Yikes! This is a scary time our society is going through right now as we’re being advised to avoid large gatherings. As a bride or mother of the bride, you may be trying to determine how COVID-19 impacts your wedding. If your wedding is in the next 90 days, you’re probably trying to figure out what to do. COVID-19 and your wedding can be very scary and tumultuous right now!
Brides, grooms, and their parents are concerned about the well-being of their loved ones as well as trying to understand wedding options and the financial impact during the COVID-19 pandemic.
UPDATE: On March 16, 2020…The White House has advised people not to gather in groups of more than 10.
The guidelines also say states that have seen community spread should close bars, restaurants and other public places, though again, that is not a mandate.cnn.com
Venues are canceling events and gatherings of more than 10 people are banned in some areas. COVID-19 is causing a considerable loss of income in the wedding industry and a great deal of stress for brides, grooms, mothers of the bride, and all of their loved ones.
Wedding Decision Factors
If your wedding is soon, you’re faced with three possible decisions… postpone, cancel or continue as planned or on a smaller scale. Each of these options is a tough decision and carries financial and health/ wellness impacts.
Health and Wellness – Think about your well being as well as the wellness of others. Especially since some guests may have elderly family members in their homes or have compromised immune systems. Also, wedding guests may not show signs of the disease, but maybe carrying the virus.
Personal Preferences – You and your fiance have thoughts and preferences around your wedding. Maybe you want to keep the date but reduce the guest list to family only and then hold a friends and family reception at a later time. Perhaps you want to postpone your wedding for a few months.
Financial – Review your contracts and work with your venue, vendors, and wedding planner to determine the financial implications of postponing, canceling, or proceeding with a smaller guest list.
6 Steps for Making Decisions about Your Wedding and COVID-19
- Read your contracts from your vendors and venues. Pay special attention to cancellation, impossibility to perform and postponement clauses.
- Think about your options. What do you want to do? What’s most important to you and your fiance? What is your best-case scenario? What is your worst-case scenario? Be open and flexible.
- Communicate with your venues, your vendors (photographer, officiant, caterer, DJ, transportation, florist, etc), and your wedding planner. Have a phone conversation with them and ask the vendors where they stand. They may have some ideas that you haven’t thought of yet. Most venues and vendors will try to work with you. They’re potentially losing a lot of money during this time.
- Document your conversation in an email to ensure everyone has the same understanding. The vendors and venues are talking to many other brides, so take the initiative to document your conversation.
- Make a list of things that need to be stopped or canceled, add any new tasks to your wedding planning checklist, and check in on your outstanding wedding planning tasks to adjust the dates if needed.
- Communicate any changes and safety precautions to your family and guests.
“Walking into the wedding, guests were greeted with servers holding silver trays full of hand sanitizer and were handed a glass of Champagne by a waiter wearing a white glove. A pack of Lysol wipes was placed at each guest’s seat, and rolls of monogrammed toilet paper were available too. “Love in the time of coronavirus: Couples are scrambling to prepare last-minute wedding alternatives BY STEPHANIE CAIN
Wedding Safety Tips
- Have hand sanitizer at the entrance, in the restrooms, and on your tables.
- Add white gloves to your wedding attire. Servers and guests can all don gloves.
- Encourage social distancing. Ask the officiant and your DJ to remind guests during the ceremony and reception.
- Make signs or add in COVID-19 safety tips on your programs… No hugging, kissing or shaking hands.
- Can you do a live feed for people who can’t attend? Maybe do a FaceTime first look with your grandparents, so they feel special.
- Reevaluate a buffet or setting out appetizers and change to a plated dinner and servers passing appetizers.
- Post updates on your wedding website or create a Facebook group to post wedding updates.
- Use your wedding website or Facebook group, to ask guests if they are still planning on coming to your wedding. Your vendors will still need a guest count, and you don’t want to pay for meals for people who can’t attend.
Remember B-R-E-A-T-H! You have put a lot of work into your wedding and it’s natural to be frustrated, sad, and mad. Please don’t take it out on your wedding vendors. The more understanding you are, the more your vendors will try to make something work for you.
None of us have control over this virus, and it’s important that we listen to the health experts. Please feel free to reach out to me. Blessings to each of you, and take care!
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