A professional acrobat couple from Los Angeles are taking the plunge and getting married – 38 times across the world. Rhiann Woodyard, 32, and her fiancée Cheetah Platt, 30, are traveling around the globe to take their vows in 12 different countries in 83 days. The newlyweds claim that the adventurous – and enviable – worldwide tour costs less than a traditional wedding in the U.S. Metro spoke to Woodyard about their globetrotting nuptials.
Why are you getting married in as many places as possible?
– Well, after Cheetah proposed, we started discussing wedding options. We found that not only was everything incredibly expensive for a one-day event, but we couldn't find anything that suited us... So, we started to think outside the box and eventually came up with traveling around the world. I had never traveled, so not only would it be an amazing experience for me, but once we looked into it, we found we'd actually be saving money this way! We were thrilled!
You said, "saving money”?!
– Yes, this worldwide wedding has actually saved us thousands of dollars compared to a standard wedding in the United States. We've spent far less than $10,000 on this trip; our actual ceremonies are free, so we only had to pay for our flights, lodging, and transportation. We used our credit card airline miles, and our friends and family have helped us tremendously. Instead of giving us the typical wedding gift of a household item, we asked that if they were planning on giving a gift, that they use our alternative gift registry on honeyfund.com. There they could contribute to our adventure by buying us a night at one of our accommodations in Morocco, or a safari in Kenya.
So, it's just for money-saving?
– Instead of a costly one-day event, we wanted a memorable adventure. An experience that would not only last a lifetime, but help us grow as a couple. This idea of many personal and intimate weddings that we get to share with our loved ones via videos and photos, is the perfect way to express to each other that our love is endless and limitless. We have learned so much about ourselves, our relationship, and so many cultures through this wedding.
Tell us about the different wedding customs and traditions you experienced…
– It's amazing how beautifully diverse the wedding customs around the world are, yet how similar the message of them all is.
But which was the most amazing?
– It's very difficult to choose, but so far the most amazing has been getting married next to rescued elephants. The Ran-Tong rescue center in Chiang Mai, Thailand, allowed us to have a ceremony with these majestic animals and it was so moving. It was also incredibly funny, as they definitely had their own ideas about where they wanted to stand (which was usually right in front of the camera blocking everything). It was an unforgettable day.
How many weddings have you celebrated so far?
– So far we've had 21 weddings, but we still have about a month left. There's many more to go. All in all we're going to have weddings in 12 countries. We didn't want to limit our ceremonies to one per country. It doesn't cost anything to hold the actual ceremony, and each country is so amazingly beautiful, diverse, and has so much to offer. So we decided to have as many weddings as we found locations for.
Is there any point of you having an exotic honeymoon then?
– Yes, we are planning on having one. It may be a few months after we get back as just a weekend getaway, or it may be a year or two from now as another three-month excursion around the world. We haven't planned it yet, but we do know we will have one.
Are you planning to organize your future children’s wedding the same way in the future?
– Not at all. Our children may have a completely different idea of what a wedding means to them, or they may not want a wedding at all! It will be theirs, so it will be whatever they make of it.