Civil marriage for Lebanese citizens: DIY or via a travel agency?

While waiting for civil marriage to be fully enacted in Lebanon, the Lebanese are choosing to travel to get a civil marriage abroad. How can one get it done?

You can do it yourself or use the services of travel agencies.

Feel free to share your experience whether you got it done in a different location or a different way and whether you were happy with the way you chose or how you think it could have been done better.

Do it yourself

If you prefer to do it yourself, you can! Some prefer to invest themselves in organizing their own wedding without anyone’s help.

Here is what to do you if you are planning to go to Cyprus. Let’s consider that you decided to get married in Nicosia specifically because the Lebanese Embassy is located there:

  1. Call the Nicosia Municipality on +35722797238 to reserve a time/date. Make sure you do not pick an official holiday whether Cypriot or Lebanese and allocate enough time go get your documents and everything ready.
  2. a. Get 2 Individual Copies of Extract of Civil Registration (اخراج قيد فردي أصلي) for you and 2 for your partner.
    b. Get 2 Family Copies of Extract of Civil Registration (اخراج قيد عائلي أصلي) for you and 2 for your partner.
    Note: If you don’t have a valid Schengen Visa at the time of application, get an additional Family Copy of Extract of Civil Registration for you and your partner. These additional 2 don’t need to be certified but they will need to be translated. (They might ask for it)
  3. Get all the documents translated to English by a sworn translator, signed and sealed.
  4. a. If you have a valid Shengen visa – For you and your partner:
    1 Individual Copy of Extract of Civil Registration (in both Arabic and English) + 1 Family Copy of Extract of Civil Registration (in both Arabic and English) need to be signed and sealed by (in this order):
    – the Notary (كاتب العدل)
    – the Ministry of Justice (وزارة العدل)
    – the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (وزارة الخارجية)
    – the Consulate General of the Republic of Cyprus in Lebanon
    b. If you don’t have a valid Shengen visa, both of you need to get the visa application paperwork done in addition to all of the above and bring the additional Family Copies of Extract of Civil Registration (in both Arabic and English). Get the travel tickets, insurance and hotel reservation.
    The visa needs a maximum of a week to be processed should all documents be correct. Check the visa requirements or contact the Embassy of Cyprus in Lebanon
  5. Needed by Lebanese Embassy in Nicosia:
    a. 1 Individual Copy of Extract of Civil Registration (in both Arabic and English) + 1 Family Copy of Extract of Civil Registration (in both Arabic and English) need to be signed and sealed by (in this order):
    – the Notary (كاتب العدل)
    – the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (وزارة الخارجية)
    b. 2 Photocopies of every document recto-verso
    c. Photocopy of the first 4 pages of the passport
  6. Now you are ready to go!
    a. Make sure you make it to the Municipality by 8:30 am on the day of your wedding and apply for a Marriage by Special License. You should provide them with all the required documents in 4. a. (keep your passports with you) and the passports of 2 witnesses (they can provide them for you if needed)
    b. Come back the assigned time to celebrate your civil marriage. A marriage certificate will be delivered, ask for several copies
    – 1 for the Lebanese Embassy in Cyprus
    – 1 for the each Embassy you want to register your marriage with
    – and some for you  and for “future just in case”
    Note: Make sure you keep the Original Copy of your Marriage License with you and give it to no one.
  7. Mabrouk! Now you need to legalize your marriage (To be done with your spouse):
    a. A visit to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to legalize all the documents.
    b. Then a visit to the Lebanese Embassy in Nicosia, where you need:
    – the Original marriage certificate legalized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
    – papers of step 5
    – patience
  8. The Lebanese Embassy will ask you to contact a month later after giving you the number of your the diplomatic case (رقم الحقيبة الدبلوماسية).
  9. Finally, the last paper headache in Lebanon will start from the Lebanese Embassy in Nicosia to the husband Registrar of Personal Status; passing by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Interior and the wife Registrar of Personal Status. Thank you mokhtar (مختار) for handling this!
  10. When done, you can finally get a new Family Copy of Extract of Civil Registration and a Lebanese Marriage Certificate issued for you! Phewww!

If doing it yourself sounds like something impossible to do, you can use the services of travel agencies.

Travel Agencies

Travel agencies picked up the trend and started offering civil marriage packages a few years back. Here is a list of offers by agencies you have recommended:

Please note that prices are just indicative and are subject to change according to several variables like location, number of days/nights spent, hotel in addition to various inclusive services (bouquet, CD with photos, help of a representative etc…).

In Lebanon

  • Anastasia: Offers civil marriage in Cyprus and Greece. Starting rate $1,500 (excluding visa, wedding ceremony fees, certificates & registration, stamps..).
  • Barakat Travel: Costs around $1,550 to get married in Cyprus
  • Cleopatra Tours: Costs around $1000 to get married in Cyprus and spend one night there and around $900 to get married in the morning and come back to Lebanon on the same day
  • Five Stars Tours: Starting $900 excluding travel tickets, visa and papers to get married in Cyprus
  • Ghorayeb Tours: Costs around $3000 to get married in Istanbul, Turkey and spend 5 nights
  • Kurban Travel: Starting rate $1,480 to get married in Cyprus and $2,160 to get married in Santorini, Greece
  • Murr Travel: Costs around $1,000 to get married in Cyprus
  • Nadia Travel: Costs $1,900 to get married in Cyprus
  • Nakhal: Costs around $1,900 to get married in Cyprus
  • Orient Plus: Costs $1,485 to get married in Cyprus in the morning and come back to Lebanon on the same day
  • Planet World Travel: Offers both civil & religious ceremonies in Cyprus (no indication of price)
  • Rizk Travel: Costs $1,440 to get married in Cyprus
  • Sonomar Travel: Starting rate $1,069 excluding tickets, hotel, visa and translation of documents to get married in Cyprus
  • Wild Discovery: Starting rate is around $1,730 to get married in Cyprus, $1,400 in Greece and $3,800 in Italy.

In Cyprus

Thanks to everyone who pitched in with information. I hope that a much simpler procedure will be enacted soon!

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5 thoughts on “Civil marriage for Lebanese citizens: DIY or via a travel agency?

  1. a. 1 Individual Copy of Extract of Civil Registration (in both Arabic and English) + 1 Family Copy of Extract of Civil Registration (in both Arabic and English) need to be signed and sealed by (in this order):
    – the Notary (كاتب العدل)
    – the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (وزارة الخارجية)
    b. 2 Photocopies of every document recto-verso
    c. Photocopy of the first 4 pages of the passport

  2. Good evening.
    I am a lebanese woman married to a maltese man and living now in Malta.
    I am lost! Nobody can tell what procedures to do or what documentx i should have to règister my marriage in lebanon.
    There is a lebanese consulate in malta representing the lebanese embassy in rome.
    i called lhe ebanese consulate to ask about the procedures to register my marriage in lebanon , but…. no answer.

    Can you help me please to know how to register my marriage in lebanon !

    F**k our govrnnment and F***k all politicians.
    7aram lebnen ma3 heyk mas2oulin zbėlė (it is the trend now )

    Best regads
    Renėe

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