For couples who had a grand wedding planned before the COVID-19 pandemic, it was just their luck to time such a big event in 2020. With some places still on partial lockdown to prevent the spread of the virus and everyone encouraged to stay home except for essential errands, wedding receptions seem impossible now.
Not really, event planners say. A recent Wedding Report survey revealed that 42% of couples tying the knot this year held on to their original wedding dates. A good move, according to wedding coordinators, because it’s not a matter of whether the wedding can push through or not, but a question of how you will make it happen. You can still continue your wedding during the pandemic. Here’s what they advise.
Reschedule Your Wedding Date
If you have to reschedule your wedding date, prioritize the venue and caterer. Wedding bookings are made months ahead so you might have a hard time rebooking. You and the venue manager should agree on a new date, and check if your caterer is free on the day. In this unprecedented time, many wedding suppliers are willing to reschedule instead of refunding the down payment, especially near your wedding date. Event managers suggest that you grab this option to take the stress off rescheduling.
Adjust Your Guest List
First, you definitely need to trim down your guest list. In most cities, gatherings may be allowed for not more than ten people, with social distancing measures observed. This means you have to stick to immediate family members and close friends. If you don’t have a traditional wedding entourage, limit your invitees to the required number of witnesses plus a handful of guests.
If you’re scaling down a wedding for which you’ve given invitations, make sure you inform everyone of the change and explain the reason clearly and politely. Inform first those who are coming from out of town or country, so they could make changes to travel plans. Do the same if you’re rescheduling the event and let them know the new date right away.
Share the Moment Digitally
All roads lead to the Internet—and that’s something we have to accept now. Even wedding ceremonies aren’t spared. To let more family members and friends witness your special day, you may stream your wedding live via Facebook, Whatsapp, or Zoom, allowing other guests to participate digitally from any place in the world. If you want all your intended guests to be able to attend the reception, you may hold the ceremony now, live streaming it, and postpone the reception party for next year, assuming it will be allowed.
Postpone the Date-Sensitive Tasks
If you haven’t done your invitations, wedding giveaways, and engraving for the bride’s or groom’s wedding bands, postpone them until the deadest deadline—or until you’ve finalized a new date. It would be easier to have them done with the correct date than have them redone after the fact to reflect the date change. If they’ve been completed, however, work out a new agreement or contract with your supplier. Most suppliers would have digital templates or molds that they could easily tweak and reprint or reproduce for a minimal additional fee.
Apart from these, all other aspects of your wedding, such as the cake (if it’s a separate contract from the caterer), photo and video coverage, limousine and other car services, reception entertainment, flowers, and others are quite flexible. There are numerous suppliers you can turn to if your original supplier can no longer provide for you on the new date. Decide early so you can finalize the arrangements.
By rescheduling your wedding, downsizing your guest list, arranging for online streaming of your ceremony, and taking care of date-sensitive aspects of the event, you can still target a 2020 wedding—virus or no virus. Just don’t lose sight of the real purpose of this event: to celebrate your love and relationship with your partner.