Originally Written & Posted By Wedding Wire
It’s safe to say most of the world is on edge right now, as countries, governments, and communities react and prepare for the ongoing impact of a pandemic. The new strain of the coronavirus (COVID-19) is spreading rapidly, and due to the many unknowns surrounding the illness and its lasting-impact, many businesses and schools are shutting down or creating work-from-home policies. It’s also causing a major strain on the wedding industry, as venues scramble to react to the news and create preventive measures for upcoming events. Engaged couples, too, must respond quickly to the news and make difficult decisions regarding their upcoming nuptials. While those with dates in the near future are most significantly impacted, even weddings later in the year may experience delays or other unexpected shifts.
First things first: Breathe. Take a moment. And remember you’re not alone in this uncharted territory. Here, we spoke with wedding planners on how couples can navigate and adjust to this new normal.
I’m feeling overwhelmed. Where should I begin?
Amy Shey Jacobs of Chandelier Events in New York describes the current state of affairs best: every hour the conversation is changing, and the industry is working around-the-clock to consult with clients and vendor partners. At first, Jacobs was focused on making small tweaks with social distancing—including no-hug receptions, elegant ways to have hand sanitizers available, switching buffets to individual surfaces, and reducing headcounts. But, as the days and hours have gone by, growing quarantines, travel bans and federal and state rules about legal venue capacities have forced couples to think about bigger changes.
If you have a wedding happening within the next few months, get in touch with your vendors as soon as possible. How come? Nor Sheils of Bridal Bliss in Seattle, says it gives you time to explore all of your options, understand the new regulations impacting your zip code and create an overall, holistic view of how your big day may be impacted. Though it is a high-stress time, Sheils says try not to panic. “ No one knows what the future will hold. Now is the time to review your vendor contracts and insurance policy, and create a loose backup plan,” she continues. “Communicate with your wedding professionals, educate yourself on rescheduling clauses and explore all options.
As you go through your documents, create a check-list as a team that addresses these areas:
- Your wedding date. If it’s in the next two weeks, you may need to reschedule if your city, town or state is declaring a state of emergency. (More on this below.)
- Your wedding venue. Some areas of the country have limited the amount of people who can congregate in a room together—starting at 100 in select locations. Your venue will know their limits.
- Your guests and their health and comfort. Having a wedding where everyone is on edge will not create that once-in-a-lifetime experience you have dreamt of. Especially if you have many older guests, who are at the highest risk for COVID-19, they may not be able to attend in the near future.
- Your insurance policy. If you’ve purchased wedding insurance, read your provider’s policy information to understand your rights and what it covers and what it does not.
What should I do if I decide to reschedule?
Generally speaking, it’s important for you and your partner to be....
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