The world is currently experiencing a wave of uncertainty (aka, it’s a hot mess out there) but this doesn’t mean we can’t still find ways to focus on the important, exciting, and special aspects of our lives, including weddings!
It can be hard during this time to focus on the positive but when there is positivity and loving energy, you can get through any challenges or uncertainty. If you and your partner are in the midst of planning your wedding day, I’ve put together a few key tips for you.
THE BIG QUESTION:
Deciding Whether to Postpone or Cancel
When it comes to knowing the future, I know about as much as a magic 8-ball at this point. But when it comes to deciding whether or not to postpone or cancel your wedding here are some specifics you’ll want to discuss with your partner and family:
- Is there a stay-at-home mandate for the date of your wedding?
- Do you have lots of guests with health risk factors?
- Do you have a lot of guests flying in from other places that have travel restrictions or stay-at-home orders?
- Are you able to get everything ready in-time before your date? (i.e., order bridesmaids dresses, have alterations, do taste testing)
- What amount of stress are you willing to undertake to pull off your wedding?
- Do you have the flexibility to make changes? Both time-wise and financially.
Experts are recommending that instead of canceling your entire wedding, you postpone it. By postponing your wedding, you’ll incur fewer financial losses than if you cancel it completely. Most of your vendors have no-doubt had non-refundable retainers and if you’re able to maintain a booking status with them, you don’t lose out on that money.
Vendors and your venue will be more than happy to help you make alternative arrangements, ensuring everyone benefits. If your wedding is in the near future, start the process of choosing another date by speaking to your venue. They will be the first door to open when it comes to finding that new date.
I’ve had brides send out a poll to survey their vendor teams with date options from their venue, to see which date would allow them to keep the most vendors and not incur fees.
If your wedding is still several months away, there’s probably no need to change your date at this stage. Naturally, keep your ears open for changes in regulations and restrictions but for now, there really is no need to cancel your wedding completely.
Personally, I would wait until the 4-6 week mark to make a final decision, but start talking to your vendors now.
If You Choose To Postpone
If you feel that you would be more comfortable moving your date out to the next season, please listen to what I’m about to say next. If you’re looking to move your wedding from a peak date (a 2020 Saturday June-September) to a new peak date in the following year (2021), understand that that takes income away from your vendors. By moving to a new peak date, you take away the opportunity to book new clients. Please consider having your wedding on a Friday or a Sunday the following year (2021). This will help keep businesses open so that 2 years of income do not dissolve into 1.
Use Your Resources
As mentioned, your vendors are here to help you (like, me!). They are professionals who want to keep their couples happy. There’s no need to go through this alone. Ask your wedding planner, venue, and other vendors for help when rescheduling your wedding day. Not only will this help relieve some of the pressure, but they may be able to assist you with some helpful suggestions that will make all this a lot easier too.
Focus on One Thing at a Time
When you’re faced with re-planning an entire wedding, it can get very overwhelming, very quickly. Slow down and take a deep breath.
Let’s start by carefully jotting down everything you need to take care of, starting with a new date. Here is who I would talk to first and foremost when it comes to rescheduling:
- Venue (find several new date options)
- Photography & Videography
These are some of the major players when it comes to your wedding and more than likely hold the highest value in retaining your deposits. Consider using the polling method for sending the new date options to your vendors.
Once you’ve been able to secure the best new date option, then you can move forward with notifying family and friends.
Just Keep Swimming
This can be easier said than done but positivity will be key at this time. Take a note out of Dory’s playbook and “just keep swimming, swimming, swimming”. Focus on love, unity, and the bigger picture. We will all get through this and you can take solace in the fact that you’re not the only bride who needs to navigate these challenges.
Nobody planned for any of this to happen but the good news is that you’re surrounded by people who will help ensure you still have the wedding of your dreams. WE GOT THIS!