HOW TO PLAN YOUR WEDDING DURING CORONAVIRUS
Top 10 Things to Consider When Planning Your Wedding During the Coronavirus Pandemic
Read on for tips on planning a wedding during the Covid-19 outbreak. In this article, I outline everything from how your floral supply might be effected to hidden and lost fees resulting from a date change.
Also, check out the CDC website for updated guidelines and considerations for events and gatherings
1. Open-air wedding for safety
When hosting weddings amidst the pandemic, it would be preferable to choose an open-air venue for your celebration. This will help guests more readily maintain social distancing measures without feeling confined.
2. Expect a Smaller Guest Count
With the current situation, guest counts may drop due to fear of traveling or flying to your wedding destination. It is essential to be understanding if some of them opt to miss your special day. Not to mention, it’s recommended to lower your guest count according to the CDC mandate which states that "the size of an event or gathering should be determined based on state, local, territorial or tribal safety laws and regulations." At the time of writing this article, the state of Florida currently permits gatherings of up to 50 people, so it's best to check on updates within your state.
3. Some venues may only allow small gatherings
Many venues in Miami, such as Fairchild Botanical Garden, only permit small gatherings of 10 people, including your vendor team. So, that doesn't leave much space for actual guests. For example, if you have a photographer, videographer, officiant and musician, that’s 4 spots taken out of 10. Add in you and your partner, and you would then be left with 4 guests openings. Try to consider different options like having other guests on live stream.
4. Consider Virtual Wedding
A virtual wedding might be a good option for your elderly guests, who choose not to travel, or, if you and your partner prefer not to postpone your nuptials until next year.
5. Keep Guests Informed
If you have already sent out invitations, we recommend sending guests a note via email or text with updates of re-scheduling or cancellation - it’s the quickest and easiest way to keep them in-the-know.
6. Design your wedding with what's currently available
Depending on where they are sourced, lack of supply caused by the pandemic may hinder your florist's ability to deliver specific types of flowers. You may need to re-visit the drawing board and creatively re-shuffle your floral design. The same theory can also be applied to other items such as wedding favors ordered from abroad; you may be effected by lack of production supply or slower than normal shipping times, so be sure to take that into consideration.
7. It's best to source Local Goods
Just in line with number 6, consider working with what's available to you and what can support small businesses, especially at this time.
8. A date change could result in additional fees
Due to health and safety concerns, a lot of couples are choosing to re-schedule their party. In theory, it is a great idea; however, there could be hidden costs associated in doing so. Hotels and vendors may charge re-scheduling fees. Be sure to review your contracts before reaching out to your vendor team.
9. Be flexible in choosing a new date - you might not be able to hire the same wedding vendor team
To extrapolate on point 8, not only are rescheduling fees a concern, but also conflict of dates. Wedding vendors often book up a year or more in advance. So when choosing a new date for your wedding, you will need to first choose 3 or more possible dates in the hopes that your vendor team might all have the same date available. If you really love your vendor team, and don’t want to give anyone up, it’s a good idea to consider a Friday or Sunday date.
10. You might lose your deposits
If you do want to stick with a Saturday re-schedule, you might lose a vendor or 2 due to previous commitments. As such, you will likely lose the deposits originally placed with those vendors. Review your contract and reach out individually for a conversation with each one.
On a final note, once your party is set in motion once again, don’t forget to set in place extra hygiene precautions by offering guests masks and hand sanitizer. Also, you can practice social distancing and recommend a no handshake policy in your event to prevent any possibility of spreading the virus. Lastly, advise guests or any part of your vendor that if they feel any illness on the day of your event to stay home and rest.
Also, I created a series titled "Love in the Time of Coronavirus" where I interview experts in the wedding industry to answer some of the most pressing questions that couples have when planning their wedding during the Coronavirus pandemic. Click on each episodes thumbnail below to check it out!