How to get married in Vancouver – Finding a Marriage Commissioner

So you are ready to tie the knot in Vancouver, but you need to find someone to conduct your ceremony.  In Canada you can have either a civil marriage conducted by a licensed Marriage Commissioner or you can have a religious wedding.  We had a civil wedding, so I will provide some insight on that first.

The best way to find someone is by word of mouth.  Our commissioner was Ann Moore, and I couldn’t think of a more caring individual.  Steven was very nervous due to language issues, and she helped us through the ceremony.   You can browse the entire list of marriage commissioners if Ann is unavailable.

Once you have contacted the commissioner you should ask about the following information:

  • Dates and availability
  • Fees
  • Location
  • Number of guests
  • Clothing
  • The ceremony (sample ceremony)

We had a very simple ceremony with only two friends attending (the minimum required) in a small house wearing casual attire.

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37 responses to “How to get married in Vancouver – Finding a Marriage Commissioner

  1. Carmelita Dietruch

    Hi,

    My fiancé and I would like to get married in Vancouver on Dec. 27th and we are checking on your availability then. I know it’s short notice but we are hoping someone would be able to help, or recommend someone who will be able to help?

    Thanks much.

    Carmelita Dietrich

  2. If you are getting married by the marriage commissioner I mentioned, she has a list of B&Bs that are available.  There are so many hotels in Vancouver though.  Bring your laptop and stay one place for a day and move on to something nicer once you are in the city.

    I don\’t know your price range, but I tend to lean towards 4-5 star accommodations.

  3. ok, my fiance and me want to get married, we live in vancouver, we dont need a big ceremony just the papers were to sign. we want to doit next week, some body know were i need to go and how much is this cost? thanks so much/

  4. carolina

    hi Im mexican and my fiance is canadian , we want to get married in vegas in new year , I want to know if las vegas marriage is legal in canada ?

  5. The cost of the wedding is around 300 CDN. $100 for the license, $100 for the ceremony, and a $50+ tip for the marriage commissioner. Your ceremony can occur almost anywhere, even on a beach (weather permitting).

  6. Hi Carolina,

    (Please note that I am not a lawyer.)

    If you will have a same-sex wedding, I suggest you have it in Canada. Under all other cases the US has a treaty with Canada and Canada will recognize your relationship status regardless of the US state where you were married.

  7. We will be sailing with Royal Caribbean on June 7tha from Vancouver and wish to get married on the ship. Could you please supply me with information we will need to obtain a marriage license?

  8. Allison Gallant

    Wondering if you could direct me on where to get a list of marriage commissioners in the Vancouver/Surrey area. We want something really small around six people!
    Thanx

  9. Carla Ferguson

    Hi, I am looking for a list of marriage commissioners in the vancouver westend. We want to get married on 3rd beach at sunset. Just us and witnesses. Thanks Carla

  10. For the two people posting concerning Marriage Commissioners, I can only speak for Ann, our marriage commissioner. She was wonderful and caring, however you can visit this web site: http://www.vs.gov.bc.ca/cgi-bin/vs_search_internet.cgi?VSS_TABLE=TDatMrgCom.txt to find someone else.

    Good luck and congratulations on your wedding!

  11. How easy is it for a British couple to get married in Vancouver when they are only over on holiday?

  12. Hey Tom, here is my advice:

    1) Find a commissioner before you arrive.
    2) Plan on reserving at least two work days (M-F) for filling out the forms, etc.

    Everything else is really simple. Good luck!

  13. Hi, James! Thank you for your wonderful tips about how to get married in Vancouver.

    I am a Canadian citizen living in Taiwan and planning to get married in Vancouver with my Taiwanese girlfriend at the end of this year.

    Here are my questions:
    1) Is your commossioner “Ann” still working today?
    2) Is the whole process of getting married in Vancouver easy? Can it be done less than a week?
    3) Do we need to register our marriage in Taiwan after we come back?
    4) Any advice you would like to give me?

    It’s hard to get this info. from Taiwan; thank you for your support.

    Johnny

  14. Hello I am want to get married in Vancouver, Canada this year. I am a US citizen and I currently reside in California. My boyfriend was born in Mexico and lives there too. We are planning to take a trip to Vancouver this winter to get married. Can I get married? What would I need? Also, since he can’t come leagally to the US would the marriage licence be valid in the US so that I can proccess his immigration papers? in other words, would the US validate our marriage?

    Thank you.

  15. Hi! Im planning to go to Vancouver and get married to my fiance, but we have no friends in town. How do we go about getting witnesses?

  16. hi im maria and under ministry of employment and income assistance and met this guy who proposed marriage. I decided to say yes because my mother who share with me for rent is moving to by herself. ive known this man for 2 year been writing and communicate and phoning each other. please give me an advise. thank you

    (Note edited to remove personal details)

    • Hi Maria,

      I am no lawyer, but I believe you may run into some problems if your husband is unable to support you financially. I do need to comment that jumping into marriage seems a bit premature as well. I always have lived with my partner first for a few years – this gives you a chance to see if things really work out first, however I understand in your situation this may be difficult.

  17. Michelle

    Hi there James,

    Thanks for answering all these questions, it has provided a service to those of us –even in Vancouver! Yes, Ann is still here and a commissioner- she’s listed on the site.

    Carlos- Short of bringing friends/family, grab some friendly folks from the local pub and offer them a beer! I’m sure they’ll be happy to oblige!

  18. Ann Moore

    Hello James,

    This is your commissioner Ann Moore and someone mentioned they heard of me through this site and I want to say ‘thank you’ to you!

    I am indeed still performing weddings – now over 3,000 of them and I perform about one third of them in my home where couples bring a bottle of champagne, I use my crystal glasses and they stay and have a mini celebration following the ceremony! I can also provide the 2 witnesses for a couple if they do not have friends or family here.

    So, this is just to say ‘hello’ and ‘thank you’ to you and I wish you a beautiful day!

    Warm regards, Ann

    • Hi Ann,

      This definitely is the most popular part of my website with a few hundred hits to this topic every month. I really hope I am providing a good account of what you need to do to tie the knot.

  19. Allan Clark

    James , do you recall how much the commissioner was. My partner and myself want to marry in january or febrauary and would like to know all the costs prior to it all.

    • Hi Allan, you really should contact a commissioner. I believe it is 100 – 150 plus a tip, but the base rate determined by the government may have changed.

  20. Ann Moore

    Hello Allan,

    May I answer your question? The fee is based on where the wedding takes place i.e. my home or at a different venue. You may reach me at 1-604-731-1116 or by e-mail and I would be happy to look after you. I am free and flexible in Jan but will be away most of Feb.

    Warm regards, Ann

  21. WOW – This site is way kewl THX for making this , it’s pretty much dealt with every question one could ask them selves !!!!
    Ann i will be trying to reach you within the next few days .
    Thx JAmes
    Happy New Year to ALL !!!!
    & May The Love Live For EVER !!!!

  22. hi james. i was just wondering what would the regulations be for my fiance and i. we live in saskatchewan and would like to get married in vancouver this summer. would we have to get someone from saskatchewan?

  23. Albert Patterson

    Ann Moore, My partner and I are insteresting in getting Married in Vancouver on July 11, 2010 (his 50th birthdaye, which is a Sunday). We would like to have the ceremony held at the Metropolitan Community Church – Vancouver (on Sunday), we are members of the MCC San Francisco.

    1st question: Is Canada marriages recognized in California?
    2nd question: Since we want to be married in Canada can someone take care of what is needed for the wedding and we sign where required when we get there?
    3rd question: Will you please give me the necessary fees.

  24. I will not approve this comment, you shouldnt post your home information here.

  25. Ann Moore

    Dear Phuong,

    This e-mail was passed to me and I would like to say that you may come to Vancouver for your wedding and I would be delighted to perform your marriage ceremony!

    I will need the following information from you: your last name, your partner’s name, the date and time of your wedding and where you would like to get married (I also perform weddings in my home).

    Once I hear back from you Phuong, I can go into more details with you.

    Kind regards, Ann 604-731-1116

  26. Ann Moore

    Dear Albert,

    Thank you for your e-mail and although I am free July 11th and I would be absolutely delighted to perform your wedding, I believe the church you mention is in the US state of Vancouver, Washington, NOT Vancouver, B.C. I see no reference to any church of that name here in Vanc.

    Same sex wedding in Canada are not recognized in the US but I perform hundreds of wedding for gay couples who come here regardless, who want a legal ceremony, even though it is not recognized in their country.

    First, before we move ahead with this, please confirm the Church address and if it is not in Vancouver BC, do you still wish to come here anyway? I perform weddings in my home, in case you need a venue but I can send all this info to you in another e-mail once I know you would still like to come here.

    I will look forward to hearing back from you Albert and my number, should you care to call, is 604-731-1116

    Kind regards, Ann

  27. Ann Moore

    Hello Alex,

    Thank you for your comments and please give me a call when you need information or when you would like to book a date or time for your wedding in Vancouver

    My number is 604-731-1116

    Kind regards, Ann

  28. Hi Anne and James,

    I am very pleased to have found this site with so much useful information. Myself and my partner would like to get married either next year or the following in our Easter holidays. We would like a legal civil ceremony as we are in a same-sex relationship. As same-sex marriages are legal in England, I presume if we get married in Canada, it will be legally binding in the UK too?

    Ideally we wish to be married outside, somewhere picturesque, such as on a mountain with snow and trees around us, stay in a log cabin for a few nights and be able to ski for a week too. Is this asking alot, or is this achievable do you think?

    Anne, if you could email me any information which would be able to help us plan our wedding that would be great – availability for yourself and costings etc. James, if you could give us any information too which would help, then we would be very grateful for your time.

    We intend on bringing our parents and children along to share our celebrations too!

    Look forward to hearing from you,

    Angela

  29. hello need some help
    I live in Mexico am canadian and want to marry my partner who is mexican. I planned the date to get married in vancouver, b.c. had family invited , time date and everything in place for April..we applied for his visa which we thought would be no problem but he was rejected to come to canada..we were both very disappointed and now dont know if we should try applying again, they said that he would not come back to mexico,,we had return tickets , he attends chiropractic school and had a letter from them and still was denied , i also showed that i had income and papers to live in mexico and own a home here..we planned on returning and live in mexico,,can anyone help , suggestion..we also thought of getting married in mexico city but one of the things to get married there is that he has to be a resident, we both live in the yucatan..help

  30. Malae Ete

    Hello Ann, my girlfriend and I would to get marry in Canada sometimes this month.We are both U.S citizen,will please let me know what we need to bring to Canada,documents and how much money we need to pay,also how many days do we need to spend there before we can actually get marry.please let me know so we can plan our trip to Canada,thank you,Malae Ete

  31. I am canadian , and I want to married with a mexican woman, she is in Vancouver as a visitor right now, what do we need to do to get married?

  32. just wondering if any one knows how to get ahold of anne the james has mentioned as me and my fiance are not worried of a wedding as its more impotent to be married as we have childrena and are very much in love any suggestions

  33. hi there jsut wondering if anyone knows how to get ahold of the commisoner james spoke of i see she does this in her home and i honelsty do not wont a wedding i jsut want to get married we are very much in love and have children and just need to get married

  34. if anyone had her email that would be grea im looking for an estimate for in her home