I just needed to clear the air because there have been some very dishonest wedding planners out there who are telling their clients that beach weddings are illegal, and the only option is to book with an expensive resort, or to book with a private property. The reason they are doing this is that these wedding planners receive a hefty commission from the resort or property managers. In other words, flat out greed has compromised the ethics of these wedding planners.
Commercial weddings, meaning any wedding where money is exchanged on the premises, in this case the public beach of Hawaii, requires a permit from the DLNR. This permit is usually obtained by the minister or wedding planner. By law, no chairs or arbors are allowed at commercial weddings. There is an exception written that chairs can be used for anyone who has disabilities.
Non-Commercial weddings, meaning weddings where no commercial transactions take place on the premise, do not require permits. It is the ministers 1st Amendment right to practice his freedom of religion at the public beach to conduct a religious ceremony. It is the couples 1st Amendment right to practice their freedom of speech to say they love each other. It is the 1st Amendment right of on lookers to watch this happen, and to photograph it willingly.
Do not believe a word of these lying wedding planners.
ALL THE BEACHES IN HAWAII ARE PUBLIC PROPERTY. Meaning they are property of the public, not the State, not the City and County, and not the property of any beach resort. This is why Hawaii has a very hard time kicking homeless people off of the beach, it’s because they are sleeping on public property. They can kick the homeless out of city parks, but not the beach.
If we need a permit for your wedding, we’ll get it!