Marrying a non-European in Europe

Getting married in Europe can be a bureaucratic nightmare when you’re an international couple. Fortunately, there is a solution: Marry in Denmark.

Vanesa Ortiz
4 min readJan 18, 2017


In some european countries like Germany, getting married requires a lot of paperwork and time, especially if your partner is not a European citizen. To give an example: in order to get married in Berlin, you must start the application process at least six months before your desired wedding date. Furthermore, marrying a non-European requires a visit to the registry office, which can take up the entire day, just to get all the information needed to start the rather complicated application process.

For international couples who do not want to go through the bureaucratic battle and wait a minimum of six months to get married, there is a simple solution: Denmark makes it very easy for international couples from all over the world and of any gender to get married.* Couples only need a few documents and can marry within just 3–4 weeks, making it the quickest country to get married in the EU. Some paid agencies can even organize wedding appointments within three days.

While every Danish town hall has their own requirements and regulations, this guide shows the requirements for the Copenhagen City Hall, where my American husband and I, a German citizen, got married.

The application process was very simple and well explained on the website of the Copenhagen City Hall’s wedding office.

All I needed to do was:

  • Transfer 850 DKK (Danish Krone, ~€115/$140) to the wedding office’s bank account (info listed on the “payment details” section of the website) and save the proof of payment as a pdf.
  • Scan the main pages of our passports.
  • Scan my fiancé’s German residence permit (visa).
  • Fill out and save the application form (notice of marriage) from the wedding office’s website.
  • Get a certificate of marital status.

As a German citizen, instead of getting a certificate of marital status, I could alternatively get an advanced registration certificate (“Erweiterte Meldebescheinigung”) at my city…