst international couples. They can take place anywhere, from a historic château to a vineyard. The freedom given by symbolic ceremonies in terms of setting, script and decor, allows to create quite a unique experience.
Navigating through French wedding laws and customs might seem a little bit complicated but the Kiss & Toast team is by your side to make sure the journey towards your big day is as smooth as it is memorable. We manage the logistics so you can focus on what is important: your love, your loved ones and experiencing the romance and charm of a French wedding.
Wedding Planning and Guest Management
When it comes to the logistical aspects of a destination wedding, the list of tasks can seem endless – finding the perfect venue, managing vendors from abroad, coordinating travel and accommodations, and arranging local transportation. This can all feel overwhelming, but there is no need to worry with KISS & TOAST as your trusted companion in this journey.
Our team of wedding professionals knows how to navigate the complex landscape of destination weddings. At KISS & TOAST, we focus on the planning aspects, allowing you to concentrate on what’s most important to you. Our goal is to ensure that you can relax and enjoy the journey to your big day without having to figure out the details and logistics.
We are fortunate to work hand-in-hand with Manon, our dedicated travel planner who manages all travel-related logistics with precision and care, ensuring that no detail is overlooked. Together, KISS & TOAST and DESTINASLOW will ease your planning process.
Our collective goal is to ensure that all you need to worry about is saying “oui!” KISS & TOAST is here so you can enjoy planning your dream wedding in France. We handle the logistics, so you can focus on beginning this exciting new chapter of your life.
DESTINASLOW is here for guest management, making sure they are well cared for. They have travelled a long way to celebrate your love and we want to make sure their stay in France is a memorable one.
Adding a French Touch to Your Celebration
A French wedding is a unique blend of timeless elegance and delightful traditions. If you are looking to infuse these authentic French elements into your wedding, you have come to the right place. At KISS & TOAST, we love create weddings that as a perfect blend of your cultures, traditions and personalities, while adding a French touch to your special day.
A French wedding is not complete without a dash of local traditions and customs: a croquembouche wedding cake, the traditional French “vin d’honneur” cocktail hour, the elegant “arts de la table” – setting your table in the classic French style – the dragée guest favours… can all bring a touch of French elegance and savoir-vivre to your wedding. KISS & TOAST is here to guide you in incorporating these elements into your wedding, adding that authentic French charm and flair.
Navigating the Joie de Vivre of French Celebrations
A key part of the French wedding experience is understanding and embracing the typical French wedding schedule. Unlike weddings in the US and the UK, French weddings often start later in the day and continue well into the night. Here is an example of a traditional French wedding timeline:
- Ceremony: 5:00 – 5:30 PM
- Reception Drinks: 6:00 – 8:00 PM
- Meal: 8:30 – 11:30 PM
- First Dance and Party: 11:30 PM onwards
Wedding parties in France often carry on until the early hours of the morning, promising an unforgettable experience for you and your guests. However, we understand that you might prefer to stick to your traditional timeline, and we are more than happy to accommodate these preferences. Since we are talking schedule, note that most French venues require the dance and music to be moved indoors after 10 PM for legal reasons.
The beauty of a destination wedding lies in the fusion of cultures, and at KISS & TOAST, we are dedicated to ensuring that this blend is truly meaningful for our clients. Our ultimate goal is to create a wedding that aligns with your vision and is a unique reflection of your personalities. We love it when you fully immerse yourself in the joyous celebration and experience the charm and romance of a French wedding.
Venue Selection Process with Kiss & Toast
Choosing the perfect venue for your wedding is an important decision that sets the stage for your special day. At KISS & TOAST, we ensure that the venue selection process is as seamless as possible, taking into consideration key factors such as the size of your wedding party, your personal style, and your budget. Whether you envision a grand reception in a château or a sophisticated ceremony in a beautiful French vineyard, we are here to guide you in the venue selection.
If you have a venue in mind, or booked you venue already, our team will happily reach out to see how we can collaborate and integrate your chosen wedding collection.
In the case you are still looking for the perfect venue, we can assist with the venue selection and share our expertise to help you find a venue that matches your vision.
As our aim is to offer you a memorable experience in France, Kiss & Toast has created carefully curated partnership with French venues. Every venue has been reviewed taking into consideration a number of factors such as the suitability of rooms, the possible layout with wedding setups in mind, the facilities like the catering kitchens and electricity provisions in order to adapt and integrate our collections to ensure everything is perfectly in place for your wedding day. Additionally, we only choose venues where the owners provide excellent support and warmly welcome our clients into their establishments to make sure you enjoy the warmth of French hospitality and a charming immersive experience.
Your wedding in France with Kiss & Toast
Planning a wedding in France offers an enchanting blend of romance, elegance, and delightful traditions. However, the journey towards that dream can seem filled with logistical hurdles and planning stress. That is where Kiss & Toast steps in. We are your trusted companion in this journey, with a focus on managing all the logistical aspects and infusing your wedding with a “petite” French touch.
Our expertise lies in years of experience managing the complexity of destination weddings, from finding the perfect venue to coordinating the wedding team on the day. As we understand guest management is also a big part of the destination wedding experience, Destinaslow can assist in handling travel and accommodations.
At Kiss & Toast, we take pride in crafting weddings that are a perfect blend of French elegance and authenticity to reflect your personal style. The interaction of cultures and tradition is what turns a destination wedding into a unique experience and we ensure this blend is meaningful for our clients. We help you incorporate elements of French culture into your wedding and guide you through the traditions and customs of a traditional French wedding all while accommodating your preferences.
All you need to worry about is saying “oui!” We take care of the backstage, logistics and details while you focus on your joyous celebration with all the people you love and experience the charms of a French wedding.