Registry office ceremonies
You can get married or have a civil union in a registry office. You don't need to arrange your own celebrant.
Registry office wedding and civil union ceremonies:
- are only held during normal office hours — usually Monday to Friday, 9am–4pm
- take about 10 minutes and use standard vows — you can’t customise the ceremony.
Book your ceremony
When you apply for a licence, you have to visit a registry office to sign a declaration. While you're there, staff at the registry office will book your ceremony.
You need to apply for your marriage licence at least 3 days before you want to get married.
It costs $240 to get married or have a civil union at a registry office, including the cost of the licence.
You have to use these vows:
How many guests you can invite to the ceremony depends on the office you're getting married in — you need to bring at least 2 witnesses.
Find a registry office
Most registry offices in New Zealand are in the same building as the local court or council.