If you are facing the decision to cancel or postpone your wedding as a result of COVID-19 our hearts break for you. We know first hand how much goes into planning a wedding, and we feel your disappointment. We also feel the actions we are being asked to take by government to Stay Home and plank the curve, are the right ones. If we all do our part now, we will be able to gather and celebrate again soon.
Though this is an incredibly difficult and emotional decision to make, and the thought of re-planning your wedding can feel overwhelming, you will get through it. Instead of panicking, the best way to manage stress is to have a plan!
What to do when you are faced with postponing your wedding:
While things are changing daily, you can still make a plan, gathering information, noting when you will make decisions, and creating a clear sense of how and when to move forward.
Step 1. Communicate with your vendors.
Reach out to your confirmed vendors, sharing that you are considering cancelling or postponing your wedding as a result of COVID-19, and ask how it would impact your agreement with them. Will you lose your deposit? Are they able to re-schedule? Will their be additional costs to do so?
When communicating, if applicable, ask that they freeze your current orders as it relates to flowers being ordered (typically one month out), stationery printed with dates etc.
*Please keep in mind that as wedding and event vendors, every one of their clients is facing the same decisions you are. Many wedding and event vendors depend on the income they make in the busy spring and summer seasons to carry them through the year. Like many others, their livelihood has been negatively impacted and they could be facing stressful decisions around how to stay in business and meet their basic expenses for the year ahead. Above all, lead with heart, and know we are all in this together.
Step 2. Prioritize what matters most to you as a couple.
A lot has happened in the world over the last few weeks, and you may find your priorities have shifted. Write a list of the top 5 elements of the wedding that you each value most. Compare your lists, and together narrow them down to the top 3 elements you both value. Have they changed from when you began planning your wedding, or have they remained the same? These priorities should guide your decision making.
Some elements to consider:
- Guest list (and are many of your guests traveling to attend)
- The Venue/Atmosphere
- Timing (you don’t want to wait to be legally married)
- Flowers and Decor
- A big party
“Our top three prioritizes are having all my friends and family together, the venue/location of the wedding, and our photography.”
In this case you may decide that for you, it’s best to postpone the wedding to 2021 when you feel most confident your friends and family (many whom may be traveling) can attend, and your venue and photographer are available on the same date.
“Our top three prioritizes are getting married soon (you don’t want to wait to be married), having friends and family together, and that the wedding is a celebration!”
In this case you may decide that, when appropriate, an intimate elopement for just you two (or a few), followed by a winter party with all of your friends and family (where you can still walk down the aisle if you choose), could be the best option for you.
“We want to be married, we want to be careful with our money, and we want to have those that matter most to us present.”
In this case, you may decide that hosting an intimate ceremony and a long table dinner reception with those closest to you in the private room at your favourite restaurant, is how you’d like to celebrate. Spending less money than you might have on a 150 person wedding, and having the ability to plan it quickly when we know it’s safe.
Step 3. Assess the impact of postponing your wedding against your prioritizes and explore the options.
Armed with information on how postponing your wedding may impact your budget and priorities, it’s time to explore options.
We never could have imagined this situation, and wish every couple could have the wedding exactly as they had envisioned, on the date they had planned for it. Perhaps though, what lies ahead is even better than you imagined. Below are some possible options you might be considering.
- Postpone until the fall, and reassess in July.
- Postpone until the winter and begin re-planning a winter wedding!
- Postpone until 2021 and plan for the dream day you envisioned one year later.
- Elope this summer, and postpone re-planning your celebration until this lifts.
- Adjust your plans from a big wedding, to an intimate wedding for just your nearest and dearest late this summer or fall. Perhaps that will mean saving some money, and perhaps that provides you piece of mind as it limits travel and the number of people gathering.
Step 4. Make a decision on when you will make a decision.
As if wedding planning wasn’t all consuming enough, considering re-planning your wedding in the midst of a pandemic has likely taken you to a new stress level. To ease the pressure, based on your current wedding date, and pandemic restrictions, set out some dates on when you will make key decisions by. Stay on-top of the news (or your planner will!), and reassess when your decision date arrives.
While weddings may look a little different than they have in the past, one thing we know for sure is that love will not be cancelled. Hold on to the ones you love, and know that the only way we will get through this, is if we are working together.
If you have questions or there are other ways we can provide you support, please do not hesitate to reach out at email@example.com
Stay safe and stay at home. Love from the Spread Love team.