A Photographer’s Guide on How to Elope in Memphis TN in 2024!

first look just before intimate elopement in tn

Elopements and intimate weddings usually come with less stress, expectations, and pressure that can come with big weddings. But, choosing the place to elope can be quite stressful. There are several beautiful places to select and one of them is Memphis, TN! Ready to elope in Memphis TN?

“Yes! How do we make it legal?”

You have planned to elope in Memphis TN with the love of your life, but what are the legal logistics? I have some helpful steps to help guide you! First, pick a day and call Shelby County Courthouse downtown at 140 Adams Avenue to book the date if you’re planning on a good ole’ fashioned courthouse elopement. **Please be advised that at the time of this publication, you can still get married at the courthouse, but judges aren’t really performing ceremonies at the moment**

Before you can have any kind of ceremony performed, you will need to purchase your license to elope in Memphis. You can do this anywhere in the state of Tennessee, but here is the official site for Shelby County. If you’re feeling really efficient, you can fill out the application ahead of time online. Once you’ve got your license, you just need the fee for your minister! Once your minister has reviewed your marriage license, you’re ready! For your elopement planning ease, the requirements for the license are here:

  • Both the parties must be at least 18 years old. 
  • Same-sex marriages are allowed. 
  • You will both need a valid I.D or birth certificate.

Your marriage license will be valid immediately and for 30 days, but MUST be returned to the county clerk within 30 days of being signed. The average cost of a TN marriage license is $100. Also, you do not need witnesses to sign your marriage license and a legally ordained officiant will be enough.

Where to Elope in Memphis

Spring in Tennessee is full of blooming wildflowers, lush greenery and temperature ranges from 50-70 degrees. But March and May are often full of rain and storms. Summers can be a bit brutal (and by a bit, I mean that as I type this it’s 100F and an ocean of humidity), but can be a wonderful time for an outdoor elopement, especially if you love the Mississippi River. Fall can be a perfect time to elope in Memphis TN, especially in October and early November. One of my favorite ceremonies to date, is Neely and Ryan‘s surprise wedding on the River. For more gorgeous locations to elope in Memphis TN, check out this blog!

a riverfront ceremony in Memphis, TN
Memphis Elopement shot by Wandering Creative

Eloping in Memphis TN!

Okay, now you’re the expert on how to elope in Memphis TN. But, your elopement won’t be complete without having someone who captures your moments! This is where you need me! I am an elopement and travel photographer, and while I’m local to Memphis, I travel worldwide. It would be my honor to capture you running out of the courthouse or eloping with your closest friends! As a candid photographer, real-life moments are everything. You can check my work out at https://awanderingcreative.com/.

Additionally, having a wedding planner who specializes in elopements will make your life so much easier. Check out my top Memphis wedding planners that I love to work with!

Can’t wait to hear from you!

Elopement portraits at the Memphis Botanic Garden, shot by Wandering Creative

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