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September 27, 2022 2 min read

Tiny Details for Your Big Day: Holding Your Ceremony on a Boat


If you and your spouse-to-be live for the water, why not include your aquatic passions in your wedding plans? A sea-based affair offers unparalleled romance.


However, you do need to consider several unique details when planning. Here's what you should know about holding your ceremony on a boat.

1. Choose Your Dock

Unless you plan to say "I do" aboard a cruise ship, it's best to stick close to shore. Bigger boats can handle rough water, but smaller vessels could send you on an unplanned ride, ruining your dress. Besides, you'll have to plan for inclement weather – your guests won't want to wait in the pouring rain while you dock.


You should ensure you have a supply of fenders, ropes, and lines so your boat stays securely moored to the dock. It's also wise to have a plank with railings to assist guests with mobility issues in climbing aboard for the ceremony.

2. Ready Your Ride

You want your vessel to look her best on your big day. Getting some new upholstery or seat covers to disguise salt and debris stains doesn't take too much. Snap-in carpeting protects your ship's planking while making it safer to walk in slick shoes.


Do you want to go more high-tech? A set of underwater running lights will make your boat steal the marina show. The right audio system can take the place of a DJ during smaller, more intimate affairs.

3. Alert Your Guests

You should include details about your venue in the invitations, including whether you plan to hold the entire ceremony and reception onboard or have a combination seashore-vessel affair. Some of your guests may suffer seasickness even when you remain docked – the smell of exhaust fumes from surrounding vessels can exacerbate the problem. They need to know to take medication beforehand.


Furthermore, everyone aboard the ship must wear a properly fitting lifejacket. Many states have laws requiring those of certain ages to wear them, so have plenty in child sizes. However, all guests should don one for safety.

4. Safety First

You need a contingency plan if you arrange a boat ceremony. People in or near water run a higher risk of lightning strikes, so you'll need a place to move indoors if the skies decide to open and pour.


Furthermore, children require extra supervision near water. Please don't put the entire burden on parents. It's wise to hire additional sitters – even a trained lifeguard or two – to boost your peace of mind.

Holding Your Ceremony on a Boat

Why not include your love of the water in your big day? Getting married on a boat can be the pinnacle of romance. However, you have to plan your event with the venue in mind. Follow these tips when holding your ceremony on a boat.