Firstly, there are certain types of ceremonies available :
1. Legal Wedding Ceremony non-Moslem involving a
Religious Ceremony followed by Civil Registration to legalise
2. Religious Only Ceremony involving a Religious Official, but no
3. Balinese Blessing Ceremony involving a Balinese Officiant
only, and no Government Registrar.
4. Ceremony of Commitment involving an lay Officiant
only, and no Government Registrar or Religious Official.
5. Legal Wedding Ceremony - Moslem involving a Moslem
Official, but no Government Registrar.
Note: Unless otherwise specified, all information on this site refers to non-Moslem couples.
Specific information related to Moslem Marriages can certainly be answered upon request.
It is not possible to be 'legally' married in Bali or indeed anywhere in Indonesia without first having a religious ceremony and, only after such a ceremony has taken place will the Government Registry Officials register and legalize your marriage.
Without Government Registration, a marriage will not be recognized as legal either here in Indonesia or anywhere else in the world.
Documents which will be received at the end of your marriage ceremony :
One and sometimes more, depending on your religion - 'Certificate of Marriage' from your religious official and two legalizing 'Certificates of Marriage' from the Government Registry Office responsible for registering and legalizing your marriage.
Note: The Civil Authority/Legalizing 'Certificates of Marriage' issued in Bali are now issued in two languages ie: Indonesian and English so it is no longer necessary for you, if you are from an English speaking country, to have an official English translation of this certificate issued.
Religious Only - Non Moslem
A Religious Only Ceremony is a 'spiritual ceremony' based on the couples' own faith ie: Protestant Christian, Catholic, Buddhist or Hindu and has no legal implication at all. This type of ceremony is most often selected by couples who are already legally married to each other and wish to renew their vows or couples who, for some reason, do not wish to be legally married.
Document which will be received :
One 'Certificate of Marriage', more for some religions, from your religious official.
Catholic Ceremonies may only take place inside a Catholic Church and cost considerably more than Protestant Ceremonies.
Buddhist Ceremonies may only take place in a Buddhist Temple.
Balinese Blessing Ceremony
A Balinese Blessing Ceremony is just that - a simple Blessing in Balinese style. This ceremony has no legal implications and, because it is only a blessing rather than a formal ceremony it allows a Balinese Officiant to pray for good things for the future of the couple and to bless their new beginning.
Document which may be received :
One 'Certificate of Blessing' with no religious or legal implications.
A Commitment Ceremony is performed by a lay Officiant and, like the Religious Only and Balinese Blessing, is a ceremony for couples wishing to experience a ceremony with special meaning to them in Bali - perhaps to renew their vows. It is also suitable for couples who are unable to be married to each other because of enjoying an alternative lifestyle but wish to make a commitment to each other for a life together.
Document which may be received :
One 'Certificate of Commitment' with no religious or legal implications.
Catholic Ceremonies - since 2011however, may no longer take place at hotels, restaurants, villas etc.
They may only take place inside of a Catholic Church.
The costs for using the church for a wedding are reasonably high but generally include use of air-conditioning, where it exists (some of the Catholic Churches are actually open or semi-open air), some flowers on the altar and perhaps a few other flowers ie: simple floral decoration.
There are a great deal more papers required by Catholic couples and a series of lessons in marriage area also orequired prior to the wedding. You would do the marriage 'instruction' in your own Church and bring the certification received at the end of it with you to Bali with all the other Catholic Church documents you require.
The marriage instruction course takes between 6-8 weeks in most cases.
Naturally, Catholics who have been previously married in the Catholic Church may not marry again through the Church.
One original of the Certificate of Marriage issued by the Catholic Church Authorities in Bali must be submitted to your own Catholic Church after returning from Bali. This is necessary for the Church to update their records of marriage on your behalf.