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tying the knot: marriage license requirements

Marriage Requirements for Jamaica

Residency Requirement: 24 hours
Necessary Documents: Certified copies of birth certificates that include father's name; proof of divorce or death certificate of former spouse/s (if applicable)
Note: Application must be made 48 hours in advance of trip by calling the Ministry of National Security at (876) 906-4908.
For More Info: Jamaica Tourist Board, (800) 233-4582, or http://www.jamaicatravel.com

Caribbean: Jamaica - Negril

Beach-lovers rejoice! A passion for sand, surf and sun are all that's required to fall in love with Negril.

Picture bliss: a laid-back, casual honeymoon on the shores of a seven-mile beach. With no building higher than the average palm tree, Negril's glitzy, all-inclusive resorts have a clear view of spectacular cliffs, blue seas, and stunning sunsets from Jamaica's west coast.

In a Word: Sun

Whether you're dancing on the sand or cheering the most spectacular sunset on the island, Negril's main attraction is that great big ball of fire in the sky.

before you go: need-to-know info

  • Entry requirements: Passport or certified birth certificate and state-issued picture ID; return ticket
  • Language: English, patois (Jamaican Creole words)
  • Currency: Jamaican dollar (J$), US dollar
  • Flight time: 4 hrs from NYC, 7.5 hrs from LA, 6 hrs from Chicago
  • Distance from airport: 1 hour by car from Montego Bay (take Dramamine if you get car sick, as taxi drivers take the curvy roads at quite a clip)
  • Hotel tax and service charge: 10% tax, service charge varies
  • Tipping: 10% - 15% if not included
  • Getting around: Licensed JUTA taxi recommended
  • Inspiration: Listen to Bob Marley
  • Note: Always ask permission before taking a picture of a Rastafarian
  • More info: Jamaica Tourist Board, (800) 233-4582

Why We'd Go: 3 Features You'll Never Forget

  • Beach: The white-sand Seven Mile Beach is a stunner. Soft, silky sand and beautiful cerulean water at the ideal temperature will beckon you to abandon your beach towel. If you're visiting at mid-day, don't forget your flip flops: that alluring sand gets scorchingly hot!

  • Aqua sights: Negril's 10-mile coral reef encircles Booby Cay, where the blue-footed booby bird breeds and where portions of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea were filmed. More than 40 dive sites for all experience levels can be explored in the clear, calm waters on the west coast, also perfect for snorkeling, windsurfing, and sailing.

  • Reggae: Jump up -- and down and sideways! (Be forewarned: Dirty dancing is the norm here. Keep your man close at hand and watch your back!)

When to Go: Negril at its Best

  • Best weather: December to April. Rain (called "liquid sunshine") is common, especially in October.

  • Best prices: Mid-April to mid-December; exact dates vary by hotel. Hurricane season swirls from June to November (September is trickiest).

  • Festival highlights: Carnival, celebrated every May, is the highlight of the year (Ocho Rios, Montego Bay, and Kingston celebrate in April).

Photo: The Jamaica Tourist Board

-- Lori Seto

See More: Caribbean + S. America