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Ever wanted to get married in another country?

Ever wanted to get married in another country?


Tell us a bit about yourselves?

We are Monique and Dylan, two twenty-something-year-old Aussies, who realised that there’s more to life than working 9-5. So we quit our jobs and gave away everything we own to embark on our endless worldwide honeymoon as the Honeymoon Backpackers! We’ve been gallivanting the globe since May 2016 and have no plans to return anytime soon. We've witnessed the northern lights in Canada, surfed with dolphins in Australia, swam with whale sharks in the Philippines, bathed with elephants in Thailand, sand boarded down a volcano in Nicaragua, bungee jumped 147m in Costa Rica, conquered the world’s highest tandem skydive in America, scuba-dived with turtles in The Caribbean, snowboarded Canada’s Rocky Mountains, frolicked among the bio-luminescent plankton in Cambodia, swam in Mexican Cenotes and found the Moken Sea Gypsies in Myanmar! 

How did you two meet?

We met in high school back in Australia on the Central Coast. After dating for 6 months Monique was offered a job at Disney World Orlando, working as a lifeguard. Dylan couldn't fathom leaving her, so he put his electrical apprenticeship on hold, to follow her halfway across the world.

They couldn't live together as Disneyworld imposed strict rules on their employees, forcing him to Couchsurf & stay with friends, just to be close to her. After 2 months they had enough, she quit her job & they went travelling through Central America.

Over the next 6 months they backpacked Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua & Costa Rica before returning to the US. They spent the next month hitchhiking California & up the West Coast to Canada. After working & living in Canada for 2 months, they got itchy feet & spent the next two months backpacking through the Rocky Mountains & British Columbia.

After a year abroad they returned home to Australia & not long after got engaged. Dylan worked full time as an electrician whilst completing his apprenticeship, then went on to finish his electrical engineering diploma. Monique finished her bachelor of business & economics, whilst working in promotions & marketing, as well as completing her internship in radio commercial production.

They put their heads down & saved their asses off, for their wedding & travels. You can do anything if you put your mind to it & that's what they did. It was hard work & they made many sacrifices along the way. Both weren't ready to do 'society's life' & work full time post studying. So they turned down their promotions, quit their jobs & gave away everything that didn't fit into their backpack, to travel the world endlessly on their honeymoon.

Where did you get engaged?

We got engaged in the Hunter Valley wine region of NSW Australia. It was our second year anniversary so we went away for a week to celebrate. Dylan surprised me with a sunrise hot air balloon ride over the picturesque hunter valley. We could see the sun peep over the valley and kangaroos hopping around the vineyards. We celebrated our second year together way up in the clouds, sipping on champagne. After our champagne breakfast, we went on a half day wine tour around the Hunter Valley. We sampled local wine, organic cheeses, antipastos and distilled liquor.

Our accommodation was way out from town in the middle of the country; there was no reception and no one around but laughing kookaburras, rainbow lorikeets, cuddly koalas and pesky kangaroos. We walk into this modern but charming homestead, with music playing, candles lit, a hot bubble bath, rose petals everywhere, more champagne and a delectable cheese platter. Dylan suddenly popped down on one knee and asked me to marry him. It was one of the happiest moments of my life.

When and where did you get married? 

We got married in May on the breathtaking island of Boracay in the Philippines. We had a barefoot beach wedding at sunset on Boracay’s famous White Beach. 65 friends and family members from across the globe, came to our destination wedding. We had free flowing drinks throughout the evening and a buffet seafood dinner.


What was it like to get married in another country? 

Having our dream wedding in Australia wasn’t a realistic option for us. Our combined family is huge and we had quite a small wedding budget. This enabled us to have a beautiful barefoot wedding on the beach and we were able to invite everyone. Of course, not everyone was able to make it. This was one downfall, as our grandparents missed out on their first grandchildren getting married. However, we have a lovely wedding video that depicts our special day perfectly for those who missed out.

The friends and family who made the effort to come to the Philippines had an incredible time. It’s not often that you can holiday with your best friends and family members in another country. We were also exceptionally lucky to have such talented friends who rallied together to do the music, videography, photography, nuptials and MC.

Before booking our wedding we flew to the Philippines for a holiday. We watched a wedding at the same resort and got  a feel of what it would be like for us. The package came with everything included, so it wasn’t as stressful planning the wedding. We couldn’t have imagined a more perfect day! Getting married at sunset, barefoot, on Boracay’s famous White Beach was unforgettable.

Growing up we never thought of having a destination wedding. It wasn’t until we travelled the world and attended our friends wedding in Costa Rica, that we fell in love with the idea. Our Boracay barefoot beach wedding was more incredible than we could have ever imagined. The 19th of May 2016 was just the beginning of a lifetime of happiness together.

Wedding planning details:

Our wedding was so us, nothing was outsourced at all. Monique hand dyed the bridesmaid and flower girl dresses, she also made the bouquets, our good mate Darcy married us, our other friend Jaxson took our wedding pictures, Julian filmed our wedding video, Marvin sang at the wedding, My brother William was the M.C and our friend Anne-Marie Choreographed the wedding dance. 

First dance: Safia- You are the one (cover by Bryce Hutchings)

Reception entrance song: You’ve got the love- Florence and the Machine

Walked down the aisle to: The XX- Angels

Theme: Rustic Beach Barefoot Wedding

Colour scheme: Pastel blue and beige

Wedding Budget: $10,000 AUD

Wedding Venue: The Sea Wind Resort- Boracay Philippines

Wedding party: 12 including bride and groom

Wedding Singer: Ragga Marv- Local Boracay Musician

Videographer: That’s Rich Media

Wedding Photographer: JXSN FILMS-

Wedding Choreographer: Your First Dance Co-

How did you decide on having an endless honeymoon following the wedding? 

After spending 1 year travelling together through America, Central America & Canada in 2013, we caught the travel bug hard. So once we came home we decided to put our heads down, finish our studies & save our money to travel again. Not long after arriving home we got engaged & decided to have a destination wedding. We’re not the type of people who want an elaborate 2 week honeymoon, especially when we can spend the same amount of money backpacking long term instead.

We tossed up the idea of having an endless honeymoon & not coming home. We were already stressed enough with work & planning our wedding. So when we were offered these promotions, we had to work out whether this was the life we wanted to live, or leave…

We just finished 4 years of studying straight after high school, so did we want to jump into a career right after getting married? Everyone was so excited for us because our lives were ‘on track’, “you’re getting married & soon you’ll be buying a house, then you’ll be having kids”. It scared the absolute shit out of us…

We’re 22 & 23 & could see the rest of our lives paved out already. We're not normal & I'm glad we're not. Normal is getting dressed in clothes that you buy for work & driving through traffic in a car that you are still paying for- In order to get to the job that you need, to pay for the clothes and the car, & the house you leave vacant all day so you can go to work and try to make the money for the house your hardly in. We just don't get it & don’t want to spend our days apart from each other in order to own materialistic possessions together.

This was the one time in our lives that we had absolutely nothing holding us back. It’s not easy to just pick up & leave overseas when you have a house or kids. So we quit our jobs, turned down our promotions & gave away everything that didn’t fit into our backpacks, to travel the world indefinitely on our endless honeymoon!

Where are some of the best places you've been on your honeymoon?

Our biggest highlight was obviously getting married, barefoot on the beach in Boracay as the sunset over the horizon, in front of 65 of our closest friends & family.

But, it’s also hard to beat skinny-dipping with bioluminescent plankton & exploring the largest religious monument in the world in Cambodia. In Canada we witnessed the northern lights & snowboarded the Rocky Mountains. We swam with whale sharks in the Philippines & bathed with elephants in Thailand. In Costa Rica we surfed with crocodiles & bungee jumped 147m. We sand boarded down a volcano in Nicaragua & scuba dived with turtles in the Caribbean. We found the Moken Sea Gypsies & became the first foreigners to explore remote villages in the south of Myanmar. In Vietnam we rode our motorbike from the north to the south & abseiled down a 65m waterfall. We visited ancient Mayan ruins, discovered secret cenotes and relaxed on the beach in Mexico. In California we put our fear of heights to the test by conquering the highest tandem skydive in the world. We fell in love with Oahu’s north shore and the Hawaiian way of life. Our honeymoon continued in Australia with an epic east coast road trip!  

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