Hovercraft Elopement | Jenn + Andrew | Whistler Elopements

“Hands down the most epic adventure. Two words ‘HOVER CRAFT’!!!!” – Andrew

To say Andrew was stoked on their hovercraft elopement might be an understatement. Regardless, from initial ideas to sipping Prosecco post nuptials less than three weeks later, Jenn + Andrew’s hovercraft elopement came together perfectly.

We were initially hired to photograph Jenn + Andrew’s downtown Vancouver wedding in May 2021 through our sister company Tara Lilly Photography. When we met with them in Whistler mid-August 2020, it was a gorgeous sunny day in the mountains. We joked about how it would be perfect if they wanted to just elope that day, because they couldn’t ask for better weather. A few minutes later we were discussing what the possibilities of an elopement could look like. I ran through some of the transportation options including helicopters, 4×4’s or hiking as well as some valley locations. Then I mentioned the word ‘Hovercraft’. Andrew’s eyes LIT UP! I pulled up a video from my friend Nick at West Coast Hovercraft and then we were no longer talking about possibilities. We were now officially planning for their hovercraft elopement and looking at dates that worked.

‘Kitty Hawk’ is the jewel of the West Coast Hovercraft fleet. When powered up, it hovers on a cushion of air 20″ off of the water, and can travel at speeds reaching 60kph in flat water. Kitty Hawk can accommodate up to 10 passengers, is very fuel efficient, has low underwater noise (whale friendly!) and can land at virtually any beach. The possibilities that incorporating a hovercraft bring to your elopement are endless. An added bonus is being able to spin donuts on the water at full speed. Kitty Hawk is available to hire in Vancouver and Nanaimo for weddings, engagements, or transportation around any of the Gulf Islands.

Our final plan for Jenn + Andrew’s hovercraft elopement was set for a secluded beach on an island off the coast from Nanaimo. Two trips in Kittyhawk and all 15 people were assembled for an amazing sunset ceremony right on the edge of the Salish Sea.

Q+A with Jenn + Andrew

Q: Why did you change your wedding plans from a large wedding downtownVancouver to an adventure elopement in Nanaimo?

A: This was totally due to COVID19! We were planning for an 80 person wedding for the Spring of 2021 hoping the provincial health guidelines would allow. Then during our mini engagement photoshoot in early August with Steve, he gave us a vision of an elopement with a hovercraft which we couldn’t say no to! ???????? We provided Whistler Elopements with our colour palette and the vibe we were going for and let them run with it. In under a month we had the day that was captured by the video and it was better than anything we could have imagined! 

Q: How did it feel cutting your guest list down and making the wedding more about you?

A: It was hard at first, but with the restrictions not letting up, we decided to go ahead and get married with just us and our immediate families. We will be celebrating with the rest of our friends and family once we can. 

Q: Your micro-wedding was planned in less than three weeks – what did that process look like? 

It was a whirlwind!  We first had to ensure the dress could be altered in time, thank goodness it could as a time slot had just opened up. Next was asking our immediate families if they were available on such short notice. After some very shocked reactions and OK’s, the date was set. Luckily, and thanks to the pandemic, no one had anything else going on!  Next, we quickly rushed to sort out all the remaining details for our last minute destination wedding. We booked 2 AirBnB’s and hired a caterer from Victoria to serve our 10 person reception. It was definitely nerve wracking to book all our vendors without meeting anyone in person and only reading reviews. We had to go with our gut instincts which made the process scary but fun. Whistler Elopements took care of the ceremony details and we just had to provide our colour palette and our bouquet/boutonniere samples and that was the big stuff done. Our family and our wedding planner made the actual wedding day perfect and it was executed flawlessly.

Q: This question is basically for Andrew – how excited were you about the hovercraft? 

Hands down the most epic adventure. Two words “HOVER CRAFT”!!!! 

Q: We have been to 100’s of weddings, and we have seen more emotion and love between the two of you than almost any other couple (100% true). How did you feel starting your wedding day until finishing your wedding day? 

Andrew: Nervous and excited at the beginning I was going to marry my best friend and I wanted everything to be perfect for my soon to be wife. I got through the first look with minimal tears, I will take it as a win. After that I was on cloud nine for the rest of the day. 

Jen: Super overwhelmed with love, joy, excitement and all the things. I was beyond excited and happy that I got to marry the love of my life that day. Even though we only had a small group with us, we made our tiny elopement into the wedding of our dreams. I couldn’t have been happier with how it all turned out.

Q: What was the highlight of your day? 

Andrew: Standing on the point where I had just married my best friend and the love of my life. 

Jen: The highlight for me was the first look. It was a small moment we had to ourselves before the craziness of the day really ramped up. My heart was bursting when I saw my Groom waiting for me. He looked so incredibly handsome. I have never felt so much love in a moment and I will never forget that feeling. 

first look before hovercraft elopement

emotional first look between bride and groom

groom crying during first look with future wife

bride crying during first look

leaving for hovercraft elopement

hovercraft waiting for wedding party elopement

walking to hovercraft for ride to elopement

excitement for hovercraft elopement

sitting in hovercraft on the way to elopement

lift off of the hovercraft for ride to wedding

hovercraft elopement landing with passengers

cheering after hovercraft does donuts on the way to elopement

hovercraft landing for elopement on rocky beack

disembarking hovercraft for elopement on ocean

groom excited about hovercraft ride on the way to his elopement

walking across rocky beach for hovercraft elopement

family landing on beach after second hovercraft trip for wedding ceremony

walking down deserted beach to elopement accessed by hovercraft

toasting wedding couple while waiting for hovercraft elopement ceremony

father walking daughter to her ceremony during hovercraft elopement

ceremony location for hovercraft elopement

epic ceremony location during hovercraft elopement

bride and groom during wedding ceremony

wide angle of island elopement ceremony

groom wiping brides tears during hovercraft elopement ceremony

vows during elopement on remote island

bride reading her vows on island wedding ceremony

emotional elopement ceremony during hovercraft elopement

laughing during elopement ceremony on island

first kiss after hovercraft elopement

cheering and congratulations after wedding ceremony on deserted island

sunset portraits

wedding couple walking to hovercraft during elopement

riding in hovercraft during sunset

bridal portraits on rocky island accessed with hovercraft

rocky hovercraft elopement location

drone photos during hovercraft elopement on deserted island

bridal reflection photo in tidal pools

drone photos of wedding couple

epic wedding portrait at hovercraft elopement

classic wedding portrait on rocky island

sunset bridal portraits with veil

drone photo of hovercraft elopement

bride and groom waiting for hovercraft to pick them up after elopement

Hovercraft Elopement Vendors

Planning | Whistler Elopements
Photography | Tara Lilly Photography
Videography | Paul Cameron Productions
Hovercraft | West Coast Hovercraft
Florals | Simply Flowers
Hair Stylist | Hair by Alana Lyla
Make-up Artist | AV Make-up Artistry
Caterer | Truffles Catering Company
Reception Planning | Royal City Events