A Christmas engagement | Next steps for wedding planning

If you had a Christmas engagement or a New Year proposal, you’ll want to know ‘what comes next?’ Here’s our handy guide to wedding planning for 2022/3.

Christmas engagement

‘Christmas is the most popular time of year to propose. Between the 24th December and 1st January, there are more proposals and engagements than at any other time of year.’ The Marriage Proposal Survey

You’re engaged!

Congratulations! But, what comes next?

Proposal at Christmas

The first question your friends and family are likely to ask is, ‘Can I see the ring?’ But the second is, ‘Have you set a date yet?’

You may not have thought that far ahead, but if you want to get married in 2022 or 2023, you’ll need to get your skates on! Most wedding venues and celebrants take the majority of bookings between January and March.

And, don’t forget, there are lots of people who’d planned to marry in 2020 and 2021 who postponed until 2022 because of Covid-19. So, if you want to get ahead of the game for a wedding in 2022 or 2023, here are our top tips:

1. Choose a humanist wedding

Humanist wedding ceremonies are ideal if you would like a meaningful ceremony that isn’t religious – and you want a ceremony that is unique and personal to you.

A humanist ceremony can be held anywhere, which gives you ultimate flexibility in finding a venue or outdoor location on the day of your choice.

Photo by kind permission of Igor Demba

2. Have a weekday wedding

By being more flexible on the day of the week, you are much more likely to find a celebrant and a venue that will be available. (And some venues are less expensive on a weekday than on a Saturday!)

Photo with kind permission of Sally Elvin

3. Book a twilight ceremony

How about a romantic twilight ceremony with candles and fairy lights? Most Humanist Ceremonies celebrants are more than happy to take ceremonies in the evening and into the night if necessary – and you’re less likely to get a clash of bookings.

Photo by kind permission of The Humble Photography Company

4. Have an outdoor wedding

You can avoid booking a venue altogether by having a humanist wedding ceremony outdoors — no licensed premises necessary. Talk to your celebrant about a beach or woodland ceremony, or an intimate wedding in your garden.

Humanist weddings can be held outdoors. Photo by Alexander Crane.

5. Find your local celebrant

Our celebrants are part of a network, so if one’s not available on your chosen date, they can help you find a colleague who is. You can find your local celebrants on our online map.

Humanist wedding celebrants NI

Some of our humanist wedding celebrants in Northern Ireland. Photo by Simple Tapestry.

Humanist wedding ceremonies

Find out more about humanist weddings.

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We’ve teamed up with our patron Stephen Fry to explore humanist ideas about some of life’s big questions. Over four videos, Stephen Fry examines life’s biggest questions and brings to light how a humanist perspective grounded in rational thinking and kindness can be empowering, motivating, humbling, or even liberating.

How do you know if you’re a humanist? Take our quiz to find out.


Our weddings

Your ceremony will focus on your love story. It can include unique vows, readings, poems, and any symbolic acts you choose.

Ideas and inspiration

Are you at the beginning of your wedding planning journey? We have top tips and real wedding stories to inspire you.

Find your wedding celebrant

There are exciting times ahead as you choose your humanist celebrant and plan a personalised wedding that's unique to you.