A Meaningful Alternative 




A Code of Practice for Marriage Celebrants has been established by the Attorney-General’s Department. The code covers a broad range of issues, such as standards of service, recognition of the significance of marriage, and compliance with the Marriage Act and other laws. Under the code, celebrants are required to provide you with the information and guidance you need to choose or compose a marriage ceremony that meets your needs and expectations

Traditional or Not 
Civil celebrants range from those who conduct traditional ceremonies to those who specialise in anything but!

A friend or family member may be able to recommend a celebrant for your ceremony. Or click here to access our online directory. Here we list many of Australia’s best wedding celebrants who will be more than happy to help with your arrangements. Many will travel outside their own area so even though they may not be located nearby, don’t let that stop you from contacting them.

Searching For a Celebrant 
It is important for you both to feel comfortable with the celebrant you choose to conduct your ceremony. When you have narrowed your search to two or three celebrants you feel might fit the bill, phone them. If you have a pleasant conversation and are happy with the information they give you, make an appointment to meet face to face.

This meeting should give you a very good idea as to whether you are both compatible with your prospective celebrant. You will quickly know if you feel comfortable in each other’s presence and if this person can fulfil your aspirations for your ceremony.

During the meeting, ask them how long they have been a celebrant, and what their priorities are when conducting a marriage ceremony. Also ask what certificate and other documents they provide. Celebrants set their own fees, which can vary quite significantly, so be sure you ask what they charge and what their fee includes.

Now That You Have Found Them 
A good celebrant will inspire you with helpful advice and suggestions. They will work with you to create a ceremony that reflects your individual personalities and your identity as a couple. It is also your celebrant’s responsibility to ensure that all the necessary legal documents are completed, signed and sent to the appropriate agencies, and that the legal requirements of the marriage ceremony are properly met.

When you have found the celebrant who is right for you, discuss with them details such as the kind of ceremony you want, the music, readings and symbols you would like to include, and your vows.

You may know exactly what you want, or you may not have the slightest idea. Either way, your celebrant is there to help you shape your dream wedding and to make it a reality, while still fulfiling all the legal requirements of marriage.

My Day, My Way 
After this discussion, your celebrant will prepare a draft of the ceremony. This should include elements such as their introduction, the readings you have chosen, and your vows. But remember, this is a draft only. From this point you can work together to refine your ceremony until it is exactly what you want.

It is a good idea to produce an Order of Service Booklet that outlines the ceremony and allows your guests to follow the procedure on the day.

Experience Tells 
Celebrants today are so experienced in all areas of a wedding that they can often help in ways you may not have thought about. Call your chosen celebrant early in the planning phase of your wedding and you’ll be surprised at the wealth of information they will offer.