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Wedding Cakes

Zanzibar-Marriage Requirements


Legal Requirements for Getting Married in Zanzibar

Laws for mainland Tanzania differ from Zanzibar, please see marriage requirements for Tanzania if interested in eloping to Tanzania.

Allotted time:

Allow at least 21 days from arrival in Zanzibar to post Intent to Marry prior to wedding date. We recommend giving yourself more time due to preparation, weekends, holidays or unexpected delays.

Necessary legal documents:

  • Original or certified copy of birth certificates (notarized)
  • Valid Passports and copies (notarized)
  • Certificate of No Impediment * (notarized in your home country and translated into English, if applicable)
  • Certificate of Domicile (notarized affidavit for proof of current residence)
  • Two passport photos of each party
  • Divorce decree or death certificates, if applicable. Divorce must be finalized 6 month prior to remarrying.
  • Some places of worship may require additional documentation. It is recommended to contact the officiant prior to leaving on your trip, if applicable

Legal requirements to get married:

  • Ceremony (Civil/Religious)

All legally recognized weddings preformed in Zanzibar are civil ceremonies. Traditional, religious, non-denominational and secular are not recognized. However, a civil ceremony can accompany your ceremony of choice for local government records. It is recommended to contact the religious officiant of choice prior to leaving your home country for any necessary documents.

  • Age and Relation

The bride and groom must be at least 18 years of age. They cannot be related by blood, marriage or adoption.

  • Witnesses

Two witnesses over 18 years of age must be present for the ceremony and provide their passports.

  • Registry

Take all paperwork, photos and notarized copies to the in Zanzibar. We recommend contacting the Regional Commissioner’s Office prior to leaving your home country or collecting the necessary documents in order to verify these documents.

The couple will apply for their Marriage License at the Regional Commissioner’s Office. The Intent to Marry must be posted for 21 days prior to the wedding ceremony, pending objections. There is no license offered to bypass these 21 days. The 21 days are mandatory.

Schedule the wedding date with the Regional Commissioner’s Office.

Marriage Certificate:

  • The bride, groom and their witnesses will sign all the required documents at the ceremony. The newlyweds will obtain a Certificate of Marriage at the ceremony.
  • Some Embassy’s recommend applying for an International Certificate of Marriage (obtained from the Registrar of Marriages and endorsed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

*A Certificate of No Impediment, is also known as a Single Status Affidavit, Single Status Statutory Declaration, Certificate of No Record,  a Certificate of Legal Capacity to Contract Marriage, Certificate of Nulla Osta or a Certificate de coutume (plus an MP2A form).

Note: This information can change at any given moment. For up-to-date information, contact your embassy in the country in which you plan to marry.

We invite you to contact us with any new information. Be sure to note, “Update Marriage Requirements in Zanzibar” in the subject line.

PO Box 265,
Town Council, Vuga, Zanzibar, Tel: +255 24 230246/7