How to get married in Gibraltar

by | May 29, 2020 | Featured | 0 comments

Contract your marriage in Gibraltar and have your wedding in Spain!

To get married in Spain can be hugely frustrating, but a marriage in Gibraltar is simple – not just for UK nationals but many other nationalities too.
The Gibraltar Register Office requires documentation in English which you can easily email for them to check in advance.
Read more top tips for arranging your marriage in Gibraltar.
Getting married at Gibraltar register office

Photo Jack Hartley

Getting to Gibraltar

Gibraltar is a British Overseas Territory on a piece of rocky land that sticks out on the end of southern Spain. On one side of the airport is Spain and on the other side, Gibraltar – it is that easy!

Gibraltar has its own airport with flights to six main UK airports plus the Moroccan airports of Casablanca and Tangier.

As the main road from customs into town crosses the runway, the road is understandably closed at certain times of the day – so take this into consideration if you need to get to the register office for a particular time!

Top tip: check the Gibraltar live flight info before planning your trip. Not just regarding flights, but also for when the main road across the runway is closed to traffic and pedestrians walking into town.

Arriving in Gibraltar from Spain

You can fly into the international airport at Malaga then hire a car to follow the Mediterranean motorway for 90 minutes to the border with Gibraltar.

Alternatively, there are four buses a day to La Linea (the Spanish border with Gibraltar) costing about €14. You can then walk over the border and walk into town to the register office, take one of the many city buses, or a taxi for about €5.

Walk over the border from Spain into Gibraltar

Just walk across the runway from Spain into Gibraltar


What paperwork do we need to get married in Gibraltar?

The Civil Status Register Office conducts marriages and civil partnerships in Gibraltar.
Depending on your civil status the main paperwork you will need is an English translation of your:
  • Birth certificate
  • Proof of civil status
  • Passport
  • Proof of any change of name eg previous marriage certificate and divorce decree absolute
Before you get married in Gibraltar, the register office will ask you to send all of your documents in PDF format in one email so that they can check them.

Top tip: download a copy of the current Guidance Document for Marriages and Civil Partnerships in Gibraltar

When the Gibraltar register office confirms your documents are in order, you can pencil in a date for your marriage ceremony, complete the Registrar application form and send your payment. Simples!


Spain is very close to Gibraltar for getting married

Spain on one side of the airport, Gibraltar on the other


What happens at our marriage on Gibraltar?

  • Proof of stay
    If you are not a resident of Gibraltar, the law requires you to spend one night immediately before or after your marriage in Gibraltar and present proof to the registrar – see the Guidance notes for acceptable evidence such as a paid hotel bill.
  • Present original documents to the Gibraltar registrar
    All of your ORIGINAL documents must be presented to the Registrar by at least 10:30am on the day before your marriage ceremony. You cannot make an appointment, it is a first come/first served system.
  • Sign an affidavit
    You need to sign an affidavit saying that you are free to marry in front of one of the Commissioners for Oaths or Notaries Public on Gibraltar which you can do the day before, or on the day of your marriage ceremony.
  • Find two witnesses for your Gibraltar marriage
    If you don’t have guests of your own, you need to persuade two English speaking people to be present at your marriage and sign the register as witnesses (try asking the couple getting married before you).

Top tip: Arrive in Gibraltar two days before your marriage ceremony so that you have plenty of time to get in and see the Registrar, sign your affidavit and have proof of your stay. Win! Win! Win!


Does our Gibraltar register office marriage include a wedding ceremony?

Contracting your marriage in front of the Gibraltarian Registrar is the legal part of getting married.
If you want to celebrate with more ceremony, you have three options for a wedding.

  1. At the register office
    The Registrar allows up to 30 minutes when contracting your legal marriage which allows time for a ring exchange and to include non-religious readings and/or poems approved by the registrar as suitable for a civil ceremony.
  2. At an approved outside location
    The Registrar can conduct your marriage at one of a number of approved venues with a non-religious ceremony under registration guidelines.
    See the Guidance Document for Marriages and Civil Partnerships in Gibraltar
  3. At a Celebrant-led wedding ceremony wherever you like!

Having contracted your legal marriage, you can then have a symbolic wedding ceremony officiated by a professional Celebrant on Gibraltar, over the border in Spain or back in your own country.

Top tip: Have a two-centre wedding!
Get married in Gibraltar then celebrate with your perfect, Celebrant-led sunshine wedding ceremony in Spain with me!

This is me, Debbie Skyrme, Celebrant Spain, officiating a bilingual wedding ceremony on board the five star super-yacht The Sunborn, permanently moored in Gibraltar.

Debbie Skyrme is Celebrant Spain officiating weddings in Gibraltar and Spain

Debbie Skyrme officiating a wedding on board the Sunborn yacht, Gibraltar

Author: Debbie Skyrme is an award winning celebrant in Spain officiating bilingual weddings, elopements and vow renewals in the Spanish sunshine.

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