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Getting married in Hawaii is a dream for many couples looking for a beautiful and stress-free wedding. If you’re short on time or trying to save money, getting married at a Hawaii courthouse provides a fast and affordable option.

This comprehensive guide will walk you through everything you need to know to get legally married at a courthouse in Hawaii, from marriage license requirements to details on the ceremony process.

Hawaii Marriage License Requirements

Residency Rules

There are no residency requirements to get married in Hawaii. Both residents and non-residents can apply for a marriage license and have a legal wedding ceremony in Hawaii. This tropical destination is a popular wedding locale for couples from all over the world!

ID and Age Requirements

Both partners must be 18 years of age or older to marry without parental consent. Under 18 is possible with notarized parental consent. Valid photo ID is required as proof of identity and age when applying for the license.

Minimum Age 18 without consent, 16 with parental consent
ID Needed Valid government-issued photo ID for both partners (driver’s license, passport, etc.)

License Fees

It costs $60 to get a marriage license in Hawaii. This covers application fees and one certified copy of the license. Additional copies are $10 each. Payment must be made at the time of application by cash or credit/debit card.

Hawaii offers both public and private wedding ceremony options for couples with a valid marriage license. From lush botanical gardens to warm sandy beaches, Hawaii’s stunning backdrops make for dream weddings!

Hawaii Courthouse Wedding Locations

Oahu Courthouse Options

Oahu offers several courthouse options for getting married, including the historic Honolulu Courthouse near downtown Honolulu. This lovely Spanish-Moorish style building from the 1920s hosts civil wedding ceremonies on weekdays.

Couples can also get married at the Kapolei Courthouse in Kapolei or the Wahiawa District Courthouse on the North Shore. The Kapolei Courthouse has gorgeous ocean views and lush gardens for memorable wedding photos.

Maui Courthouse Options

For a Hawaii courthouse wedding on the Valley Isle, the main venue is the Wailuku Courthouse in central Maui. This courthouse hosts civil ceremonies in a simple indoor setting and has limited availability, so couples should book well in advance.

Those seeking a more picturesque backdrop can also inquire about getting married at one of Maui’s historic churches, like the stone Iao Congregational Church near Iao Valley State Park.

Kauai Courthouse

On the Garden Island, couples can get married at the Lihue Courthouse, located in the county seat. This courthouse offers basic civil wedding ceremonies by appointment on weekdays. While the indoor setting itself is no-frills, visitors love the panoramic views of the lush island and the ocean from the courthouse grounds.

Couples often take their wedding photos with the scenic backdrop of mountains and palm trees after the quick courthouse ceremony.

Big Island Courthouses

There are two courthouses on the Big Island that host civil wedding ceremonies:

  • Hilo Courthouse: Located on the lush and rainy east side of the island near Akaka Falls State Park. Indoor ceremonies only.
  • Kona Courthouse: Situated along the arid Kona coast area on the Big Island’s west side, very close to Kailua-Kona town. Has indoor and outdoor spaces for small wedding ceremonies with ocean views.

So couples on the Big Island have options on both sides of the island for tying the knot!

Booking a Hawaii Courthouse Wedding

Making a Booking

To book a courthouse wedding in Hawaii, you’ll first need to contact the Marriage License Office in the county where you want to get married. You can find contact information for each island’s office on the state’s Department of Health website (

Give them a call or send an email to check availability and reserve your preferred date and time slot.

Most counties require at least 10 days’ advance notice to book a courthouse wedding, so don’t wait until the last minute! Be prepared with your desired ceremony date and time, as well as documents like your marriage license application.

Required Documents

To legally get married in Hawaii, you’ll need to complete a marriage license application and have it approved first. Here are the basic requirements:

  • A valid ID like a driver’s license or passport
  • Your birth certificate to establish proof of age and legal names
  • If previously married, legal proof the marriage ended (divorce decree, annulment papers, or death certificate)
  • Any other supporting documents required by the county

You can start the marriage license process online through the DOH website prior to your trip. Just don’t sign the application until you’re in front of a notary on the islands. Once approved, the license is valid for 30 days.

Wedding Time Slots

Each county has different rules and hours for courthouse wedding ceremonies. For example, Kauai’s Marriage License Office operates by appointment only from 8:00 am – 4:00 pm on weekdays. Maui performs ceremonies every half hour from 8:30 am – 4:00 pm on weekdays. So be sure to ask about availability!

Most slots book up quickly, especially during busy tourist seasons like summer and holidays. The good news is courthouse weddings only take about 10-15 minutes from start to finish. You’ll exchange vows, sign the marriage certificate, and bam – you’ll be legally hitched in Hawaii!

The Day of Your Courthouse Wedding

Arrival Time and Process

Arrive at the courthouse 15-30 minutes before your scheduled ceremony to allow time for parking, walking inside, and checking in with the marriage license clerk. Make sure you know exactly which office or courtroom you need to go to.

The clerk will likely ask to see your marriage license and valid government-issued photo IDs before directing you where to wait for the judge or officiant. You may need to take a number and wait to be called if other weddings are scheduled at the same time.

The Ceremony

Hawaii courthouse wedding ceremonies are simple and brief, lasting generally 10-15 minutes. You will stand before the judge or officiant to exchange vows and rings. The officiant will guide you through the process and make sure proper vows and declarations are made to pronounce you legally married under Hawaii law.

No more than a few additional guests beyond the couple getting married are usually allowed to observe the courthouse wedding ceremony due to space limitations.

Photos and Witnesses

You are welcome to bring a photographer along to take pictures of your special moment. Photographs and video recording are allowed in some courthouse wedding venues but prohibited in certain courtrooms, so check the rules in advance.

A courthouse staff person or bystander can also be asked to snap a photo with your phone after the ceremony. Hawaii law requires at least two witnesses who are age 18 or older to be present at your wedding ceremony, in addition to the couple and officiant.

These important people will sign your marriage certificate to help make your marriage legal and official.

Making Your Courthouse Wedding Special

Small Decor Touches

Even though courthouse weddings are usually simple affairs, adding some small decorations can make your special day feel more personalized. For example, you could decorate the courthouse steps with a few flower petals, balloons, or ribbons.

Carrying a small bouquet or boutonniere can also add a nice touch. Just make sure any decor plans are approved by the courthouse ahead of time.

Pretty Dresses and Suits

There’s no need to spend a fortune on attire, but wearing something nice that makes you feel confident and happy is important. For brides – a pretty white sundress or skirt suits would be perfect. Grooms can keep it simple with a shirt, tie and slacks.

The most important thing is that your outfit reflects your style as a couple.

Celebrating Afterwards

Holding a small reception at a restaurant or having an intimate dinner party at home afterwards is a great way to celebrate with your nearest and dearest. Splurging on catering or decor isn’t essential – the point is spending quality time with loved ones and perhaps sharing wedding cake!

Making a toast and cutting a cake makes for some lovely photos too.


Getting married at a Hawaii courthouse provides a fast, affordable, and romantic way to make your wedding dreams come true without spending a fortune or dealing with months of stressful planning. By following the steps outlined here for obtaining your marriage license, booking a courthouse ceremony time and location, and personalizing your special day, you’re sure to have a beautiful and meaningful wedding you’ll cherish for a lifetime.

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