There’s no need to state the obvious. Coronavirus has taken over world for the foreseeable future and, because of it, it’s more important than ever that we all be prepared.
Q: In the world of weddings and events, how do we continue planning without having all of the facts up front?
A: With caution.
Most wedding planners and industry professionals are not also doctors, lawyers, and/or psychics. We are, however, creative rule followers who happen to work excellent in the hands of crisis. COVID-19 now being one of them.
But it’s important for everyone to stay patience, show each other kindness and respect, and work together during these unprecedented times. We don’t all have answers individually, but together we’ll have more than just one of us alone.
For couples who have decided to postpone their upcoming wedding, here’s what to do:
Stay Informed, But Don’t Panic
Keeping up with the news daily is the best way to stay current with the forever changing pandemic. With reports coming in hourly, there is an influx of news and information out there to soak in.
Listen to the governments warnings and CDC guidelines!
Now is not the time to be a rebel. The more people go against the recommended regulations, the longer this pandemic will potentially be in our lives. The longer COVID-19 continues to spread, the longer life (and your wedding) will continue to be placed on hold.
In summary, stay home people.
Trust Your Planner
You hired your planner to be a guiding force and make great decisions for you and your wedding day, right? Now is no different.
Consult with your planner honestly about your opinions and feelings. Work with them to build a list of priorities of the things you absolutely want to keep in tact with your wedding plans and those that you’re more comfortable allowing leniency’s .
The more we know, the better it will be when it comes to us helping you develop any potential contingency plans.
Review Your Vendor Contracts
Your vendor contracts have been your planning bible when it’s come to all things involving policies and boundaries. Now is truly no different. There’s bound to be some language in their contracts that cover their postponement/cancellation policies.
Familiarize yourself with their terms, but call them directly to discuss. We are all experiencing this specific situation for the first time together. If you show them patience, kindness, respect, and flexibility…they’ll likely do the same for you in return.
The majority of your vendors are likely small business owners, myself included. We didn’t enter into a service-based business because we don’t have empathy and compassion for others. We all share a common goal— and that’s figuring out a plan that works in everyone’s best interest, not just one or another.
After all, what goes around comes around, no?
Work On Your Plan B
As a wedding planner, I never get more pained looks on my couples faces than when I start to discuss Plan B situations. (I promise I’m not evil guys!)
Before, Plan B typically meant discussing what to do in the event of rain, extreme winds, etc. Now, in todays terms of “Plan B” it’s much more serious. We’ve been working with our couples on what to do if their wedding day cannot happen on that specific date at all. It’s tough.
But when it comes to any alternative situations, I always like to discussed two things with my couples: What are the highest priority items you’d like to keep as in tact as possible on your wedding day? What are some things you’re willing to be more flexible about?
I’d strongly encourage everyone to consider those questions yourselves when discussing any future plans.
Come To A Decision & Stick To It
Making the decision to postpone is not an easy one, and also one that shouldn’t be taken lightly. Postponing anything creates a huge ripple effect in the lives of everyone involved. Besides the obvious change of date, there are crucial things to consider when you’re beginning to make your final decisions.
Some of those include:
-Are my vendors available on our new potential date?
-If all of my vendors are not available, how much of my vendor team will we be able to keep in tact?
-If any of my vendors are not available on our postponement date, will we lose any money we’d paid to them so far?
-My spring wedding is now moving to late fall…how does this effect the overall vibe of the day?
Once you’ve considered your options for all angles, come to a decision and stick to it.
Update Your Guests & Wedding Websites
Cluing your guests in on your postponement should be your first step after altering your vendor team. You’ll need to allow them time to readjust their calendars, cancel any pending hotel reservations and/or travel plans, and save a new date on their calendar for you.
Utilizing tools like Paperless Post and your wedding website are perfect methods to get your message across. If you have a spring wedding, many of you have already sent out your invitations.
Let me tell you this…there is NO NEED to resend invites with your new wedding date. Update your guests through technology and save some trees instead.