Has Covid-19 impacted your wedding plans?
This past week has been very unsettling! We’ve been watching the world deal with the pandemic of Covid-19 (coronavirus), and it just seems to get worse and worse. Now that it has hit North America and is directly impacting our lives, it is more real than ever, and in some cases, terrifying!
For so many couples planning a wedding, there are a ton of questions. Should they cancel? Should they postpone? Should they keep planning? Many of you are looking for definitive answers, but unfortunately, it’s too early. We don’t know how things are going to play out, but there are a few things we can suggest that may help decision-making a little easier.
Question: Should we cancel our wedding?
Answer: There is a lot that is happening right now. Things are changing hourly with updates from medical professionals who are studying the virus and our government. Right now, the Alberta Government has recommended that all events with 250 people or more need to be cancelled for the immediate future. They have encouraged social distancing in an effort to prevent the spread of the virus. This means that restaurants, bars, movie theatres, sporting events, and even schools have been cancelled. This means that if your wedding is in either March or April, you should seriously look at cancelling or postponing your wedding. If your wedding is in May or June, then it may be worth considering, but you might be best to wait a couple of weeks and see how things look, before making a rash decision. For those of you whose weddings are in the summer or even in the fall, it is too early to decide. Take a couple of weeks to let things play out and for more information to be come available.
Question: How do you cancel or postpone a wedding?
Answer: The first thing you need to do before either cancelling or postponing your event, is figure out what it will cost you. A number of venues may be willing to reschedule your event, but remember, that all of this is new to them as well. If your wedding is schedule for March, April, or even May, you should definitely try to reach them on the phone or by email to talk about rescheduling your event. See what options they have. If your event is further off, possibly give them until the end of March to deal with their current and upcoming weddings, before making inquiries about possibilities.
Once you speak to your venue, and make a plan to go forward, then you will need to begin contacting your other vendors. Recognize that just because you change your date does not automatically mean that they will be available. Vendors like photographers, DJs, videographers, caterers, planners, and potentially even florists may have already made commitments to other clients. You will need to check with each one individually if they can accommodate the date change and whether or not they are any financial penalties for doing so. (I think most vendors are aware of how difficult this situation is. It is impacting them just as much as it is impacting you. I sincerely believe that the majority of vendors will want to work with you make your wedding a success and will accommodate the change in date as long as they are not already booked.)
Question: Will our guests be able to travel for our wedding?
Once again, the information on this is changing by the moment. Travel restrictions into Canada has been put into place. Flights are being cancelled, with airlines cancelling even more in the coming days. There are no guarantees that guests will be able to travel for your wedding. What this means is you may have to reexamine your guest count and focus more on just guests that might be able to attend in the immediate area. Continue to watch the news for developments in this area.
If you are planning a destination wedding the Canadian Rockies in the next month or two with the majority of your guests travelling to this area, you should definitely look at postponing or cancelling.
Question: Should I get wedding insurance?
Answer: Wedding insurance is something I often recommend to couples. It is meant to protect you in case your wedding needs to be cancelled for any reason, including covering the costs of cancelling your vendors. However, in light of Covid-19, many insurance companies are changing their policies and coverage will not be the same. You are best to check with your own insurance provider to see what is covered and what is not.
If you already had wedding insurance prior to Covid-19, then check your policy to see if postponing or cancelling will be covered.
Question: If I am in the middle of planning my wedding for later in the summer or in the fall, should we continue planning?
Answer: Frankly, it is too early to tell. We don’t know what is going to happen. Currently, we’re being told this social distancing is to limit the impact Covid-19 has on the general public and reduce how quickly it is spread. While we know that things won’t be back to normal in a week or two, we can’t predict how long this will go on.
For now, I encourage couples just to sit back for a couple of weeks or so and just put things on hold. I encourage you to let things play out a bit and see how things land. Try and get a better fell for what is going to happen before making any big decisions.
Question: Should we meet with vendors in person?
Answer: Right now, the government is recommending that in-person meetings be put on hold. If you feel an important need to go ahead with booking vendors, then schedule a phone meeting. However, as there are still so many unknowns, I really do encourage people to hold off for a couple of weeks to a month and allow people to get a better grip on how these new guidelines we are living with will impact their lives.
For additional information about Covid-19 and restrictions in your area, please consult the government information for the most accurate and updated information:
Big decisions require accurate information and education to make them. Your wedding definitely qualifies as a big decision. I encourage you to refer to information that is being shared by qualified professionals on our government websites and by medical professionals. Be cognizant that we can’t predict the future and don’t know what things will be like in 2 months from now. Work with your vendor professionals, like your wedding planner and your venue(s) to make decisions on how best to move forward and keep your other vendors in the loop. Get as much information as you can to make the decision that is best for the two of you. Recognize that the best decision might be to wait for 2-4 weeks to get more information and reassess at that time.
For now, stay safe, stay healthy, and know that you are not alone. If you have questions regarding your wedding, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 403-619-0528.